|KUCHING (Dec 6): More than 600 prospective umrah pilgrims under the management of the Sarawak Umrah and Hajj Agency Organisation (Suha) will have to postpone their trip this month due to lack of air tickets to Saudi Arabia.
Suha chairman Ruzaiman Ghazallee said the country is currently experiencing a sudden increase in the number for umrah prospects and many are still waiting for flights.
In Sarawak, he said the umrah management agencies under Suha have more than 600 registered prospects who have paid in full for their December trip.
“There are around 30,000 Umrah prospects throughout Malaysia that have had to postpone their trip to December 2022.
“These people are still waiting for flight confirmation from airlines such as Saudi Airlines, Malaysia Airlines and other airlines,” he said.
He said this at a press conference held at the Sarawak Golf Club here yesterday to announce the postponement and reorganisation of the Sarawak umrah flight schedule under Suha.
Ruzaiman said this issue is expected to continue until the month of Ramadan 1444 Hijrah, equivalent to March 2023.
According to him, Suha is currently trying to arrange flights for the month of December and this includes arrangement of special charter flights. However, Suha is still waiting for confirmation from relevant parties.
Also in arrangement is the possibility of using the Sarawak government ‘Kuching Umrah Gateway Programme’ (KUG) which flies pilgrims directly from Kuching to Jeddah and is expected to launch as early as January 2023.
“Currently, we are still in contact with the Sarawak Tourism Board to get confirmation of the flight schedule.
“Apart from flight issues, the local umrah industry is also facing lack of accommodation in Mecca and Medina,” he said.
Ruzaiman called on umrah prospects to be patient as they will announce updates and any changes on the situation from time to time through respective umrah agencies.
For the record, the agencies under Suhain reference are Safar Al Ghazali Travel & Tours Sdn Bhd; Az Safir Travel & Tours; Demak Travel Sdn Bhd; Inter-Continental Travel Centre Sdn Bhd; Wan Zakaria Travel & Tours Sdn Bhd; Astana Travel & Tours Sdn Bhd; and Zunaz Travel Sdn Bhd.
|The Borneo Post|