Recently in Makkah, an old lady came for Umrah wearing the Ihram of men, the two white pieces of cloth. A few women at the Haram (the Grand Mosque in Makkah) helped her cover her head and change her clothes. Millions of people come for Umrah and Haj from around the world, but many, like the lady above, are unaware of its Islamic rulings and rites.

Here are some common errors adapted from the above resource:

Meeqat point
Some pilgrims bypass the designated Meeqat point of lhram on their route without either being in the state of Ihram or entering into Ihram there, proceeding until they reach Jeddah or some other place at which they enter Ihram.

This is against the command of Allah’s Messenger (peace be on him). Every pilgrim should enter into Ihram at the designated Meeqat point in his route. If one did not pass through one of the five Meeqat points, he should enter into Ihram at a point that is nearest to it.

If someone bypassed, he must either go back to the Meeqat point in his route and enter into Ihram, or he must give an expiation by sacrificing a sheep in Makkah and feeding all its meat to the poor.

Starting the Tawaf at some point other than the site of the Black Stone, while it is obligatory to begin Tawaf from the Black Stone.

Doing one’s Tawaf inside the Hijr of lsma’il. The Hijr of Isma’il is a part of the Ka’bah which would then be left out of Tawaf. Such a Tawaf is invalid.

Doing Ramal (taking quick short steps) during all seven circuits while Ramal is to be done only during the first three of the “Tawaf of Arrival” (Tawaf Al-Qudum).

Struggling vehemently to kiss the Black Stone in this process and hitting or pushing people. Such acts, which are injurious to Muslims, are not permissible.

Touching the four corners of the Ka’bah or its walls. The Prophet (peace be upon him) did not touch any part of Ka’bah except the Black Stone and the Yemeni Corner.

Specifying supplications reserved for each circuit. The Prophet (peace be on him) did not specify any supplications except to say “Allahu Akbar” when he reached the Black Stone and, at the end of each circuit between the Yamani Corner and the Black Stone, he said: “Rabbana, atina’ fid-dunya hasanatan wa fil-akhirati hasana wa qina adhaban-nar.”
(Our Lord, give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter and save us from the punishment of the Fire.)

Raising voices above the voices of others; while following or leading a group during Tawaf and creating confusion among other worshippers.

Scuffling and wrestling to pray at the Station of lbrahim. This is contrary to the sunnah, besides causing harm to other pilgrims. It is sufficient to pray the two Raka’ah after completing Tawaf anywhere within the Sacred Mosque.

When climbing upon Safa and Marwah, some pilgrims face the Ka’bah and raise their hands towards it while saying “Allahu Akbar”. The Prophet (peace be upon him) did not do so.

Here you may glorify and magnify Allah in any words you wish while facing the direction of the Ka’bah. It is preferable, however, to say what the Prophet (peace be on him) recited at Safa and Marwah.