Everything in Saudi Arabia related to Hajj from (Accommodation, Transportation, Catering, and Mina camp) is tied up with the American Dollar as the exchange rate from Saudi Riyal to American Dollar does not change from 3.75. Usually Hajj providers in Canada price the Hajj packages based on the US dollar value and then present it to the market at the equivalent price in Canadian Dollar.
Since the start of 2015, the Canadian Dollar value has been dropping compared to the American Dollar until recently it was trading at its lowest value in more than six years. What that means to Hajj providers is that they have to use a highest exchange rate that the current one in order to ensure they don’t lose money, which eventually come at the cost of the Haji.
Let us take an example of a Hajj package that is worth $8000 USD, the current exchange rate is within the 1.4 and 1.5. Since Hajj still away ahead of us, and usually the Hajis pay for Hajj in installments, the Hajj providers will take the higher exchange rate which is 1.5 and some take even higher to be in the safe side … for the sake of this example let us take 1.5..that means the package will be priced at $12,000 Canadian Dollar where if we use the current rate of 1.4 the package price becomes $11,200 Canadian Dollars. That is a loss of $800 Canadian Dollar per person that the Hajis will pay for.
Some Hajis have savings in US dollar, some Hajis have savings in Canadian Dollar and can exchange the full amount right now and save themselves a loss of a minimum of $800 to $1000 Canadian Dollar, so why force this on the Canadian Hajis?! …. Another Issue, what if the Canadian Dollar trades at a higher value, let us say next month the exchange rate becomes 1.35 or less…It is safe for the Hajj providers but NOT safe for the Hajis.
In summary; Any Hajj Provider in Canada prices the Hajj packages in Canadian Dollar, will be using the safe exchange rate according to the recent changes in the trading value of the Canadian Dollar. This Hajj provider will be ONLY looking at his own interest of not occurring any lose as a result of the inflation of the American Dollar. But That will hurt the Hajis as they will be overpaying even if the Canadian Dollar adjusts.
The solution is easy and have worked out last year; To avoid overpaying, Falcon Travel decided to sell the Hajj packages this year in American Dollar. This way, the Haji is paying the actual amount we pay in Saudi Arabia for the components of the Hajj packages “Hotels, Catering, Transportation, Mina Camp,…etc”. That doesn’t mean that you can’t pay us in Canadian Dollar, of course you can, but you will be charged according to the day of payment exchange rate, that ensures accuracy and gives the Haji a chance to monitor the Canadian Dollar value and chooses to pay when the exchange rate is suitable.