Zam Zam well is a one of the signs of Allah SWT and His love for his beloved people, Hajra and Ismail Alayhissalam. It is a well, situated in Makkah, that has unlimited water and will continue till Qiyamah. It is reported that when Prophet Ibrahim AS, left Bibi Hajra and Ismail AS, who was an infant, in the desert that was, where present Makkah is, they soon ran out of water. Bibi Hajra, ran between Safa and Marwa in search of water and when she came back, she saw that there was water coming out from where Ismail AS had rub his ankles. She looked at the water and fearing its abundance, said ” Zam Zam”, which means stop. The water stopped. but from it still emanates, an ever lasting fountain of water that has many attributes, described in ahadith. Later on, passing tribes, noticed birds hovering over Zam Zam and came close to it to live, starting the Makkah city. A small indication of its being limitless is that 78 million, 5 litre bottles were packed this year for Hajj season only. The number of pilgrims in year long umrah season far exceeds those in Hajj.
Traditionally, pilgrims have been allowed as much Zam Zam water as they could bring. But then certain restrictions and rules stopped them from bringing more back home. The latest rues and regulations and tips in the lights of those are shared below for pilgrim’s advice:
- Please confirm with the airline that you are travelling, as part of your umrah package, as to whether, they have any Zam Zam allowance. Certain airlines like British Airways and Saudi Airlines have separate allowance of 5 litres per passengers, whereas, certain others will count the weight towards your regular luggage allowance.
- There is a fresh embargo on bringing in Zam Zam water, limiting it to 5 liters per pilgrim. You can not exceed that. And given it is per person, it should suffice, specially when you are traveling as a family. If you still want to carry more, a work around can be that you can carry small bottles in hand luggage.
- Most local flights within Saudi Arabia, e.g with Saudi airlines, will treat Zam Zam water as part of the baggage allowance. If it exceeds the allowed limit, extra baggage fee will be charged. You need to double check if you have a domestic flight within Saudi as well.
- If, as part of your transfers, you have booked a ford car, it is advised to pack lightly and take less Zam Zam water on the road journeys.
- There is, in fact, no need to take Zam Zam water with you from city to city. It is available at King Abdul Aziz International airport, Jeddah and Madinah airport and you can take it from the airports before your return flights. The bottles are packed specifically for air travel and cost SR9 per bottle.
- If you want you can buy extra litres of Zam Zam water as well, but it is best to ship them instead of carrying with you in baggage. It costs a little more, but it is well worth it.
- Don’t buy Zam zam on the streets, as it is deemed to be mixed with tap water, in certain cases. This is also an illegal practice according to Saudi laws. In addition, it is more expensive as well.