Taj Mahal Visitors Will Be Fined for Staying Longer Than 3 Hours
The Taj Mahal thinks visitors are overstaying their welcome.
In this week's battle against overtourism, the Taj Mahal has made yet another attempt to whittle down the nearly 50,000 visitors that pass through its doors every day.
Now, guests at the Taj Mahal will have a three-hour time limit when visiting the UNESCO World Heritage site upon entry. And if they exceed this limit, they'll be fined.
Vasant Swarakar, the superintending archaeologist of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Agra Circle, told The Times of India that tourists who spend more than three hours in the Taj Mahal will be charged an extra sum equivalent to the ticket, which will have to be paid at the exit gate. Visitors who don't show up for their designated time slot (which is specified on their ticket) will also not be allowed to enter the landmark.
As one of the most photographed landmarks in the world, the Taj Mahal has been fighting against overtourism with new rules and regulations for a while now. In an effort to decrease the foot traffic in December of 2018, the ASI increased the entry fee for Indian nationals to the Taj Mahal by 400%. For foreign tourists, the fee jumped a more reasonable 15%.
As of now, ticket prices for the landmark cost 1100 rupees ($15.75) for foreign tourists plus an additional 200 rupees ($2.86) to enter the mausoleum. Domestic tourists are charged 50 rupees with the same entrance fee for the mausoleum, according to Lonely Planet. With the new policy instated, a foreign tourist that exceeds their allotted time will likely have to pay an additional $15.75. However, it is still currently unclear how Taj Mahal staff members will be timing guests or enforcing these fines.