From the four-fold price increase for admission, you'd think the Taj Mahal would rather not have you visit—and you'd be pretty much right, but oddly, the huge increase only applies to Indians; foreigners, who already pay more, will see rates go up by only 15%.
The Archaeological Survey of India, the government body that runs the UNESCO-listed site, says that "we want people to pay more to limit the footfall...This will cut down the number of visitors to the mausoleum by at least 15-20 percent and generate revenue for its conservation."
But while the rise for foreign visitors from about €14.50 to €16.50 will likely be easily absorbed, the rise for Indians from about 61 cents to €3.05 in a country where the average daily wage is €3.30, places a real barrier.
The hikes grow out of a concern to keep revenue up, while placing safety limits on the number of visitors. Last year, the Survey capped daily visitors at 40,000, a sharp reduction from the previous frequent crowds that hit 70,000, after a number of injuries and concerns about possible stampedes—but revenue also dropped.