Ram Mandir Inauguration : Accommodation prices hike in Ayodhya

January 22 declared as public holiday in Maharashtra

January 22 declared as public holiday in Maharashtra

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As the highly anticipated consecration ceremony of the idol of Lord Ram at the sanctum sanctorum of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya approaches in approximately 50 days on January 22, 2024, hotel rooms in the temple town have already reached near full occupancy. 

Despite the steep increase in prices, ranging from seven to 10 times higher than the usual rates, eager visitors have eagerly booked their accommodations.

There are approximately 10,000 rooms in Ayodhya, consisting of around 150 economy hotels, 30 dharamshalas (rest houses), and 20 luxury hotels, according to estimates. In addition to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will serve as the chief guest, the temple trust intends to extend invitations to distinguished individuals and more than 25,000 Hindu religious leaders from 136 ‘Sanatan’ traditions for the ceremony.

The temple trust anticipates a turnout of 10,000 individuals for the event within the temple premises. However, with the opening of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya on January 23, it is expected that thousands of pilgrims will flock to the site. In preparation for the inauguration, the trust has committed to providing food for one hundred thousand saints and devotees daily for a period of thirty days.

There has been a significant increase in prices for hotel accommodations, with very few options available for less than ₹3,000 after January 15th. A resident of Gomti Nagar in Lucknow, has been planning for a year to witness the consecration and has found it difficult to find affordable options. Some hotels have already claimed to be fully booked from January 18th to 31st, while others are charging significantly higher rates than usual.

According to reports, a hotel located 3 km from the temple on Ranopali bypass, bookings are now open but the rate is eight times higher than the normal daily room tariff of ₹1,000. From January 20 to 24, a room will cost ₹8,000, which is still lower than what other hotels are charging.

However, many hotels have either closed bookings on their websites or stopped collaborations with online platforms. There are also rumors that rooms are being sold on the black market, as hinted by people associated with the tourism and hotel industry in Ayodhya.

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