Hajj 1438H – August 2017

As many of you know, for the last 15 years we have been organizing to go for Hajj with El Madina Travel of New York. Once again this year, we are making arrangements to go with them, and plan to take close to 300 people with us, insha Allah. Many people from the Bay Area have joined us, and last year there were over 200 people from the Bay Area. Due to high demand, we have begun making our arrangements and reservations. We anticipate to be sold out by the end of April 2017, insha Allah.

Regardless of your final choice, it is imperative that you investigate the group you plan to go with thoroughly and make your arrangements now, so that you can get the package and travel dates you need.

If you have any questions about El Madina Travel, or just in general about the Hajj, please do not hesitate to contact me.


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1. Packages & Details

Please note that all packages are priced from JFK, and there will be add-on charges from the city of your departure.

Travel dates may vary by one day according to selected flights. Package prices are based on availability. Hotel rates are subject to change without prior notice.

1. Makkah First (Deluxe)

Almost sold out
3 Weeks: August 16/17 - September 6, 2017

Deluxe Package is generally well suited for families and elders. During the 5 days of Hajj, visiting the Jamarat to pelt the Shaytan is an easy walk from the tents. You also have the advantage of easily visitng the apartment building.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $9,630
See package details for exact price breakdown

2. Madinah Express (Deluxe)

Almost sold out
2 Weeks: August 22/23 - September 6, 2017

Deluxe Package is generally well suited for families and elders. During the 5 days of Hajj, visiting the Jamarat to pelt the Shaytan is an easy walk from the tents. You also have the advantage of easily visitng the apartment building.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $9,030
See package details for exact price breakdown

3. Makkah First (Economy)


3 Weeks: August 16/17 - September 6, 2017

Economy Packages are not ideal for elders and people who cannot walk long distances. During the 5 days of Hajj, you will be required to come to the Jamarat to pelt the Shaytan and it’s a 60 minute walk, in each direction.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $8,030
See package details for exact price breakdown

4. Madinah Express (Economy)


2 Weeks: August 22/23 - September 6, 2017

Economy Packages are not ideal for elders and people who cannot walk long distances. During the 5 days of Hajj, you will be required to come to the Jamarat to pelt the Shaytan and it’s a 60 minute walk, in each direction.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $7,730
See package details for exact price breakdown

5. Madinah First (Super Deluxe)

Almost sold out
2 Weeks: August 22/23 - September 6, 2017

In addition to the amenities provided by the Deluxe packages, Super Deluxe packages also include a 5-Star hotel stay for the three days prior to Hajj.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $10,830
See package details for exact price breakdown

6. Makkah Only (Super Deluxe)


10 Days: August 24/25 - September 6, 2017

In addition to the amenities provided by the Deluxe packages, Super Deluxe packages also include a 5-Star hotel stay for the three days prior to Hajj.

Cost (includes flight, quad occupancy, dhabiha & hajj fees): $10,330
See package details for exact price breakdown

2. Required Documents

  • All US passports must be issued 2010 or later. Passports issued prior to 2010 will not be accepted for visas.
  • Greencard holders must submit original greencard with foreign passports. Foreign passport must be issued in 2010 or later, be 10 year passports, and be computerized/machine-readable. Passports issued prior to 2010 will not be accepted. Foreign passports issued in 2014/2015 are preferred. If the Saudi Embassy rejects the visa, we will cancel the Hajj trip and mail you the full refund, minus any penalty from the airlines.
  • We recommend greencard holders to apply for a travel document, as the Saudi scanner is usually able to read that better than greencards. Hajj visa is not guaranteed if passport cannot be scanned by the Saudi system.

What You Need To Do Now

If you are interested in joining us for Hajj, below is a list of immediate steps you need to take.
  • Fill out and send the Hajj form, one form per person
  • Send two color photocopies of one page of your passport (the page with your name, photo, etc.) If your passport is a non-US passport, please send two color photocopies of your green card as well.
  • Send 4 photos with a white background – Please write your name in the back (Costco is the cheapest place to get them)
  • Send a deposit of $3000 per person. For Deluxe Packages, make checks payable to El Madina Travel, and for Economy Packages, make checks payable to El Safa Travel. This is fully refundable until the first of Ramadan.
  • Mail everything directly to: 732 Omega Ct, San Jose, CA 95127. Please ensure that signature is NOT required upon delivery.

What You Need In the Meantime

If you are interested in joining us for Hajj, below is a list of steps you can take in the meantime.
  • Ensure your passports are valid at least until March 2018
  • Marriage Certificate: In case you are traveling with your spouse. If you don’t have one, or can’t find it, I can make you a letter. E-mail me your full legal name, place & date of marriage. (I need to know you personally for this, or know someone who knows you).
  • Meningitis Vaccination: Get your meningitis vaccination & obtain proof of vaccination. This is valid for 3 years. (Obtaining this vaccination while fasting will not invalidate your fast)
  • Shahadah Certificate: If you are a new Muslim, or have a non-Arabic name. E-mail me with your full legal name, place & date of Shahadah. (I need to know you personally for this, or know someone who knows you).
  • Women (over 45) who are traveling alone require a notarized permission letter from the husband, brother or son, indicating he has no objection and permits her to travel for Hajj with El Madina Travel Corporation.
  • Fill out the Saudi Visa Application.
  • All your documents need to be submitted to us in full (including passports) between June 1 & June 15. They will remain with us for at least one month. In case you plan to travel in July or August, then you should look into obtaining a second US passport, which can be done in person at the Passport Office. We can make you a letter for this.

3. Hajj Preparation Workshops

One annual workshop will be held by Imam Tahir Anwar before Hajj on Saturday, July 29, 2017 in the Bay Area. Location to be determined. Registrations will open after Ramadan. If you are interested in attending, please fill out the below form, and we will be in touch in June.

This workshop is open to all, regardless of which group you are traveling with. There will be a nominal fee for the workshop, which we will let you know of in the email we send to you in June. No one turned away due to lack of funds.


Signup to receive Hajj 2017 Updates from Imam Tahir

This mailing list will also be notified of umrah workshop schedule.

What is the difference between the Deluxe Package and Economy Package?

The tents in the Deluxe Package are 10 minutes from the Jamarat (Bridge of Stoning, where we will go for 3 days) and 10 minutes from the Apartments / Resident Building. The tents in the Economy Package are 60-75 minutes walk (each way) from the Jamarat and 75-90 minutes from the Resident Building.

What is the Resident Building?

All Hajjis must leave Madinah 2 days before Hajj to come to Makkah. At that time, hotels in Makkah (withing walking distance of the Haram) are very expensive, so all North American Hajj tour operators choose to keep our Hajjis in a building. Our building is in an area called Shisha, which is 10 minutes walking distance from our Deluxe tents, and you will have access to these during Hajj. (Showers, bathrooms, etc.) - And it is a 10-30 minute car ride from the Haram, depending on the traffic. Other tour operators must do the same, but most of them keep you in an area called Aziziyah, which is 30-40 minutes walk from the tents and the same from the Haram.

Where is the hotel in Madinah?

Al-Nokhba Royal Hotel is one street behind the Madinah Hilton, 5 minutes walk from the Haram. See Google Maps.

Are the meals included?

Open buffet breakfast and dinner are included at the hotels in Makkah and Madinah. During the days of Hajj, all 3 meals will be provided in Mina and Arafat.

How many years have you been operating?

We have been operating under our name, El Madina & El Safa Travel for over 15 years with Emad Gabr as President and Ismail ElChaieb as Vice President.

What is the Hajj Fee?

This is a fee that the Hajj Ministry charges for their costs, and must be paid with cashier’s checks of certain specific banks. All we ask you to do is give us the money, and we will have them prepared for you.

Once we pay you the money, will there be any other costs?

Our 15 years of experience has proven that we have never asked for more money than that which is advertised, unless you specifically ask for an extra service, for which we will tell you up front if there will be a cost or not.

How many years has Imam Tahir joined El Madina Travel?

Imam Tahir has joined El Madina Travel since 2002 for Hajj. He used to go every other year, but has been going every year since 2010.

Who are the Imams that are joining this year?

1) Imam Tahir Anwar, San Jose, CA 2) Mufti Muddassir Owais, Fremont, CA 3) More scholars to be confirmed soon.

Who are the Imams that have joined you in the past?

1) Dr. Umar Farooq AbdAllah 2) Shaykh Mumtaz ul Haq Nazir, Milpitas, CA 3) Mufti Mudassir Owais, Fremont 4) Imam Minhajuddin Ahmed, Chicgo, IL 5) Imam Sohel Mangera, Detroit, MI 6) Shaykh Mehmood A. Hafez, Sacramento, CA 7) Shayh Hasan Abu Naar, CT. 8) Imam Abdurrahman Anwar, Belmont, CA 9) Imam Hamdi, Denver, CO 10) Imam Ilyas Anwar, San Jose, CA 11) Imam Shuaib-ud Din, Utah 12) Shaykh Hamza Wald Maqbook, Chicago 13) Qari Nomaan Hussain, 14) Imam Kashif Ahmed, Sacramento, CA.

Who is the main point of contact for any questions or issues during the Hajj?

We attempt to have at least 1 scholar and 1 administrative person with a cell phone and walkie- talkie in each bus of 48-50 people, and we have 6-7 buses in total.

What is the cancellation process if we are unable to travel?

You will get a full refund until the visa is issued, which happens after Ramadan.

Do you have dhabiha arrangements?

Each year we make dhabiha arrangements for the entire group. In case you plan to follow the sequence on the day of the sacrifice, we will give a specific 2-hour window where your sacrifice will be taken care of.

Do we have any special arrangement to perform Ziyarah in Madinah?

Yes, insha Allah, we do this every year for the entire group.

For the rituals in Makkah during the days of Hajj (Tawaf al Ifaadah), do you provide any arrangements/ shuttle facility to Makkah from Mina?