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When Can A Traveller Break His Fast?



For a traveller to break his fast, some conditions must be met.

His journey should be lengthy, or else be known as travelling,

And should go beyond the city and its suburbs.

His journey should also not be for sinful purposes or trying to get out of having to fast.

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The traveller is allowed to break his fast, according to the consensus of the ummah, whether is it difficult for him to fast or not.

(Majmoo’ al-Fataawaa, 25/210).

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Whoever intends to travel in Ramadaan should not intend to break his fast until he is travelling, because something may prevent him from setting out.

(Tafseer al-Qurtubi, 2/278).

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If he is flying, once the plane has gone beyond the city limits, he may break his fast.

If the sun sets and he breaks his fast on the ground, then the plane takes off and he sees the sun, he needs not to stop eating because he has already completed his day’s fasting.

If the plane takes off before sunset and he wants to complete that day’s fasting during the journey, he should not break his fast until the sun has set from wherever he is in the air.

(Fataawa of Shaykh Ibn Baaz, issued verbally).

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*On the duration of time when one is considered a traveller, the scholars differ.*

1. Some scholars mentioned that a traveller remains as such so long as he does not intend to settle in a place, or remain there indefinitely.

_”A person who leaves out on a journey to work (to another city), and he knows the exact length of his time away. For example, a person comes to a land to attend a conference (or a course) that lasts for three months, then such a person is considered a traveller who shortens his prayers because his journey has not come to an end.”_

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(Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymin’s Sharh ‘Umatul-Ahkām)

2. Some said that whoever travels to a place and intends to stay there for more than 19days must fast because of the report from Ibn Abbas that; *_The Prophet (ﷺ) once stayed for 19days and prayed shortened prayers. So when we travelled (and stayed) for 19days, we used to shorten the prayer but if we travelled (and stayed) for longer we used to offer the full prayer._*

Sahih al-Bukhari, 1080

3. Whilst others limited the time to 4 days.

_”If a traveller passes through a city other than his own, he does not have to fast, unless his stay there is longer than four days, in which case he must fast because the rulings that apply to those who are settled apply also to him.”_

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(Fataawa al-Da’wah by Ibn Baaz, 977).

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Whoever begins fasting while he is “settled” then embarks on a journey during the day may break his fast.

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A person who habitually travels is permitted not to fast if he has a home to which he returns, such as taxi drivers, pilots, and airline employees, even if their travel is daily – but they have to make up the fasts later.

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If nomadic Bedouins are travelling from their winter home to their summer home or vice versa, they are allowed to break their fast and shorten their prayers, but once they have settled in either their summer or winter home, they should not break their fast or shorten their prayers.

(Majmoo’ Fataawa Ibn Taymiyah, 25/213).

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If he starts Ramadaan in one city, then travels to another city where the people started fasting before or after him, then he should follow their ruling, so he should only stop fasting when they stop fasting, even if it makes his fasting more than 30days.

If it makes his fast less than 29days, he must make it up after Eid, because the Hijri month cannot be less than 29days.

(Fataawa al-Shaykh Ibn Baaz: Fataawa al-Siyaam, Daar al-Watan, pp. 15-16)

_To be continued… ان شاء الله_

May Allaah (ﷻ) have mercy on us and guide us through the straight path.



Edited by Islamic Ummah,

From “70 Matters Related to Fasting” by Sheikh Muhammad Salih Al Munajjid


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