In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, ensuring the safety and security of female pilgrims during Hajj and Umrah has become a paramount concern. Recognizing the importance of such issues, CrescentRating organized the Halal in Travel Global Summit in 2022 to bring together prominent voices to address the topic.
Distinguished speakers including H.E. Aziz Abduhakimov, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism and Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan, H.E. Dr. Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno, Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy of Indonesia, H.E. Dato' Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri, Minister of Tourism, Arts & Culture of Malaysia, H.E. Abdulla Mausoom, Minister of Tourism of the Maldives, and Keith Tan, Chief Executive of the Singapore Tourism Board, joined the summit alongside 60 other industry experts.
With the Muslim Women in Travel (MWIT) segment emerging as the fastest growing within the Halal Travel Market, addressing the specific safety and security needs is crucial. According to recent data, women travelers constitute approximately 45% of global Muslim arrivals, which amounted to around 72 million Muslim women travelers in 2019.
As Muslim travel enters the next phase of growth, catering to female travelers' unique needs and concerns has garnered increased attention. Let's examine the importance of ensuring safety and security for Muslim Women's travelers.
As travel becomes more common, Muslim women have become a valuable part of the industry, significantly contributing to many families' holiday decisions. With the aim of creating a more inclusive and welcoming environment for female travelers, the Halal Tourism industry has spared no effort in ensuring female safety and security, granting women the opportunity to take part in all aspects of the travel experience.
Providing robust safety measures and security protocols implants confidence among women travelers, empowering them to embark on Halal tours and explore various destinations with peace of mind. This confidence increase leads to enhanced travel engagement and repeated visits, which impact the growth of the Halal Tourism industry.
Hajj and Umrah hold immense religious significance for Muslim worldwide. Thus, ensuring the safety of women safeguards their ability to practice their faith freely and devote themselves to spiritual activities without any discomfort.
When exceptional destinations prioritize women's safety and security, they establish themselves as the legit location for Muslim travelers. Word-of-mouth recommendations and positive experiences shared by female travelers contribute to a good reputation within the Halal Travel Market.
The Covid-19 outbreak made it necessary to put in place more stringent health and safety regulations. By extending the rules to meet the issues faced by female travelers, the travel industry is seen to care for their well-being.
The authorities have implemented various initiatives and programs to address the specific needs of Muslim women. One such initiative is the Tawaf Establishment of Pilgrims from non-Arab African countries, which provides specialized services to female pilgrims from these countries. This includes accommodation, transportation, and guiding services.
Other initiatives include the Women's Section in Mina, which offers medical emergency services and facilities for prayers and rest exclusively for women. Such sections are staffed by female security personnel, nurses, and doctors, ensuring women have access to a safe and secure environment through their pilgrimage.
Additionally, authorities have taken steps to safeguard Muslim women's security and safety when traveling to and from different locations. This entails providing a dedicated transport service and ensuring female drivers are available to transport female pilgrims. The initiatives demonstrate the commitment of authorities to provide a secure environment, particularly in light of challenges posed by pandemics like covid-19.
Female-specific hotels and facilities are essential to maintaining the security and comfort of Halal Tours for women. Recognizing the importance of catering to women's requirements, various destinations and accommodations providers have offered dedicated female-only accommodations. These establishments provide separate rooms, and floors for female travelers, ensuring their privacy, comfort, and peace of mind. Such accommodations often have amenities specifically designed for women, including private bathrooms, prayer rooms, and women-only lounges.
Furthermore, female-specific facilities are being introduced to enhance the overall pilgrimage experience for women during Hajj and Umrah. These facilities encompass women-only prayer areas, washrooms, and rest areas. With ongoing pandemics, these facilities adhered to strict health and safety protocols, reassuring women during their journey.
Efforts to empower women during their pilgrimage experience encompass various initiatives to provide them with the knowledge, resources, and support to ensure a meaningful and empowered journey, even amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
One key initiative is the provision of educational programs and workshops designed only for women pilgrims. These programs offer various insights into the history, rituals, and significance of Hajj and Umrah, empowering women with a deeper understanding of their religious practices. Personal safety and self-defense workshops also equip women with the necessary skills and knowledge to navigate potential challenges and ensure their security during the pilgrimage.
Lastly, campaigning for women's participation in the decision-making process and other roles within the pilgrimage management organization is essential to empowering women. By actively involving women in positions like advisors, coordinators, and guides, their voices and perspective are amplified, leading to a more inclusive and representative pilgrimage experience. This empowers females to contribute actively, share their insights, and shape the future of Halal travel.
In summary, ensuring women's safety and security during Hajj and Umrah is paramount for the Next Phase of the Muslim Travel Market and Halal Tourism. With the challenges posed by pandemics, it is crucial to implement comprehensive measures, provide female-specific accommodations, and empower women through education and active participation.
For further insights on this topic, we invite you to watch the entire video summit to understand the significant strides being taken to safeguard women's well-being during sacred journeys on this page!