Haj to cost up to 30pc more this season

June 27, 2011 - 12:37:08 am

DOHA: A number of expatriates planning to go for Haj this year will be hit hard by a sharp rise in Haj tariffs that was announced by the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs, yesterday.

The fares for pilgrims travelling by road (Category C) has been raised by more than 30 per cent compared to last year.

Those travelling by air (Category A) will also have to pay more this time, with a hike in the tariffs by about six percent, compared to last year.

Tariffs for C category has been hiked from QR9,200 to QR12,000 with trips to Makkah and Madina. Those opting not to travel to Madina will have to pay QR10,000, against QR8,120 charged last year.

Most expatriates normally prefer to travel by road due to the relatively low fares, but many of them would find the new hike unaffordable.

The package includes accommodation, services at the holy sites, Mina camping, food and transportation and accommodation in a hotel with a minimum three star facility for three nights. The amount also includes charges of the unified agents office, the Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported yesterday.

The prices of category (A) has been raised to QR16,000 from last year’s QR15,100 (including trips to Makkah and Madina) and to QR12,800, excluding Madina, against QR12,460 charged last year.

The package does not include air tickets but cover all other services available to Class C plus accommodation in a hotel with a minimum four star facility for three nights.

A third category (Category B) for pilgrims travelling by air that offered lower fares compared to Category A has been abolished this year. Fares for Category C has now become almost similar to that existed in Category B (QR12,400) last year.

Details of the tariffs for category (A) are as follows: QR 5,100 for accommodation in Makkah, QR 3,200 for accommodation in Madina, QR1,200 for shrines services, QR 2,900 for Mina camping, QR1,800 for food and QR1,800 for transportation.

Details for category (C) are as follows: QR 4,200 For accommodation in Makkah, QR 2,000 for accommodation in Madina, QR800 for shrines services,

QR2,200 for camping in Mina, QR800 for food and QR2,000 for transportation.

The Haj and Umrah Department at the Ministry has urged all aspiring pilgrims to register online between July 2 and September 13.

The Peninsula