martes, 7 de octubre de 2014

What is Halal Tourism?

The term ” halal tourism ,” which refers to the tourism offerings for practicing Muslims, represents a turnover of € 103 billion worldwide. This is a market that Spain wants to take a bigger share, thanks in particular, to its rich Islamic cultural heritage in Andalusia. Hence the organisation of the first conference on the subject in Granada on 22 and 23 September 2014 , where Alhamratour was present, under the auspices of the Halal Institute Cordoba was held.

SPAIN . The Alhambra in Granada, the Cordoba Mosque , the Giralda in Seville … the list of great monuments of Islamic cultural legacy in Spain is long.  The cultural wealth is mainly concentrated mainly in Andalusia, home to the recent ” halal tourism” International Conference held in Grenada by the London firm Creative Minds Media.

The Halal Institute of Cordoba advocates the development of one of the most promising tourist segments in the city. There are, obviously, quite a few reasons for this. First, because Spain, and, particularly, Andalusia, is a popular destination for Muslim tourists because of its 800-strong history. Second, it is the economic activity related to this type of tourism that justifies the development of a ‘ Halal tourism offering “, ie : a tour offering for practicing Muslims, particularly from clients in the Middle East . These tourists spend twice as much as the average in Spain , according to figures from Turespaña. Tourists from Saudi Arabia, for example, spend a budget of € 2,287 per person on their holiday, against 2,116 for those in the UAE , or € 1,703 for the Egyptian tourist. Compared with the average amount of € 956 per person spending for all holidaymakers in Spain, the amount spent by the Muslim tourists from the oil-rich Gulf states is much larger which can not be ignored.
Alhamratour in the Halal Conference 2014 in Granada (HTC2014)

The ” The Muslim Travel Index 2014″ study, presented in Granada during this international conference halal tourism, reveals another significant figure : aggregate expenditures on Muslim tourists represent a business volume of 103 bn € in the world . A big market where Spain wants to take more space . If the country is the world’s third -largest number of international tourists, it ranks only sixth place ranking Muslim tourists ( including behind France , Italy and Great Britain). Hence the importance for the Spanish tourism industry forward in welcoming Muslim tourists practitioners , representing about 10% of travelers in Andalusia, and an annual turnover estimated at € 387 million. In this sense, the Halal Institute of Cordoba has an important role as a body of recognized certification. Although the number of ” halal ” facilities so far remains very limited in the tourism sector in Spain , with only two restaurants and a hotel in Andalusia.

Muslim tourists visitting and praying in the Granada's Mosque

However, the changes proposed by the Institute of Cordoba formations stir more curiosity hoteliers. Fittingly , the study presented in Granada also shows that tourists from the Middle East are those who spend the most in terms of accommodation in Spain, namely € 129 on average per person per night , in front of the Chinese and Russian ( respectively € 115 and € 91 ) . “This is to recognize that the efforts against Muslim tourists can go beyond food ,” says Muhammad Escudero, director of Halal Certification Institute Cordoba : ” It is often the small details to make considered very important for these customers, as signaling the direction of Mecca , the layout of prayer space , information in Arabic, or absence of alcohol and pork … “

"A guarantee of quality"

Since this summer , Alanda Hotel Marbella is the first certified “halal” Spain hotel. A four star hotel bought by Saudi group Al Fawaz Hokair a year ago, and that has made this certification a marketing argument , as evidenced by the sales manager , Ignacio Gimenez . ” We do not serve alcohol or pork , which attracted obviously Muslims around the world committed to their religion ; but beyond this halal deposit also appeals to a broad customer base that holds the beneficial aspect of the process, especially since the certification involves traceability and therefore guarantees quality.

The absence of alcohol is not a drawback . Sometimes it is an asset for a family , Muslim or not customers looking for a relaxing holiday while enjoying the service and installation of a four-star hotel , the spa or the beach restaurant . In short, the ‘halal’ certification is a further guarantee of attention here that shows this month (September) of 86% occupancy rate. Evidence that the commitment does not interfere with the activity.

"We announce our halal recess policy when making reservations , and we have never been abandoned or even the slightest criticism ; customers may be surprised , but it’s always positive ,"said Ignacio Gimenez . 

These reactions now allow the company to consider an international hotel development with the same positioning ” halal ” .

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