The importance of adequate preparation for Hajj cannot be over-emphasized because it minimizes physical discomforts and rigours associated with the journey as well as helps to save time and lot of money involved in in the Hajj exercise so as not to go in vain.
Therefore, in order to achieve adequate preparation for Hajj, an intending pilgrim must start preparation as early as possible, to avoid last minute rush, since getting information for Hajj through the officials and obtaining document, medical checks etc., consume a great deal of time.
Four to five months ahead of the actual date of departure is not too much to prepare for Hajj.
Furthermore, in addition to how to achieve adequate preparation for Hajj, an intending pilgrim must do the following among others. (1) Must have met the conditions of Hajj such as (i) Islam: be a practice Muslim (that is, must have been performing the first four pillars of Islam.
It must be noted that, Hajj is not meant for non-Muslim, like wise unserious Muslim that involve in acts which nullifies Iman and who is not ready to make sincere taubah (repentance) before embarking on the holy journey.
Unfortunately, with experience of the writer, it is disheartening that a number of people that embark on Hajj more importantly from Nigeria in recent time lack this vital requirement, heedless of the fact that faith is one of the conditions of the validity of deeds and its approval in Islam etc.
He must make necessary provisions for the Hajj: Consciousness and fear Allah in his actions and speech must override every other thing.
He must perform the exercise for Allah’s sake and all expenses must be paid out of money obtain through hallal means. He must make sincere taubah before embarking on the holy journey as well as learn how to be patient and forgive others.
He should perform correct Istikhara before embarking on the journey. Seeking adequate knowledge on how to perform Hajj and Umrah ritual is important.
This could be done through reading of books, attending seminars, be familiar with all Hajj and Umrah aspects such as recitation of Talbiyya, du’a (invocation), place of rituals, and adabs such as etiquettes of travelling, etiquette of boarding any means of transportation; entering a town; with holy land of Makkah and Madinah among others.
Paying all outstanding debts and returning all the articles left with you to their owners; fulfill your promises to others and correct all wrongs; writing of wills among other things.