He is studying in the west; should he offer the udhiyah (sacrifice) there or appoint someone to do it on his behalf in his own country?
What is prescribed is for the sacrifice to be offered in the place where the person offering the sacrifice is, as it is prescribed for the person offering the sacrifice to slaughter the animal himself and eat from it. The purpose of the sacrifice is not only to obtain the meat; rather the purpose is to make manifest this symbol of Islam.
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) used to slaughter the meat for the udhiyah and ‘aqeeqah in his house in Madinah and he did not send any of that to Makkah, even though it is superior to Madinah and there were poor people there who might have been in greater need than the poor of Madinah. Yet it was limited to the place where Allah prescribed the act of worship should be done. So he did not slaughter the hadiy (sacrifice offered by the pilgrim during Hajj) in Madinah and he did not send meat from the udhiyah and ‘aqeeqah to Makkah. Rather each type of sacrifice was slaughtered in the place where it was prescribed for it to be slaughtered. “The best of guidance is the guidance of Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and the worst of matters are those which are newly invented, and every innovation is a going astray.”
End quote from al-Muntaqa min Fataawa al-Fawzaan (50/10)
This is the basic principle, that a person’s sacrifices should be offered in the place where he himself is, and he should not appoint someone to do it on his behalf in another country. But if the one who wants to offer the sacrifice is in one country and his family are in another country, if he is able to offer two sacrifices, one in the country where he is and the other where his family are, then this is best. But if he is not able to do that, then there is nothing wrong with him sending money to his family so that they can offer the sacrifice on his behalf in their country.
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) was asked:
The worker who comes to this country is far away from his own land, and he has children there, and they are in greater need than those who are here. Is it better for him to offer his sacrifice here, or to send something to them so that they can offer the sacrifice on his behalf there? You know how great their need is in some Muslim countries.
What I think should be done in this case is to offer the sacrifice here and there. If he cannot do that, then he should offer the sacrifice there, so that his family can enjoy the meat of the sacrifice during these blessed days.
End quote from al-Liqa’ ash-Shahri (1/440)
He was also asked:
We are not among the people of this land, and it is no secret to you that our families are in great need of the sacrifice and to be able to benefit from the meat and skin. Most of them are poor. Can we send the price of the sacrifice to them, and appoint someone to do it on our behalf? Please note that the purpose behind it is to practice the ritual openly.
If a person is in one country and his family are in another country, there is nothing wrong with him appointing someone to offer the sacrifice on his behalf where his family are, so as to bring joy to his family and let them benefit from the meat, because if he offers the sacrifice in the foreign country, then who will eat of its meat? Perhaps he will not find anyone to whom he can give it in charity. Therefore we think that if a person has a family elsewhere, he should send them the price of the sacrifice, so that they can do the sacrifice there.
End quote from al-Liqa’ ash-Shari (2/306)
And Allah knows best.