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In recent years, more and more people have fallen victim to the Umrah scam, and many have lost thousands of pounds on planned trips to Makkah. Many victims suffer significant financial losses, often losing their life savings.
Umrah scammers do not discriminate based on age, gender, or location. However, in the months leading up to the Muslim pilgrimage of Umrah, organized crime groups are targeting licensed travel agencies to advertise fraudulent deals to Saudi Arabia on their behalf.
In some cases, Umrah Packages are sold for up to 50% off the normal price. Still, the tour operator closes down just before departure, leaving people who need tours. Can I get my money back? However, there are a few things you can do to limit your chances of becoming a victim:
Ensure your travel agent/tour operator is covered by ATOL (Air Travel Organisers License). Suppose the travel agency closes while you are in Saudi Arabia. In that case, you are guaranteed a return flight at no extra cost. If the agency closes before you leave, ATOL protection allows you to get your money back.
Don't book without checking with your travel agent/tour operator – if the deal sounds too good to be true, it usually is. A recommendation from a friend or family member doesn't guarantee the authenticity of an outfit - a scam can take some time before the perpetrators burn their fortunes and disappear.
Researching the company limits your chances of becoming a scam victim.
Check exactly what you are paying for. When paying, think carefully about your payment method. Establishing an auditable paper trail and keeping records of financial transactions will make fraud more difficult.
Always get the terms and conditions in writing as they detail your contract with a travel agent or tour operator. Also, ensure your Umrah flight, accommodation, and visa details are valid.
Contact ATOL (0207 453 6700) or Umrah Ministry for more information on authorized ATOL registered dealers.
Chief of Economic Crimes at the City of London Police, Detective Superintendent Steve Head, said:
“Every year the Umrah scam destroys the dreams of countless people who believe they are about to make a pilgrimage to Mecca. The NFIB is working with the Muslim community to shed light on the scammers who continue to cause so much suffering.”
"The more we know about this crime, the more we can do to prevent it, so I urge anyone who is a victim of the Umrah scam to contact the police."
Please don't suffer in silence or feel ashamed moving forward. Asif Sadiq, chairman of the Muslim Advisory Committee, said:
“The Muslim community needs to ensure that all its members are aware of Umrah's fraud and emphasizes the importance of supporting the police in any way to help them bring these criminals out. before justice.”
Before you cross overseas, look at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) tour recommendation online atwww.fco.gov.united kingdom/knowbeforeyougo or touch the FCO on 020 7008 0232/third for critical tour recommendations and suggestions, and update us of recommendation.
OR when you have acquired a European Health Insurance Card from the Department of Health, this needs to be fascinated by you. At the same time, you tour because it supersedes the E111 shape.
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