The newly opened 2024 Hajj season Media Center offers three studios for TV, other media channel interviews, and a shared workspace

Saudi media representatives during the opening ceremony of the 2024 Hajj season Media Center.
By Ajape Sefiu A. 
  • 24/7 operated center offers journalists shared workspaces and real-time updates during the Hajj season

Sunday, May 19, marked the opening of the media center for the 2024 Hajj season at King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah’s Hajj and Umrah terminals by the Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services.

Over 1,300 journalists from 16 different nations will receive support and assistance from the center as pilgrims arrive and depart through the airport throughout the Hajj season.

Providing journalists with shared workspaces and real-time updates, the center operates around the clock to improve media efficiency throughout the Hajj season.

In addition, the General Authority of Media Regulation, the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, and the Ministry of Interior oversee the Makkah Route Initiative in a special pavilion.

Additionally, it serves national and international media organizations, such as television networks, news agencies, and individual journalists, correspondents, and photographers.

Saleh Al-Zuaid, official spokesman for the Ministry of Transport, said, “The importance of the center lies in providing a place for journalists, offering multiple studios, shared workspaces, showcasing comprehensive digital transportation technologies and delivering media messages in five languages: Arabic, English, French, Urdu and Persian,” according to Arab News.

Al-Zuaid talked about the developments in technology that will transform pilgrims’ logistics and transportation networks. With intentions to bring 32 more this year, 19 technologies were introduced last year to improve the pilgrim experience.

Notable innovations include road-cooling technology, virtual glasses for bus inspections and automatic monitoring technology, which significantly reduce bus inspection time. The implementation of these technologies aims to improve efficiency, safety and comfort for pilgrims during their journey.

“There are technologies we will announce for feasibility study for implementation in the coming years, some of which were launched last year and achieved high success and will be implemented this year as well, such as the automatic monitoring technology, which reduced the bus inspection time from 60 seconds to 6 seconds, as well as the road-cooling technology implemented last year, which contributed to reducing street temperatures by 12 degrees Celsius.”

Other significant technologies are the luggage-free Hajj program, which will be introduced this year at King Abdulaziz International Airport and Prince Mohammed bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Madinah, to facilitate pilgrims’ departure.

The Ministry of Transport is looking into creative ways to improve the pilgrimage experience. Some of the new projects that will be unveiled include the rubberized sidewalk initiative, the taxi app for easy mobility, and the usage of self-driving cars for order delivery.

The aforementioned activities aim to enhance the general well-being of pilgrims, minimize logistical obstacles, and improve accessibility to vital services.