Low-cost Haj quota upped from 41,000 to 50,000

Makkah During hajj

Fifty thousand domestic pilgrims will benefit from the government’s low-cost Haj service this year, said Saad Al-Qurashi, chairman of the Haj and Umrah Committee at Makkah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, on Monday.

“There will be seven categories in the low-cost Haj service with prices ranging between SR3,000 and SR5,000,” Al-Qurashi told Arab News. During the past three years, the number of pilgrims benefiting from the service increased from 17,000 in 2013 to 41,000 in 2014 and 50,000 in 2015, he said.

The ministry will start accepting applications from domestic Haj service providers on Wednesday and from low-cost Haj service agencies on Thursday. The names of companies qualified for low-cost service would be announced at 1 p.m. on the same day, said Al-Qurashi.

The ministry also disclosed plans for early allocation of tents in Mina for agencies serving domestic pilgrims on the basis of performance rate they achieved during the past Haj season. “We will inform companies about the result of tent allocation through SMS and the ministry’s website,” a ministry official said. “We have allocated 17 tents for low-cost pilgrims,” he pointed out. Low-cost Haj services will be available for SR5,000, SR4,800, SR4,400, SR4,150, SR3,900, SR3,500 and SR3,000 depending on the services and facilities.

Al-Qurashi spelled out plans to establish a Haj support service company with a capital of SR150 million. “This company will be first of its kind and to be formed by owners of 60 domestic Haj service firms,” Al-Qurashi said, adding that it would provide transport and catering services. He said domestic pilgrims would require about 30,000 seats on Saudia flights.


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