by the Islamic Foundation of Ireland
1) One should make a sincere tawbah (repentance) to Allah (Subhanahu wa t’aala) from all sins major and minor and from all mukrooh (disliked) things. The essence of tawbah is that: (i) one should refrain from the sinful act and stop doing it immediately. (ii) One should regret what one has done in the past and seek Allah’s forgiveness. (iii) one should make a strong determination not to do the sinful act again (iv) if one has wronged anyone by physically hurting him or by attacking his/her honour or by taking his/her money unlawfully then one must settle any of these wrongs by returning what is due to those whom one has wronged or by seeking their pardon.
In the Hadith the Prophet (Salla Allahu alaihi wassalam) said, “He who has done a wrong affecting his brother’s honour or anything else, let him ask his forgiveness today before the time comes when he will have neither a Dinar nor a Dirham. If he has done some good deeds, a portion equal to his wrong doings will be subtracted and given to the one whom he had wronged; but if he has no good deeds, he will be burdened with the evil deeds of the one he had wronged in the same proportion”.
2) One should do one’s best to pay one’s debts. Whatever debts one is unable to settle before his departure, one should appoint someone to pay them on one’s behalf. One should return the deposits under one’s care o their owners. He/she should discharge the rights due to Allah such as Zakat, Kaffarah and Qadha (Qaza.) He/she should write his/her will. One should leave for his family and those who depend on him for their livelihood enough money which will keep them until his return.
3) One should seek the pleasure of one’s parents and ask their pardon. One should seek the pleasure of one’s relatives and settle any difficulty with them.
4) The pilgrim should make a pure intention of his/her Hajj that he/she intends it to be for the sake of Allah (Subhanahu wa t’aala) alone. One should be very careful and not do Hajj for the sake of Dunyah or to boast or show off.
5) One should learn the rules of the Hajj and how to do it. This is an obligation since an act of worship cannot be accepted from one who does not know how to do it. It is recommended that one should carry with him/her a comprehensive book on the rules of the Hajj. One should read it frequently and repeat reading it until one almost memorises the rules and du’a.
6) The pilgrims must ensure that his provision is Halal. He should take with him/her enough provision (money) to spend and give Sadaqah to those in need.
7) One should look for a good and righteous companion who is known for his/her adherence to the rules and adaab of the Shar’iah. The purpose is that is that this companion should help him/her to discharge the rites of Hajj correctly, to guide him/her if he does something wrong and to remind him/her when he/she forgets.
8) The pilgrim should make an effort to please his/her companion(s). He/she should patiently endure their mistakes and anger. If things go completely wrong with the companion(s) then it is better for him/her to depart lest his/her pilgrimage might be spoiled.
9) It is recommended that one should start his/her journey early in the morning. According to the Hadith of Rasulullah (Salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) he said that: Allah (Subhanahu wa t’aala) has blessed the early hours of the morning for the Muslim Ummah.
10) It is recommended that when leaving the house one should pray two raka’ats reading in the first raka’at after surah Al-Fatihah surah Al-Kafrun “Qul Ya Ayyohal-Kafrun” and in the second raka’at surah Al-Khilas “Qul Huwal-Lahu Ahad….” In the Hadith Rasulullah (Salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said: “When a person intends to travel he/she leaves for his family nothing better than two raka’ats which he/she prays before starting his/her journey.”
11) It is recommended that when one leaves, one should read the du’a for leaving the house: “Bismillah. Tawakkultu ‘ala Allah, wala Huwla wa la Quata illa Billah.”
12) When one gets on a car or board a plane one should read the du’a for traveling. (click here)
13) During the journey, one should increase in dhikr (remembrance of Allah), Istighfar (seeking Allah’s forgiveness) recitation of the Qur’an and du’a for himself, his parents and to his loved ones. One should observe prayers in Jama’ah.
14) One should recite takbir when one goes up a hill, and recite tasbih (Subhan Allah) when one descends down.
15) The pilgrim should avoid dispute and arguing with other people. One should be very careful not to commit any Haram act because the punishment for sins is multiplied in the sacred land of Makkah. Allah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) says: ” ..Whoever intend a wrongdoing therein We will make him taste of a painful punishment” (surah Al-Hajj 25)