Introduction of modern technology by General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) at Jeddah and Madinah airports have greatly improved the quality of services provided to the thousands of pilgrims coming from all over the world. It has helped authorities achieve technical and security standards and practices with great efficiency.
GACA implemented technological solutions ensuring streamlined movement of pilgrims by changing the direction of all tracks in the terminals to one direction, that is, to arrivals only during the stage for receiving pilgrims. There will be separate terminals for bidding farewell to the the pilgrims. The capacity of the Haj terminals per day during arrival and departure stages reaches 48,000 passengers, Saudi Press Agency said.
GACA has linked the operation systems, particularly scheduling the flights and actual arrival and departure times for all airlines that are carrying pilgrims with the Ministry of Haj and Umrah and the company for operating the Haj terminals. All these were arranged according to the actual flight times so as to prevent crowding of pilgrims in the terminals.
Most outstanding among these technologies is replacing passports (Jawazat) counters with more sophisticated and efficient ones, renovating the luggage weighing support area, and improving bus routes, parking lots and installing a modern system for them.
In addition to these, 14 travel terminals were readied. They contained 114 counters for completing travel procedures, 208 Jawazat counters,18 travel gates and 10 luggage belts each 1180 meters long. Apart from these, the First Class terminal and others were allocated for pilgrims continuing their journey to Madinah. The parking lots can accommodate 100 buses while the open ground can accommodate 26 planes at the same time.
Prince Muhammad Bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Madinah has increased the number of customs inspection machines to four so as to speed up procedures.
This is in addition to an additional location for customs inspection inside the terminal and providing two services platform for use by the United Agents Office, completion of procedures for pilgrims targeted by the Makkah Route Initiative (MRI) by increasing the capacity of the inspection zone by increasing its area to 745 sq. meters, aside from providing 24 self-service counter, six platforms for verifying travel documents, 10 gates for self-boarding.
This is in addition to a special services zone meant for people with special needs. It includes car parking lots, special lanes for completing procedures in the arrival and departure terminals, special zone for loading and unloading opposite the main terminal and a waiting area next to the departure gates.