The Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah launched the “Smart Hajj” platform, which comes within its participation in the Makkah Cultural Forum in its current session, under the title “How to be an example in the digital world”.
The Smart Hajj platform aims to link operations and services in the Hajj and Umrah sector and includes the issuance of smart identification cards for each pilgrim containing his personal, medical, and residential information, and the card contributes to guiding pilgrims to their residence and control entry to it and various facilities.
The smart card works by utilizing near field communication (NFC) technology, which enables the card to be read through the self-service devices (KIOSK) deployed in the holy sites, and the card contains a barcode that is read by workers to know the pilgrim’s information.
The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah was one of the first participants in the Makkah Cultural Forum for this year, with the Smart Hajj initiative, which is one of the initiatives keeping pace with Vision 2030, and the implementation of the initiative came to be a successful model for applying modern technologies to serve the guests of Allah.
The smart card will be activated during the Hajj season of this year, 1442 AH, after it was started to be used during the Hajj season 1440 AH on an experimental basis. About 50,000 cards were distributed to a group of pilgrims to study the experience, and it will be managed through a unified center to control all services, in which all governmental and private sectors participate.
It is noteworthy that government agencies have interacted with the discussion sessions of the “Digital Initiatives Industry” forum to exchange knowledge and experiences, and share their ideas and opinions on the realization of the Forum’s vision, mission, and implementation plans, to maximize the impact of the Forum and increase its achievement of performance measures and strategic objectives, as it ended with formulating proposals for initiatives in six tracks, namely health, education, culture, media, values and services, and Hajj and Umrah.