JUANITA ISMAIL, MELBOURNE, HAJJ 2019
Having completed a second Hajj (Shukran Lillah) and therefore making notes for comparison, I cannot recommend highly enough to travel with Crescent Tours for your pilgrimage – the journey of a lifetime. As we know, Hajj consists of arduous physical demands, religious rituals to complete with great precision and most importantly for me, the spiritual understanding of why this is the fifth pillar of Islam. Having Shaikh Tawfique Choudhury as our Hajj Imam brings to life the purpose of why we have responded to the call of Allah (SWT) to be together with our brothers and sisters in Islam in the holiest land on earth. Sheikh Tawfique gave a lecture each day preceding and inclusive of the Hajj days. The lectures were insightful, inspiring and moving. The Ziarah that took place in Makkah Mukaramma and Al ’Madinah Munawara organized by Crescent Tours completes the landscape of Sheikh Tawfique’s lectures. Crescent Tours has ensured that each one of us in the group regardless of our age or physical capacity were comfortable, safe, well-fed and no request was a tall order for them. For a month, the group travelled like a family with tears, laughter and helping one another where they can. Crescent Tours was very accommodating for all our needs and more. What was the most distinctive comparison was that when Crescent Tours organized your Hajj, it means that they travel with you, along with you and are never far behind you. Thank you, brother Masood and Sheikh Tawfique for making this a memorable journey for me. May Allah (SWT) increase your health, your wealth and success in Dunya and Akhirah. Jazakullah Khair.
AMIRAH TSITSANKAS, MELBOURNE, HAJJ 2019
Sisters, look no more, worry no more
Crescent Tours has all your needs covered; and then some. All your fears become non-existent.
This tour group will make sure you are not left wandering on your own, moreso you are always at the forefront of the tour guide.
He is always keen to make sure that the food provided is to your acquired taste; so you are not left eating curries everyday.
The tour guide is calm at the most challenging of times. I admire a time that he changed the schedule, at the eleventh hour. The pilgrims where ready to walk through the tunnel to start the walk to the Jamarat. However, we just had a bus ride that took three times longer, the pilgrims where tired, so the tour guide decided for them to relax in the apartment, pray Zhuhr, then move onto the Jamarat. This showed me quick thinking and taking into account the ability of the group as a whole.
We were also blessed with the knowledge of Sh. Tawfique Chowdury. This combination of a calm and wise tour guide and an exceptional spiritual guide made for an unforgettable Hajj.
I would always highly recommend Crescent Tours for Umrah and Hajj.
Amirah, Revert from Melbourne
IMRAN KHAN, SYDNEY -UMRAH 2019
We have arrived home and recovering from the jetlag. I just want to say thank you for organising such a wonderful Umrah trip. We all enjoyed a lot and your organisation was superb. You delivered on everything that was promised and kept on top of everything. InshaAllah would love to travel with you again in future for Umrah or Hajj and will recommend you to others making the journey. Thanks again for everything.
CUCU AISYAH, MELBOURNE - HAJJ 2018
Alhamdulillah, performing hajj was the most memorable and life changing experience to me. All the issues mentioned above are part of the trials during hajj to strengthen our patience no matter what hajj organiser we come with and it's not a big deal. I'm very happy with the service of Cresent Tours and really appreciate your hard works and effort for being amanah. May Allah bless you and your family. All the best for Cresent Tours.
MARIAM & AYKUT, PERTH - HAJJ 2018
The memories of the whole hajj trip still playing in our head and we kept repeating the stories again and again whenever we met friends asking on our journey and experiences. To be honest this second trip makes it alot easier for us as we knew what to expect and are more prepared. With the grace of Allah and together with your guidance, your patience and attention to details makes it even more easier. Aykut, myself and I am sure the whole group couldn't thank you enough for this wonderful journey and experience and we hope to be invited again the holy land and if that happens we will not hesitate to go along with Crescent Tours for the 3rd time. Not forgetting everyone in the group were very helpful and always looking out for each other whenever the needs arise. We both were very happy with the services provided and whatever was promised it was delivered and in fact we got some extra services and honestly there is nothing that we could fault Crescent Tours. Your personal attention to details was superb and we already pass words to others on Crescent Tours services. All accommodations were delivered as agreed upon and food was superb. If I can add, the staff and food at Oberoi was way above our expectations - staff were very friendly, helpful and go beyond their normal services to accommodate our extra/additional requests. Please convey our commendations to the Management and staff at Oberoi Madinah.
May Allah shower all HIS blessings upon you and your family and gives more barakah in your business. Hope to see you again someday somewhere In Shaa Allah. Salam from us
Aykut and Mariam
MIRZA BAIG, MELBOURNE – HAJJ 2017
My wife and I had very enjoyable and spiritual Hajj experience. We are very impressed with your detail communication and prompt replies to all correspondence before the Hajj journey began. However, during the Hajj, unfortunately the electronic communication was not so frequent and that is because of Saudi Telecommunication service coverage and issues (we didn’t receive most of your messages). One advice, perhaps if we known that we could get the Suadi SIM in Shisha, we wouldn’t have wasted time at Jeddah Airport looking for one in very Hot weather conditions. Shisha apartment was comfortable and hotels in Macca and Madina were excellent. Perhaps curries can be little less spicy for people who are not use to spicy food in Shisha and Madina, otherwise all ok.
You were very proactive in providing information on when to go to perform different Umrah and Hajj activities and your experience made it easy for us to perform all activates with very little discomfort. Sheikh Tawfique Chowdhury provided excellent guidance and taught us the true meaning of Hajj. May Allah reward him for that.
May all Accept all of our Hajj and reward you for your kind support and guidance. Attached is a photo of happy hajjas
NAZIA SULIMAN, MELBOURNE-HAJJ 2017
Jazakumullahu Khair Br Masood, by the grace of Allah and with the will of Allah swt, you have brought us safely back home after completing a journey of hearts and a farz of our deen. Alhumdullilah you have definitely delivered and we will, in sha Allah, not hesitate to travel with you again. We constantly reminded ourselves that the entire trip is a manaasik and everything we experienced was a test. Moosa, Safiya, Humairaa and i have no negative feedback, and i have already recommended crescent tours to my colleagues.
You have everything under control and your organisation of the whole trip was very good. You delivered and your patience is commendable, especially when we had to wait for the bus at Jeddah. We thank you for this beautiful journey and i pray Allah SWT reward you jannatul firdous and we will all meet in the highest Jannah. Ameen ya Rabb.
We are truly grateful and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. May ALLAH grant you many more successful tours. Ameen ya Rabb..Kind Regards
MOIN SHAIKH, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2017
Me and my wife have a wonderful Trip every thing went smoothly all appartments Hotels food even food in Mina and Arafat was excellent may Allah Accepts our Rituals of Hajj you did the great Job we love to travel with you again inshallah
Many Thanks and Kind Regards
SHAKEEL HOSENBACUS, MELBOURNE-HAJJ2016
Hope you are well and had a good trip with our 2016 Hajj group. I would like to express my sincere thanks to you for organising, coordinating and facilitating the hajj experience alhamdoulillah. From organising paper works, buses, timings, ziarat, awesome hotel & food and choosing such a knowledgeable and approachable ‘Aalim like Shaykh Khalid, I personally believe you have enabled a beyond par Hajj experience alhamdoulillah.
Few minor things that could be improved upon would be to utilise a proper speaker so everyone can easily hear the speeches. Also, may be communicating to the whole group by simply broadcasting text messages would be helpful. Finally, may be offer a full day Hajj session explaining Umrah, Hajj, Ihram restrictions and practicalities. Inshallah these should enhance the hajj experience.
Thank you again for your relentless effort in making our hajj a wonderful lifetime experience. Please do forward my gratitude to Shaykh Khalid for his guidance and encouragement throughout the trip. Hope to keep in touch until the next Hajj inshallah.
MOHAMMAD USMAN GHANI, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2016
First of all, many thanks for everything you have done for us during the entire hajj time right from easy payment option until last day of our hajj. You have provided everything like accommodation, food, transport with 100 percent accuracy whatever you have mentioned in your website. Not only that you have gone beyond by personally looking after me. You considered my physical health problem and provided me a nice solution. I am grateful to you. If you do not provide me easy payment option, I might not have been able to go to hajj this year. May Allah give you best reward in return.
Mohammad Usman Ghani
PROF. ZAHIRUL & SHIRIN HOQUE, MELBOURNE-HAJJ 2016
Our experience of travelling with Crescent Tours during our 21-days 2016 Hajj tour had been excellent and memorable for its professional and well -structured package, more particularly my wife and I were impressed with your personal care and Shaikh Khalid’s excellent speech on various aspects of Hajj. We enjoyed very much our stays in Makkah Clock Tour and Oberoi hotels, especially food and services at the Oberoi hotel exceeded our expectations. While apartments in Shisha met our expectations, shared rooms could have been provided with some basic essential items, namely small bed side table, clothing hangers and a large mirror in the room, and further bathrooms/showers needed regular cleaning with toilet papers and soaps. While we enjoyed our meals in the apartment, more varieties of foods such as vegetables, plain rice and breads would have been good given the multi-cultural diversity of your guests. The transportations provided were good but it should have been managed more professionally like your Associate Company where you give no travelling option to guests for transferring to Makkah hotels from Shisha apartments (The reason why we did this is because its very risky to transport your luggage separately and our associate Company also had lots of issue with lost baggage). The Immigration Authority at Doha Airport should not have asked for transit visas for Australian visitors – they are always provided on arrival. Perhaps you could sort this out beforehand with the Immigration Authority in Doha. Overall, thank you, Shaikh Khalid and your behind the team for organising such a memorable Hajj trip for us. We would certainly recommend Crescent Tours to our friends and contacts when they plan for their Hajj. Best wishes to you and Shaikh Khalid,
Thanks and kind regards
Professor Zahirul Hoque and Mrs Shirin Hoque
MUHAMMAD & ROZLY SHAH, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2016
First of all a big thank you for organising the Hajj Experience for us. It was indeed very well planned and organised and everything was as advertised.
It was a very unique experience for us and we enjoyed every bit of it. The hotel locations were excellent and so was the service and food. The other accommodations provided were also commendable. We are really glad we had a hassle free Hajj without any mishaps. It was indeed a journey of a lifetime.
Thank you for making the donations on our behalf to the workers at the prophets mosque.
Thank you once again for organising everything for us and may Allah SWT shower his blessings on you.
Both of us are really happy and satisfied with our trip.
Muhammad and Rozly Shah
YASMIN & MUSLIM NOORANI, MELBOURNE-HAJJ 2016
Alhamdhulillah with Allah's Grace and Mercy, both Muslim and I got the opportunity to perform Hajj this year. We both strongly believe that as like everything in life, this is a journey that is written to occur as per Allah’s Decree.
Jazakallahu Khairan, brother Masood for your and Sheikh Khalid's immense support throughout the preparations for this journey as well as during and after the journey.
Alhamdhulillah throughout the journey and all the time we spent together with the rest of the group, there is no single event where we felt concerned or we couldn't manage. This was due to the support provided by the Grace of Allah through you and others Alhamdhulillah. No doubt as everyone else we had some challenges however there wasn't anything that we couldn't find a solution for by the Grace of Allah, Alhamdhulillah.
Everything that had been promised through your website and our communication with you was delivered to us. Whenever we weren't sure of something we would contact you for advice and help. We got prompt appropriate response for that. The hotels and the service provided there was excellent. We really appreciate all support provided by the staff there.
We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the Hujjaj who were with us through this group and the other groups as part of our Hajj Journey. Both of us were provided with lots of care and support as well as learnings from each and every Hujjaj. Jazakallahu Khairan. May Allah accept everyone's Hajj and bless everyone abundantly Ameen. Jazakallahu Khairan
Yasmin and Muslim Noorani
JALIL, SHAINUR & SOHAIL SHAH, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2015
Sorry for the delay in response. The first week back was mainly recovery and then we had sponsored a dua at a mosque on the 15th Nov so getting food organised for approx 160 people took some time. Anyway we had not forgotten and wish to thank you and Shaik Khalid Shah for your help in making our Hajj a memorable experience. May Allah reward you both for making this rewarding journey possible for us and for all other muslim families who were part of the 2014 Hajj group. Sohail sends lots of hugs to his best friend.
We initially chose Crescent Tours from the many Hajj tour guides on the web because of the detailed information on their web page regarding their package price, inclusions, itinerary, hotel details and much more. On further research I found a high school friend who had gone on 2013 Hajj with Crescenttours and he had nothing but praise for Br Masood and Shaik Khalid Shah for their professionalism. Once we registered with crescent , bank account was set and progressive payments were made once a month. The invoice was updated to show the progress. In June our Ihram, Hijab and books arrived as promised and I would advise all intending to go on Hajj to study these books and watch/read info on internet. Closer to Hajj we attended the briefing in Brisbane presented by Br Massod and Shaik Khalid Shah. Shaik Khalid Shah's talks are not to be missed. Once the Shaik begins his presentation, believe me, he will have your undivided attention. His talks are informative and presented in a jovial manner, and, when he finishes, any fears you may have had about your prepardness, will Insha Allah, be allayed. Br Masood briefed us on the itinerary and issues that we need to be prepared for in Jeddah, such as visa processing and transportation.
As a group we all met for the first time in Abu Dhabi. Briefing again by Shaik and Br Masood. After donning our Ihrams we all departed for Jeddah. This year the visa processing was fast, approx 90 minutes. The buses that transported us to our apartments in Shisha, as I understand are allocated by minstry of Hajj SA, and it is a logistic nightmare to transport so many people by bus. However it all happens, and we had to wait our turn. After our arrival in Shisha we had some rest and then we went to Haram to perfom Umrah. Brother Masood and Shaik, guided us through King Abdul Aziz Gate 1 into Haram and from here, most of us separated and went on our own. The next two nights we rested in our apartments and after Fajar on 8th of Dhul Hijja we left for Mina for Hajj. Shaik Khailid's talks continued in the tents and by now, we were all in our comfort zone as regards to Hajj protocol. For Brothers and sisters going for Hajj, I would offer the following advise:
1. Take some antibiotics with you as precautionary measure. (The chemist in makkah and Medina will dispense these as well,as long as you know what you need).
2. Do some walks, as you will do almost 4Km on completion of Saee. The tawaaf distance will vary depending on the level.
3. The Jamaraat is on 4 levels and entrance and exit are one way. No need to rush, walk to Jamaraat from Mina is approx 30 mins, from Shisha 20 mins.
4. You are there at invitation of Allah Subhanaltallah, please thank Allah,exercise sabr, smile at your fellow brothers, and soak in the experience.
The Ziyaarat of Makkah was conducted by Shaik and Ziyaarat of Medina by Shaik from South Africa (forgotten his name). Both these tours were interestsing and informative. Hotels both in Makkah and Medina were 5 star, and in excellent location. Our family was very lucky indeed as our room in Makkah overlooked Kaba.
I would personally recommend Crescent Tours to anyone. I saw Br Masood and Shaik Khalid Shah's, committment to assist and help all who needed it. Br Masood has detailed infomation on the web page as to what Crescent provides and we got all that and more . He responds to your e-mails and phone calls in a timely manner. My family and I take this opportunity to thank Allah Subhanaltallah for His invitation and thank Br Masood and Shaik Khalid Shah and all our brothers and sisters of the 2014 Crescent Tours Hajj group for making our journey a memorable one. Hajj Mabroor
Jaleel, Shainur and Sohail Shah
NAEEM & AMNA, MELBOURNE-HAJJ 2014
Jazak'Allah Khair for your email and also for YOUR efforts in helping in making our Hajj an enjoyable experience for the most part. It must be difficult handling endless questions and complaints from people on a daily basis for a month and for most of the time you kept your cool very well.
Our Feedback is as follows:
Flights - Excellent both in scheduling and service
Hotels - Excellent in all factors - Location, Quality of Rooms, Service
Apartments - Very Good in terms of location and accomodation, and amenities
Food at Apartments - Excellent - The variety was beyond expectations
Catering at Mina - Excellent
Communications - Excellent - Much Appreciation for the way in which you kept track of everyone on occasions they were not with the group (e.g. Initial Boarding time at Melb, Preparation for Ziyara Tour, Departure from Masjid-Al-Haram on occasion of Umrah)
Impromptu transport arrangements for Tawaf-e-ziyara - Excellent
Ziyara tour at Madinah (didn't get a chance at Makkah due to tiredness) - excellent
Transportation - Average. Of course, we fully understand that we couldn't expect much better and yes we were warned about this in advance - which is why the 13 hours between landing at Jeddah and arriving at the Apartments never felt like an arduous time.
However, on a couple of occasions, we were disappointed:
1. The bus ride from Apartments to Clock Tower.
We are fully aware the we had no control over trip itself in that on at least 2 occasions police diverted buses from the main road to some side streets but I couldn't understand why we left the apartments so late in the first place (after 11pm) given that Hotel Check-in was after 5pm. Even if rooms were not ready by 8pm it would have still be worth our while to get there near 8pm and wait for rooms to become available. e.g. Visit the clock tower complex or to grab a meal even. Given that we arrived at our room at 2:45 am on the next morning, our first day at Masjid Al-haram was effectively written off and we found ourselves in 'catch-up' mode in terms of sleep for the next 5 days. It also meant we had to pass up the ziyara tour of Makkah. We know of other Australian parties leaving apartments after Maghrib and reaching their hotel in 20 mins. Even if the bus ride was going to be 4 hours (as was the case from Mina to the apartments), if departing after Maghrib we could have all checked in well before midnight and had a decent rest. Now I know some people might consider that having dinner was important but I would suggest for future tours, that dinner at the apartments be taken off the schedule (or provided earlier - e.g. close to Maghrib time) just to ensure people don't miss out on valuable rest in preparation for amaal at the Holiest Masjid.
(REPLY FROM CRESCENT TOURS: You are right about this. This is a problem we encounter every year. Other Groups do not have this problem because they use Hotels which are 4 star Hotels located far away from the Haram. But since our Hotels are within the Haram Complex, we go through this problem every year and there is no way to avoid it. We cannot leave early after Asr or Moghrib or even immediately after Isha as the road conditions are even more bad at that time. There is absolutely no way any Bus will be allowed into the Tunnel that leads to the Hotels anytime before 9.30 PM.
The only other alternative is to ask the Hujaj to take their own Taxis from the Aparment and go to the Hotel individually on their own as it will be a logistic nighmare for us to organise individual Taxis for the whole group of 70 people)
2. The Trip from Makkah to Madinah.
Again, can't complain about the buses arriving 2 hours late and leaving 4 hours late because that was to be expected but my only concern about that trip is that for the bus WE were on we didn't stop for Maghrib Salaat. It needs to be understood that not everyone has the same thinking regarding combining Salaats when travelling. Some groups consider combining salaats while travelling as acceptable while some groups consider it a practice of Rasoolullah (saw) UNIQUE to the day of Arafat. In future I would ask that people be given the opportunity to pray every salaat at it's appointed time. And those who choose not to - that's fine, that's up to them - but at least this way EVERYONE gets to pray according to their beliefs. Especially being in a Muslim country where there are masjids at all Petrol stations, it should not be a problem.
We hope you are not offended by any of these comments. Our time is over, it cannot be brought back but we make these comments constructively so that the next group that goes with you can come back and say "It could not be better"
Oh, and one more thing (I almost forgot),
Maulana Khalid - Excellent
Naeem and Amna
LAMYAA, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2014
Mashallah my mother has only praise for you and your organisation and I thank you for taking good care of her. If it possible my husband and I inshallah intend on attending hajj next year and were hoping you could reserve us a place if and when u start taking reservations for hajj 2015 inshallah.
Jazak Allah kheir for all your efforts inshallah.
MARIA & TAJUL, MELBOURNE-HAJJ 2014
Alhamdulillah we had recovered slightly from the jet lag.
What I can suggest here;
1) in future, it will be good to bring along loud hailer. This is easier to make any announcement or to draw attention to the hujaj. Moreover, u can save your voice..😃
2) menu can be changed. Not strictly to curry. I can eat curry but once a while something different will be good..
3) Both hotels in Makkah & Madinah were fantastic, great location. However, the twin sharing bed in Hilton was not a favourite. Overall, I'm happy, not much to complaint.
I think that's about all. We are happy with the services, Alhamdulillah.
Maria & Tajul
SHAZEED & SAFINAT, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2014
Sorry for taking so long to get back to you with a feedback. MashaAllah our hajj journey was fabulous. We can not thank you enough for helping us see this journey through from beginning to end.
The level and quality of information provided on your website and at the seminar pre departure is excellent. We chose crescent tours based on the information that was on the internet. We were quite apprehensive as we didn\'t know anyone who had been with you before and your package sounded too good to be true. The cost seemed cheap for the hotels that were on offer but MashaAllah everything was as promised on the website.
We really appreciated all the lectures given by Sheikh Khalid Shah. He is an excellent speaker and was always willing to help and clarify things. We just wished there were some talks scheduled when we were in the hotels in Mecca and Madina to help guide us in our ibadat in the harams. We understand though how it may be hard to organise as people tend to have their own agendas during that part of hajj. It would have been nice to have had an option of attending.
We had the best hajj experience with crescent tours. We have no hesitation in recommending crescent tours to anyone and have in fact already recommended crescent tours to family and friends who are planning on going in 2015. Your hajj package for 2015 looks so good that it makes us want to go back.
Thank you brother Masood for all your help in making our journey a success and special thanks to Sheikh Khalid Shah for making this journey so spiritually enriching for us.
Shazeed and Safinat
TARIQ OWAIS, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2013
The last time we met at Jeddah Airport, I expressed my family’s appreciation and gratitude for the way the trip was organised and managed. We had heard a few stories about Mina, transport issues, food issues and other things that people have faced in the past with other groups but Alhamdulillah our experience was very good and we found no reasons to complain about the arrangement or the facilities. Instead on the contrary we have fond memories of the entire trip. The briefings by Sheikh Khalid were succinct and timely.
To start off, I must mention that the time taken at Jeddah airport was exactly as you had forewarned. This allowed us to mentally prepare ourselves for the long wait (the patience test started here I suppose). Once we reached our apartments at Azizyah, they seemed exactly as we had expected. Hamza, Fahad & I were quiet happy we received a room to ourselves. The food at Azizyah. I could write a lot on this, but i'm sure everyone has already let you know multiple times how good it was. I will just say this - it was delicious, fresh & made it the hotel feel just a bit more like home.
The Hajj itself was a smooth experience. Yourself and Sheikh Khalid provided valuable insights (where to eat, where to go, what to do, when to do certain rituals, what were the best times, etc) every step of the way. In truth, we were prepared for a haphazard experience in this regard (given what we were told by other Hajjis) but we were happy with pretty much all the arrangements. I cannot express by the way, how much we admired your patience with us during this time. As I understand it, people make comments (sometimes intending something other than what is expressed), but you took everything in stride & dealt with all of us magnanimously.
After Hajj the experience simply kept getting better & better. Not only did we stay at some of the best hotels we have ever had the pleasure of visiting, but the location of (both Makkah & Medina) hotels was exceptional. The food (at all 3 hotels and mina tents) was superb. The fact that we visited Medina after Hajj worked alot in our favour as we got all the tiredness out of bodies.
I think it was all made possible by your personal attention to details and clear briefings before and during the trip.
To sum it all it was an experience that we have recommended to friends and will gladly recommend to others. We congratulate you on eliminating frustrations and making this Hajj a deeply spiritual experience.
Improvements for future: If Aziziah apartments were closer to Haram, it would allow opportunity to offer all prayers in the Haram. But I understand it's proximity to Jamaraat made it tremendously easy for us to visit after Ramee.
(Reply from Crescent Tours: The reason why we use Aziziyah Apartments closer to Jamaraat is because our main activities during Hajj will be around Jamaraat & Mina area and by having this accommodation closer to Jamaraat, it acts like a second home which you can use to come and relax, have a shower, get your laundry done, etc. In any case, our Hotels after Hajj are right inside the Haram Complex where you will get plenty of opportunity to visit Haram once the main Hajj rituals are finished.)
Not that it was a problem, but some forewarning about Muzdalifah's sleeping arrangements wouldn't go amiss. I understand it simply adds to the experience (and believe me, what we experienced there - we wouldn't have it done any other way), but I can understand if some older families would prefer to be advised that there's no set sleeping location in Muzdalifah (if they aren't aware of this already).
(Reply from Crescent Tours: We do inform in our Hajj briefing before we depart Australia about the facilities in Muzdalifah but sometimes with the amount of information that the Hujaj are deciphering, its sometimes forgotten. However will make an effort to stress on this fact in future.)
More time with Ziyarat (perhaps split into 2 days where we can spend more time at each location?). Given the fact that we really only had time between Fajr & Dhuhr, it felt like we rushed through some of the Ziyaratain where we would have liked to spend more time (the different Masjid in Medina, perhaps an organized climb to Ghar e hira)
(Reply from Crescent Tours: We would love to have more time in the ziyarah tours but most of the Hujaj wants to return back to the Haram before Zuhr. Organising on 2 different days will be a logistic nighmare as its not easy to get Buses into the area where our Hotels are located due to their proximity to the Haram. Regarding organised climb to Ghar-E-Hira, we will have people who are aged and also sometimes handicapped and they wont be able to climb and its not fair on them to made to wait on the ground when the rest of the group is allowed to climb the peak of the mountain which takes about 45 minutes each way. What we advise is to come back on your own on one of the subsequent days by hiring a Taxi which generally costs $10 per Taxi.)
I have attached some pictures from our wonderful experience. Please let me know if you want to upload a review or pictures somewhere specific.
Thank you Masood bhai and please convey our special appreciation and gratitude and salaam to Sheikh Khalid. We will Insha’Allah see you both again.
HAJI SABER & HAJA FATEN SAAD, SYDNEY HAJJ-2013
Hamdullah we have settled down and overcome jet lag. We would like to thank you and Sheikh Khalid for all your efforts and guidance during our Hajj.
We thoroughly enjoyed this Hajj trip and hope that Allah accepts all our prayers and Dua. We were impressed and pleased by the accommodation in both Mecca and Medina. The only negative feedback was the location of the accommodation in Aziziyah, it was a difficult challenge. Also the quality of the buses during transfers requires upgrading (especially the last bus trip).
(Reply from Crescent Tours: We will endeavour to get more easily accessible accommodation in future. Regarding the Buses, its not in our hand. We pay the Hajj Authorities for all the transportation and they send the Bus & sometimes if we are lucky, we get good Bus and sometimes outdated Buses.)
However the friendships that we made within the group during this trip are priceless and we really hope that we all keep in contact. A reunion would be great.
Thanks once again, we look forward to using your agency to book future trips and we will be recommending your tours to all our friends.
Hajj Saber and Haja Faten Saad
FAISAL QURESHI, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2012
When we were reviewing information, advice and references for different tour operators the one thing that stood out the most for Crescent Tours from other more popular operators was the information displayed on the website regarding Hajj. Especially, in regards to the details given about the tour itself such as details regarding what is included in the price, the itinerary, a FAQ page, hotel information etc. For us this was the main selling point because we felt comfortable knowing exactly what was being offered.
The other great thing about Crescent Tours was Masood Sahib always answered the phone to help answer any queries or questions I did have. When we finally did commit to going with Crescent we always knew what was required next and when, for example submitting the passports and visa applications. Plus Masood Sahib came with us on the Hajj! I never expected the tour operator to go along with his customers, which added further to our confidence.
In Saudi, we got the chance to interact with many other groups from Australia and again we sensed and experienced significant difference in the organization of our group vs. other groups. On Hajj, everyone is tested with patience, we too had a couple of instances where we had to wait long hours (eg: post immigration at Jeddah), but we were always kept up to date and this was a very reassuring feeling to have. Another example is during the time spent at Arafat and Muzdalifa, we were always well informed about where to meet, what to expect in terms of time and delays
Sheikh Khalid who attended with us on the Hajj was excellent. We received regular talks/information events about Umrah, Hajj, purpose of Hajj, useful duas to make, prior to beginning of Hajj and we also received talks during our time in Mina. We found Sheikh Khalid to be very friendly and engaging. He made himself available to answer any questions we had outside of these talks and we were able to develop a good rapport with him.
The hotels we stayed in post Hajj in Makkah and Medina were both excellent and exactly as offered on the website.
I highly recommend Crescent Tours to anyone looking to perform Hajj in the coming years. Organisation is excellent, the size of group (approx 70) is just right, the price may be higher compared to other tour offerings, but what we received in return is more than what I imagined. We were very grateful that we had a trouble-free Hajj.
One last thing piece of advice I would give to potential new Hujjaj; prepare as much as you can in terms of studying about the Hajj and its significance, as well preparing physically for the long walks (from Mina to Arafa, doing tawaf at the Haram on the roof, Saii between Safa and Marwa).
I personally listened to the Hajj/Umrah talks found on
www.sacredlearning.org/hajj-and-umrah . I found these to be very informative and extremely useful for anyone learning about the Hajj from scratch.
DR. ASHRAAF & SIS. AADILAH, BRISBANE-2012
I hope and pray that this email finds you in the best of health.
I am writing to you to thank you, on behalf of my wife and I for organising our Hajj trip. We were thoroughly pleased with the service and although we faced some health issues we are happy and thank Allah for allowing us to accomplish Hajj.
I would like to congratulate Crescent Tours for your selfless work and all the sacrifice you have made to make sure our Hajj goes well. A special thanks goes out to Sheikh Khalid for his beautiful lectures and for being so approachable.
I would gladly recommend your services to future pilgrims. We are grateful to you for having organised the best hotels and accommodation (with meals) for us. The Aziziyah Apartments were a great experience and we are thankful that all meals were provided. The Raffles Hotel was amazing and the view of the Kaaba second to none.
The Shaza Hotel in Madinah was very close to the Haram and very comfortable.
I pray that Allah SWT reward you for your work and we are forever grateful.
Dr. Ashraaf and Sis. Aadilah
DR. JILANI, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2012
Alhamdulillah we are all doing well and back to work. The cough is still lingering around but nor causing too much trouble :) I am back at work and so is Suzanna. Words cannot express how grateful we are to you for making our trip such a memorable one. We have already told our friends about the fantastic job you have done and been recommending you to our friends already. You have worked very hard to deliver us such fantastic service and may Allah reward you for such dedication. We personally do not feel there were any shortcomings, and if there were any, then Allah wanted it to be that way so we can have more patience. Sheikh Khalid has also been incredible, and importantly, we have found a friend in him. A friend we can turn to for any advice we need.
Kind regards and may Allah give you the strength to keep up the great work.
SHAHBAZ RAFIQ, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2012
First of all we are very thankful to Allah who has granted us this opportunity to perform Hajj this year and we ask Him to not only help us to maintain our level of Imaan and also invite us again. Me and my wife found the Hajj experience extremely pleasant and we were very satisfied with your service in terms of accommodation, transportation and meals.
Allhumdulillah we are very happy and wish to travel with your group again Inshallah. And we hope we get the same sort of remarkable people with us in our group
Inshallah as we did this year. Please pass on our Salams and regards to every single one of the people in our group who made our Hajj experience as enjoyable as it was. We pray to Allah if it is possible that we could get together and go to Hajj again, Ameen. We don't especially want to forget to mention Sheikh Khalid's remarkable knowledge and wisdom granted to him by Allah and he has helped us throughout the whole trip.
May Allah reward him immensely and make him more knowledgeable, Ameen. And yes, Sheikh Khalid was right in saying that the best time we had was the time we spent in Aziziyah Apartment.
Jazakallahukhair, Thank you and Assalamualaikum
ABDUL & MUNAH, PERTH-HAJJ 2012
Myself Abdul and my wife Munah both very much appreciate and thank you for your services and maybe in few years come for the future Hajj trips, we know where we can contact you. We are missing all the brothers and sisters get together at Aziziyah Apartment, feeling sad and sorrow, when shall we meet again. My wife Munah have suggested in future maybe you can have a Lady to co-ordinate in the women side, for men already have Sheikh Khalid Shah, just a suggestion
Abdul & Munah
REINA, CANBERRA HAJJ-2011
My husband and I would like to thank Br Masood for a wonderful first hajj experience we had this year (1432H/2011) with the help of Crescent Tours. We couldn’t be more impressed with the service his company offered from the time we made the initial enquiries to the completion of the trip. Br Masood is very good at keeping us informed at all times, he’s very truthful and punctual with his telephone calls, email responses and always conducts himself in a professional manner.
We received everything that was promised in the package if not a lot more than what we asked for. We love the location of the Aziziyah apartment, although extra space in their dining room would come handy to fit everyone in, otherwise we had a pleasant stay. The food in Aziziyah was alright, by the third day I was all curried out. So it was nice when Br Masood balanced it out with curry-free-day menu on the last couple of days (he read my mind there with the Al Baik chicken for dinner). The Movenpick hotel in Makkah was super nice in every aspect, we only have good comments about it. I quite like the location of our Madinah hotel, it was a direct route and only a few blocks away from the women entrance of the prophet’s mosque. The room was a little bit smaller compared to the Movenpick’s, just enough to swing a cat but we were not there to admire the structure of the hotel and its contents.
Whilst in most cases it was beyond the Crescent Tours’ control and it is unfair to hold Br Masood solely responsible for it, the chaotic exit process out of Jeddah airport and transportation arrangements while in Saudi were somewhat challenging for us. It is almost a crime to mention this little hiccup, as we all know how much time and effort Br Masood invested in the group which would have put other hajj operators to shame. It would not go unnoticed how Br Masood walked us virtually hand in hand from our Aziziyah apartment to Mina and Jamarat and vice versa on several occasions. At one time we could not locate an ATM near the Mina/Jamarat area and Br Masood personally lent us 100 riyals to purchase a late night snack which we believe went far beyond what a normal travel agent would have done in this situation (also thank you for lending us your iPhone when we were in such a need). We think that Br Masood and his boutique company have set a new benchmark in customer service excellence.
Our Mina experience was somewhat better than our initial expectation, the tents were perhaps a little bit luxurious compared to what some other countries had. Toilets were challenging especially during peak hours, not sure if Crescent Tours have much influence on the facilities in Mina, though, I was curious if breakfast, lunch and dinner menus in Mina could have been made varied and made small in terms of the size as we wasted so much food while staying there. Perhaps this, together with the chaotic entry process to the country could be incorporated in the company’s feedback if the Saudi government is seeking a room for improvements in the future.
Ziyarath tours were short and sweet we seemed to run out of time in some cases but personally I prefer not to miss a fard prayer if we had to prioritise. In regards to access to spiritual enrichment during hajj we were very pleased to have a dedicated sheikh to help with our concerns and queries, I believe not all hajj operators provide this kind of extra service. Although, it would have helped to have a structured spiritual program communicated to us as part of the package and made known prior to the departure so we’d all know what to expect. I also wished that we had more frequent talking sessions (khutbah) especially involving the female group but this is just my view which may not necessary a reflection of the group’s view. Nevertheless we were very happy with how approachable and patient our Sheikh Khalid was to our needs.
In conclusion, we had an overall excellent hajj experience with Crescent Tours and would like to extend our personal thanks to Br Masood and Sheikh Khalid to help making our hajj experience very spiritually uplifting and memorable. We have recommended the service of Crescent Tours to some people we know and will continue to spread the good word about it to everyone else. I wish Br Masood the very best of everything in the future and may Allah reward him with the goodness of this world and hereafter.
ZUBEDA, SYDNEY HAJJ-2011
Thank you very much for the wonderful experience we have had during our Hajj Tour to Mecca and Medina. Overall the experience had been great. More specifically, your communications with us via email and phone (including text messages) kept us well informed - a very important aspect when we are undertaking a journey of a lifetime to a new place. Singapore Airlines was great, the transit facilities were good. The food in Aziziyah was excellent, although sometimes delayed due to traffic closures. We were also given a laundry service, which was excellent. Facilities in Mina were acceptable, although it could have been better if the toilet facilities are upgraded. For this reason going from Mina to Aziziyah and back was a good alternative, however, a road map would have helped us from walking in the opposite directions, at times! If these can be taken care of , the HAJ experience will be a whiz as both the hotels Movenpick in Makkah & Radisson Blu in Madinah were just excellent. Transportation during Haj, to and from Mecca had been a nightmare at times (after Muzdalifa going to Mecca for tawaf and coming back had been a problem), all other times the transportation were good and punctual. The conduct of Ziarath tour was good. The group leader was always accessible and attended to all enquiries and resolved problems whenever required. However, talking with other group members, we found our group had far better facilities, so we would like to say thank you for keeping up with your promise for providing a better service. Further, the interaction amongst the group members had been very friendly. We have come back home with memorable experience which we continue to share with our families and friends. So much so, we are thinking of going again, perhaps in a few years time, if not earlier!
By the way, Abdul and I will be hosting a dinner for all the Sydney Hujajs towards end of December and if others from interstate are able to come, they are more than welcome.
ABDUL SACUR (Dado) & SAFIYYA, BRISBANE-HAJJ 2011
My wife and I were very pleased with the service that Crescent Tours provided to our Group. We definitely appreciate all the hard work and effort that they put into making it a success. Everything went better than expected and allowed us to have a nice and peaceful Hajj experience. Thanks again to Crescent Tours and specially Brother Masood for looking after us. To top it of my request for Magaz Fry was fulfilled on the last day in Aziziyah Apartment.
Abdul Sacur (Dado) & Safiyya
WAQAR ALI, SYDNEY-HAJJ 2010
I had a good experience considering it was my 1st experience. I found Masood a friendly and helping person and not greedy & timely guidance & instructions were arranged. A little more communication would have been better but we can understand its not always possible. Everything was provided as per the advertised items, however, transport at Mecca could/should be organised in a better way. Accommodation after the Hajj at Movenpick Hotel was very good, clean & convenient as it was within the courtyard of the Haram and well served compared to other Hotels. Madina was ok but not as good as Mecca. At Mina, it was hot for some people and cold to others. Room mates should be checked for snoring and other habits etc. I would recommend anybody to deal with this Company based on my experience and considering Masood's dealing and overall better kept promises,