An international tour operator said, with the pandemic looming over vacationers, there has been growing interest in halal tourism which offers greater privacy.
In an interview with state-run Anadolu Agency, Emrullah Ahmet Turhan, secretary general of the Halal International Tourism Organization, said sub-category of tourism understands the need for privacy which gives it an edge in these uncertain times. Halal tourism offers tailor-made packages for holiday makers who abide by Muslim law, offering among other things stay in hotels which do not serve alcohol and seprate spa and pool facilities for men and women. Turhan said, with halal tourism, people can enjoy the summer vacation following social distancing rules. While speaking of Turkey, he said that more than 30 hotels have converted their facilities to halal tourism.
Turhan said in a statement, "The interest in halal tourism has gained momentum after the number of international travelers declined amid the pandemic. The owners of accommodation facilities are increasingly turning to domestic tourists to compensate for losses from the lack of foreign holidaymakers. Thus, there has been an increase in the number of hotels offering halal tourism services." He added that all the hotels are taking necessary measures against Coronavirus to ensure a safe stay for their customers.
Nothing that globally halal tourism is "serious business," he said in 2018 it reached a volume of 171 billion dollar. Sharing some more figures, he said 121 million Muslims worldwide travel to another country every year. "Some 8,5 million Muslims came to Turkey for vacations every year," he said, noting it made up 10% of global Muslim vacationers. He added with, every "halal" tourist on an average spends at least 1,296 USD in Turkey. He added that Turkey has potential to capture a larger share in the global halal tourism market.
Covid-19 which spreaded from China last year to more than 188 countries and territories triggering global fear and economic fallout as countries limit air travel and impose lockdowns to curtail its spread.
Tourism and air tavel are among the worst hit industries due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
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