Haj Pilgrims of Saudi Arabia Buy Gifts Topping $500m
According to the top official of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) the Haj pilgrims (Haj or Hajj is an Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca) have spent an estimated SR2.2 billion (over $586 million) on gifts this year. Ibrahim Batarji, chairman of JCCI’s Industrial Committee was quoted as saying “How much a pilgrim spends on gifts depends on his economic condition and the living standards back in his home country,” It is believed that the actual average can range between SR1,300 and SR1,600.
Many of the Hajj pilgrims will buy items such as prayer rugs, white clothes and jewellery. However some pilgrims tend to buy gold in Makkah and Jeddah because the jewellers in these cities are known to be trustworthy. Around 10%-15% of gifts bought by pilgrims is gold. This year it was estimated that there were around 2 million pilgrims.