Ruling on changing names after Hajj

The ninth question of Fatwa no. 3323 :

Q: What is the ruling on a person changing their name like most of the Indonesian pilgrims do? Indonesians are used to changing their names when they go to Makkah Al-Mukarramah or Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah. Is this an act of Sunnah or not?

A: The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to change the bad names to good ones. If the pilgrims of Indonesia are changing their names for this purpose, not for finishing the rituals of Hajj or their visit to Al-Masjid Al-Nabawy (the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah) to offer Salah (Prayer) therein, then this is permissible.

On the other hand, if they are changing their names because they are in Makkah or Al-Madinah or for finishing the rituals of Hajj, for example, then this is a Bid‘ah (innovation in religion) and not an act of Sunnah.

May Allah grant us success! May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions!

Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta’
Deputy Chairman
`Abdullah ibn Qa`ud
`Abdullah ibn Ghudayyan
`Abdul-Razzaq `Afify
`Abdul-`Aziz ibn `Abdullah ibn Baz
 Source: Fatwas of the Permanent Committee

About Umm Abdulazeez

"I am a Muslim who is upon the Qur'aan and the Sunnah and upon the methodology of the Salaf As-Saalih (Pious Predecessors). And that can be said in short by saying, 'I am a Salafee' " [Shaykh Al-Albaanee رحمه الله] ________ Sufyaan Ath-Thawree (rahimahullaah) said: “Indeed knowledge should only be learned for the purpose of fearing Allaah. Indeed, knowledge has been given virtue over other than it because with it Allaah is feared.” [Jaam'i Bayaan al-'Ilm wa Fadlihi by Imaam Ibn Abdil-Barr (rahimahullaah)]
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