Sales in the central markets of Mecca are estimated at 15 million riyals this season, and the stores are awaiting the fourth phase of the return of pilgrims.
With the gradual return to performing Umrah, gift shops for pilgrims in Makkah Al-Mukarramah recovered again, after a stagnation of more than 200 days.
The pilgrims are keen to acquire gifts from the markets of Makkah of all kinds, to record the memory of their performance of the rituals of Umrah and to give them to their families and friends something from this city.
The gifts of pilgrims include toys for children, textiles, perfumes, prayer carpets, models of the Two Holy Mosques and a swimming pool, as well as antiques bearing pictures of the Holy Kaaba, the Grand Mosque and others.
In this context, Ahmed Halabi, a specialist in Hajj and Umrah services, said in an interview: “The economic movement in Makkah Al-Mukarramah was a slow movement throughout the first phase extending from 4 to 18 October, because the pilgrims are linked by private buses and a specific timetable, It helps them to wander any of the markets surrounding the Grand Mosque, whether before or after performing the Umrah.
While fulfilling a sacred duty is your primary purpose for visiting Makkah, shopping for gifts lets you return home with keepsakes of your incredible journey. The city has ample shopping options, ranging from market stands to luxury boutiques. Makkah’s malls, shopping centers and hypermarkets are cool, comfortable and modern.
Makkah Store Hours
Shops in Makkah are generally open from 9am to midnight Saturday–Thursday, and 2pm or 4pm until midnight on Friday. The exception is some shops around the Grand Mosque, which are open 24/7. Large supermarkets like Bin Dawood, Panda, Noori and Carrefour are open from early morning until past midnight.
What to Buy in Makkah?
As the religious capital of the Islamic world, Makkah is the place to buy prayer mats, prayer beads (misbaha), Holy Qurans and bottles of Zamzam water. Other popular souvenirs are ouds (a pear-shaped string instrument), attar (perfume) and miswaak (teeth-cleaning twigs). Dates are commonly sold in Makkah, although they are often cheaper in Taif, the mountain resort city 100km east of Makkah. Gold is a popular purchase for travelers to Makkah, as it’s said to be less expensive and of higher quality than gold from elsewhere.
He added, “The economic movement recorded a further recovery with the second phase, which started from October 18, with the number of pilgrims increasing to 15,000 and worshipers to 40,000, but the pilgrims remained committed to special programs that hinder their tour of the markets.”
Halabi explained that the real revival of the shops located in the central region and the flow of pilgrims to buy gifts began on the first of next November, with the start of the third phase, which includes permitting the performance of Umrah, visiting and prayers for citizens and residents from inside and outside Saudi Arabia.
The environment confirms that Saudi Arabia is free of desert locust breeding
The environment confirms that Saudi Arabia is free of desert locust breeding.
He added, “Umrah performers coming from outside Saudi Arabia are keen to buy gifts from Makkah Al-Mukarramah. The restaurants and shops selling snacks and foodstuffs are also reviving very well with the Umrah performers coming from abroad, even if their number decreases.”
He concluded, “Everyone is waiting for the fourth stage to start life again in the streets and roads leading to the Grand Mosque.”
For his part, a member of the National Committee for Hajj and Umrah, Muhammad al-Qurashi, told Al-Arabiya.net: “The revenues of the gifts market expected in Makkah during this year’s Umrah season are estimated at about 15 million riyals, as many pilgrims are keen to buy gifts, whether prayer beads or carpets. “