Minimum price for private Hajj travel packages set at Tk 463,744

The decision was announced by Mr. Shahadat Hossain Taslim, chairman of the Association of Hajj Agencies of Bangladesh, or HAAB, at a press conference in Dhaka on Thursday.

The Muslim pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia will begin around July 8, with the exact date subject to the appearance of the moon.

This year, 57,585 pilgrims from Bangladesh will be able to make the trip. Among them, 4,000 will be able to do so through a package tour offered by the government, while the rest will travel through private agencies.

Private agencies offer the minimum fare as part of the “standard package”, HAAB chairman Shahadat said.

Each agency will also have the possibility of offering other special packages, but their price cannot be lower than the fixed minimum.

As part of the standard package, accommodation will be arranged for pilgrims within 1,000 to 1,500 meters of the outer boundary of the Haram Sharif, also known as the Grand Mosque of Makkah, Shahadat said.

If Saudi Arabia imposes additional fees, Hajj pilgrims will have to pay these in addition to the standard cost of the packages.

Each pilgrim will have to take with him 19,683 Tk, equivalent to 410 riyals, to pay for the qurbani or animal sacrifice ritual, he said.

On Wednesday, the government announced the Hajj packages for this year.

Government Package 1 will cost Tk 527,340 while Package 2 will cost Tk 462,150.

Private Hajj packages should be priced between government rates and the minimum private rate as per the rules.

The last time Bangladeshi Muslims were able to take the trip was in 2019. In 2020, the government also announced travel packages, but the trips were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bangladesh cannot start sending Hajj travelers to Saudi Arabia until May 31, so the HAAB official has demanded flights take off from June 10.