Hajj, Omra pilgrims services rate increased by 10 percent |
Kuwait Times - 31 July, 2012
Pilgrimages to Makkah are ten percent higher this year compared to last year, according to the various companies hosting Hajj and Omra exhibitions being held at the Kuwait International Fair Ground (KIFG) in Misref from July 29 to Aug 4.
A week of Hajj and Omra exhibitions kicked off yesterday to introduce and promote various products and services to the public while on religious pilgrimages to Makkah, the center of Islamic faith.
The exhibition was inaugurated by Mutlaq Rashid Al-Qarawi, Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs with Roumi Matar Al-Roumi, KIFG Director. “Yes, I can confirm that Hajj and Omra to Makkah is ten percent higher compared to last year. There are various reasons for the increase, but I can sight some, such as improved services and more value added amenities,” said Nour Eddin Khader, Managing Director of Rashed Al-Omar Company.
“There are lots of services that we are getting in Makkah which are not free. The rental rates, for example, have increased, accommodations, busses, airplane tickets are so expensive these days, even the food increased, so, it increased and, in fact, every year it is increasing so this is like normal, there’s nothing wrong or abnormal or anything like that,” Khader added.
But he suggested that most of the increases in charges are usually being compensated for by excellent services. “Like us, last year we only offered two nights but this year, with the increase of ten percent, we offer three complete nights instead. Our transportation from Medina to Makkah is now improved by air, not by land. In the accommodations we usually accommodate up to 8 persons per room, this time we reduced it to four in one room.
Before we had a problem with the toilets, this time, every room has a toilet, we provide royal tents to Mount Arafat; so you see how we are improving year after year,” he added. Rashed Al-Omar Company offers services specifically to expatriates. “We specialized in services to expats, but we do arrange for Kuwaitis, too. We facilitate Hajj and Orma from A to Z, including visas for non-Kuwaitis or expats.”
Mendekar is another company in the exhibition that specializes in Hajj and Orma, but they are exclusive for Kuwaiti customers. “We are offering our services to Kuwaitis only. We offer VIP services. The company has been known from many years, and we have a reputation in the business. Our company offers fixed rates, although this year we increased about ten percent,” said Abdulrahman Mendekar, the deputy assistant and son of the owner told the Kuwait Times.
About two dozen companies from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other countries are participating in the exhibition, including Sebamed.