*RIYADH - Saudi Arabia will allow foreign visitors and pilgrims to visit all cities of the kingdom on 30-day Umrah visas. Previously, foreign visitors were only allowed to visit Makkah and Madina on the Umrah visa.*
Umrah visas are usually issued for 30 days and people have to spend 15 days at the two grand holy mosques in Makkah and Madina, said the Saudi government, reported Al Arabia English. link
Abdulaziz Wazzan, undersecretary of the Hajj Ministry for Umrah Affairs, said that the number of pilgrims this year is expected to reach 8.5 million by the end of Shawwal as reported by Saudi daily newspaper *al-Youm. *He added that more than 1,000 pilgrims arrived in Madina last week.
The move to allow pilgrims to visit all cities came as part of Saudi Arabia’s steps to promote tourism in the country.