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    Umra 1438

    Ministry of Haj has activated the prcessing of MOFAs for the new season as of 16 September this year.

    Agents who held umra contract last year will be able to start processing mofas, on their previous year's contract, immediately as long as their Saudi Peers activates their login system forthwith. For example if an agent A is active today, he can scan your passport and acquire mofa within 24 hours and submit your passport for visa to the saudi consulate on the next working day and get back the passport the next day enabling you to fly off immediately you get the passport back.

    ALL new entrants will pay just the mofa charges. Thereafter, any repeaters will pay SR2000 visa fee.

    Different Umra Companies have different policy on the length of your stay once you arrive in KSA. Normally it is for a maximum of 15 days depending on the umra company's resources of hotels but can be up to 30 days. The mofa charges will reflect the number of days allowed to you to stay.

    Lots of pilgrims, from UK, choose a DIY package. Please take care as not all umra agents will oblige you with a visa only because you have engineered your own package. Those who do oblige will have their own mofa charges to cover their cost as you bypass their package.

    Airline fares may vary and, if you are not careful, are often non changeable and non refundable especially if you get an online air fare instead of getting through ticketing agents.

    From the month of 1st Safar 1438AH new contracts will set in and a quota of 5000 per contracted licensed agent will apply as a ceiling. Popular umra agents will definitely run out of their quota pretty soon with the consequence of higher mofa charges.

    I suspect mofas may cost around £100 each at least.

    #2
    Re: Umra 1438

    Originally posted by Ismail Simjee View Post

    Different Umra Companies have different policy on the length of your stay once you arrive in KSA. Normally it is for a maximum of 15 days depending on the umra company's resources of hotels but can be up to 30 days. The mofa charges will reflect the number of days allowed to you to stay..
    Ismail Mota. So if one was to do a DIY umrah, how can they find out before booking the flights/hotels - if they can apply for a visa longer than 15 days?

    JKL

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Umra 1438

      Talk to the agent concerned, simple ya Yousuf.

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Umra 1438

        New Rule on Umra Visitors being introduced this year is on internal transfers.

        Nothing has been mentioned about the charges but pilgrims will have to travel on government supplied coaches, same as they do for Hajj, from Jeddah to Makkah or Madinah and vise versa.

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Umra 1438

          I have booked an Umrah Trip for my family with private transport arranged via my agent. Does this mean I have to use the KSA Coaches instead.

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Umra 1438

            The government simply issued a directive without clarifications and charges. As umra visits are not subjected to the way Haj visits are, I can only speculate that it is an additional cost to be forked out by pilgrims who may than have the prerogative to still choose private means of transfer instead of exercising their right to ride on the coaches paid for already.

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Umra 1438

              Originally posted by Ismail Simjee View Post
              The government simply issued a directive without clarifications and charges. As umra visits are not subjected to the way Haj visits are, I can only speculate that it is an additional cost to be forked out by pilgrims who may than have the prerogative to still choose private means of transfer instead of exercising their right to ride on the coaches paid for already.

              I'm confused please ellaborate

              Comment


                #8
                Re: Umra 1438

                I think it's like the way Hajj fees were in the past where they'd charge you when you got your Hajj visas for the coach transfers during Hajj but then you could take private taxis to Hajj sites like Mina, Arafat.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: Umra 1438

                  Originally posted by kabir75 View Post
                  I think it's like the way Hajj fees were in the past where they'd charge you when you got your Hajj visas for the coach transfers during Hajj but then you could take private taxis to Hajj sites like Mina, Arafat.
                  There never was a time when you could take private transport to mina camps or arafat in a taxi.

                  There has been further bad news since I posted the message about transport.

                  A VAT charge will be applied to all hotel or apartemnt bookings and a charge to cover insurance too. As no hard facts are available, the speculation is at least £45 extra to be hiked up to the mofa charges.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: Umra 1438

                    Ismail bhai,
                    1) Prior to this new VAT and Transportation items, in the OP you mentioned a guess of about 100 pounds for the MOFA. What was MOFA last year in non-Ramadan for comparison? Were you saying the 100 pounds is more than last year or the same? (I'm in the US so dont have a reference for the 100 pounds MOFA).

                    2) For the Hotel VAT, is it to be paid/collected with the MOFA fee or is that something the individual Hotels will collect (Im a DIY'er)? Or (Allah forbid) both will collect?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: Umra 1438

                      I'm all for the Saudi's to make extra income and can understand why they are doing this but they also need to spend their resources on regulating the taxi industry much better. Last year we booked a taxi and before we set off to Medina the taxi driver goes if we get stopped tell them we are related and it's a private trip to Medina. The alarm bells started to ring and we couldn't even confirm if he had a license. Hopefully this will be a safer option for pilgrims if it's a well run service with decent coaches.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: Umra 1438

                        Originally posted by lazy View Post
                        Ismail bhai,
                        1) Prior to this new VAT and Transportation items, in the OP you mentioned a guess of about 100 pounds for the MOFA. What was MOFA last year in non-Ramadan for comparison? Were you saying the 100 pounds is more than last year or the same? (I'm in the US so dont have a reference for the 100 pounds MOFA).

                        2) For the Hotel VAT, is it to be paid/collected with the MOFA fee or is that something the individual Hotels will collect (Im a DIY'er)? Or (Allah forbid) both will collect?
                        Mofa is intended to supplement a licensed agent's package. The MoH never intended that agents sell mofas only which allows pilgrims to conjure up their own DIY package. It is, in fact, against the law to sell mofa only.

                        Having said that, UK is the only country where this practise is rampant and which sooner or later will be shut down. Until then, the mofa sells at a varying rate depending on who is selling it and where in Uk or, in your case in USA, under what circumstances. That drives the price. My earlier post speculating the rate at around £100 excluded the new charges introduced in the last 48 hours and some more on the horizon.

                        To answer the other post:

                        I am myself at loss now as to what the rate will be eventually. Like you, I wait.
                        The VAT charges apply uniformly on all those offering accommodations for pilgrims. That sum will be applied at the point of Mofa generating mechanism and not individually.

                        Taxi service is licensed but cannot be monitored closely due to lack of resources. Hence, expatriates offer this service but without a license and often rely on trust of their passengers to cover them in case they get stopped by the "Maroor" or traffic cops or even immigration "jawazaat". You encountered this one first hand.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Re: Umra 1438

                          Originally posted by Ismail Simjee View Post
                          Ministry of Haj has activated the prcessing of MOFAs for the new season as of 16 September this year.

                          Agents who held umra contract last year will be able to start processing mofas, on their previous year's contract, immediately as long as their Saudi Peers activates their login system forthwith. For example if an agent A is active today, he can scan your passport and acquire mofa within 24 hours and submit your passport for visa to the saudi consulate on the next working day and get back the passport the next day enabling you to fly off immediately you get the passport back.

                          ALL new entrants will pay just the mofa charges. Thereafter, any repeaters will pay SR2000 visa fee.

                          Different Umra Companies have different policy on the length of your stay once you arrive in KSA. Normally it is for a maximum of 15 days depending on the umra company's resources of hotels but can be up to 30 days. The mofa charges will reflect the number of days allowed to you to stay.

                          Lots of pilgrims, from UK, choose a DIY package. Please take care as not all umra agents will oblige you with a visa only because you have engineered your own package. Those who do oblige will have their own mofa charges to cover their cost as you bypass their package.

                          Airline fares may vary and, if you are not careful, are often non changeable and non refundable especially if you get an online air fare instead of getting through ticketing agents.

                          From the month of 1st Safar 1438AH new contracts will set in and a quota of 5000 per contracted licensed agent will apply as a ceiling. Popular umra agents will definitely run out of their quota pretty soon with the consequence of higher mofa charges.

                          I suspect mofas may cost around £100 each at least.
                          So is the repeaters fee of SR2000 relative to 1/each Hijri year???

                          so if I went in 1437 and would like to go in 1438 i will not be charged the extra SR2000??

                          JZK
                          الله مستعان

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Re: Umra 1438

                            So is the repeaters fee of SR2000 relative to 1/each Hijri year???

                            so if I went in 1437 and would like to go in 1438 i will not be charged the extra SR2000??


                            Yes, correct.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Re: Umra 1438

                              Originally posted by Ismail Simjee View Post
                              So is the repeaters fee of SR2000 relative to 1/each Hijri year???

                              so if I went in 1437 and would like to go in 1438 i will not be charged the extra SR2000??


                              Yes, correct.
                              Jazakallah Khayr
                              الله مستعان

                              Comment

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