Q: Is Zakat due on money saved for Hajj?
A: All savings are Zakatable. However, if any debt has been incurred and is due, such as outstanding (and not expected) booking payments, such debts can be deducted from one’s Zakat calculation.
A price quotation for an estimated hajj package is not zakat deductible as the price may be subject to changes later on. We therefore recommend that you only account for the final invoice confirming all the Hajj related costs for the current/relevant period to deduct from your zakatable assets.
If your savings were in relation to a hajj you intended to perform in the distant future (say 2-5 years or so from now) and you have the money at the time of your zakat anniversary (now), zakat is due on these savings because you are in physical possession of the cash, assuming also your assets are over the nisab amount. This makes you liable for zakat in that year.
One point worth considering is if this is NOT your first hajj the costs should not be zakat deductible. This is because Hajj is only obligatory if it is your first time, you can afford it and are able to do so for health and other valid reasons. Your subsequent hajj will only be voluntary and thus any such expense/liability should not be deducted. As for Zakat, it comes before Hajj, and is obligatory upon you at each anniversary date the moment your assets have reached nisab or above.
And Allah knows best!
Reviewed on 09/11/2021