Is It Permissible to Pray in a Stationary Car?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

Question

Is it permissible to pray in a stationary car? If yes, what are the rulings regarding facing the Qibla?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Praying in a Moving Car

  • Nafl and Sunna Prayers: It is permissible to pray supererogatory (nafl) and Sunna prayers in a moving car, if one is outside of the city. One is not required to face Qibla in this situation. As for one who is inside the city limits, it is valid but prohibitively disliked to do so. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]
  • Obligatory and Necessary Prayers: As for obligatory (fard) or necessary (wajib) prayers in a car, it is only permissible in the case of necessity, such as fear, sickness, or the ground being so muddy that one’s face would be covered or soiled by it if they were to prostrate. [Ibid.]

Praying in a Stationary Car

It is not valid to pray any of the above types of prayer in a stationary car without a recognized excuse showing the necessity to do so. [Ibid.]

Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.