Mobile operator Beeline Uzbekistan has introduced a promotion of its roaming services in Saudi Arabia for the Hajj, the annual pilgrimage made by Muslims worldwide (this year it takes place 2–7 October, and the promotion will last from 3 September–31 October). A discount of up to 50 percent is being offered on mobile services in Saudi Arabia, valid on the network of Saudi operator Zain. The charge for incoming calls will be reduced from US $2.40 per minute to US $1.50 per minute, while outgoing calls within Saudi Arabia will cost US $1.50 per minute instead of US $1.80, and outgoing calls to Uzbekistan will be reduced from US $3.60 per minute to US $1.50.
Roaming charges are usually perceived by customers as relatively onerous, so any reduction is likely to please them. A culturally relevant promotion such as this one, targeted to a population whose needs the operator understands well, and targeted to a specific country for a specific religious purpose at a specific time, is especially likely to increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. It will also bring in revenue for both Beeline and Zain if it motivates enough customers to make enough calls to offset the cost reductions.