ISLAMABAD, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 29th Nov, 2016 ) : As many as 1,511 hotels in Makkah with a total of 219,350 rooms have completed preparations to receive up to 15 million pilgrims expected to arrive during the current Umrah season, which began in mid-November. The Umrah season will continue til July 7, 2017. Sources in the hospitality sector expects the number of Umrah pilgrims this year to increase by 3 million over the past season, Saudi gazette reported.
In addition to the hotels, there are 852 licensed buildings and furnished apartments in Makkah with a total of 36,456 rooms to accommodate the pilgrims. The sources said hotel reservations during the first days of the season reached about 85 percent especially in the central area around the Grand Mosque as well as in the districts of Jarwal, Kudai, Al-Aziziyah and Al-Rawdah, which are not far from the mosque. He said the price for single rooms stood at SR350-SR450 per night, almost unchanged from last year.
The prices per night for royal suites overlooking the Grand Mosque ranged from SR1,100 to SR1,300, breakfast and dinner included. Abdul Rahman Al-Amri, a reservation clerk in another hotel, said the pilgrims start making bookings online about 45 days before the advent of the Umrah season. He said the early reservations were made by Umrah pilgrims from the Kingdom and the GCC countries, who represent about 35 to 45 percent of all pilgrims. Hussain Salem, a reservation clerk in one of the five-star hotels in the central area, said their price of a royal suite per night is SR2,500 while the price of a single room is SR1,000. He said the occupancy in his hotel has reached 100 percent and 75 percent of the bills have been paid in advance. APP/mon/mtd/qmr