“This increase is still below the tax increase and the fluctuation of the foreign exchange rate,” said the head of House Commission VIII overseeing religious and social affairs, Ali Taher, at the Senayan parliamentary complex on Monday, March 12. This means that the direct cost of hajj pilgrimage is Rp35,235,602.
According to Ali, the increase was attributable to Saudi’s 5 percent tax increase, the 5 percent local government tax increase, and the country’s 180 percent fuel price hike.
He explained further that higher prices of aviation fuel and the rupiah’s fluctuating exchange rate against the U.S. dollar also added to the increased hajj cost.
“All of these elements have caused prices to rise for flight components, housing, catering, land transportation, and operational costs,” said Ali.
Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin has welcomed the increased hajj cost, given that those three factors alone could actually cause the cost of hajj to surge by 5 percent.