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Knowing Halal Travel, Halal Hotels, and Halal Cruises: Effects on Accommodation and Hospitality Worldwide | Written by Adel Eldin and Fred DeMicco


Halal means lawful or permitted and the opposite of Halal is Haram which means unlawful or prohibited. The concept of Halal and Haram is Arabic. Therefore, what is allowed and not allowed is not only related to food, but also extends to all aspects of life including supplements, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, prenatal care products, and mouthwash.

Increasing global demand is driven by the increasing number and preference of consumers. The Halal ecosystem would not only serve the growing Muslim population but would serve non-Muslims who are attracted to Halal products, ethical Halal business, and financial services globally. This trend has accelerated with the COVID pandemic, especially the eCommerce industry has facilitated consumer access, especially to Halal-Certified food products (shop halal on Amazon).

The consumer demands healthy food and Halal is Healthy

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The global Halal market is expected to have an 11.24% annual growth rate from 2022 to 2027. Halal Market was valued at $7.2 trillion in 2020 and is expected to reach $11.2 trillion by 2028. The Halal ecosystem includes Halal food (food and beverage that is strictly prepared in accordance with Islamic dietary law (no pork, no alcohol, and no blood. Slaughtered halal animals go through two health checks as compared with a single inspection on non halal animals.

Halal Hotels

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These are hotels with special criteria used to rate the Hotel as (Halal) which includes Halal ( Wholesome, organic, healthy, permissible) food facilities with halal items in the mini bar (non-alcoholic drinks). Halal-certified food would give the highest Halal ranking for 100% Halal food in the entire facility. In addition, the Salah( prayer ) facility where there is a listing of Mosques in the vicinity, available information regarding the times of the five daily prayers, Quran copies, prayer mats, Qibla ( Direction of prayer ) facing Makka, in Saudi Arabia usually in the Northeast direction.

Services during the Holy Month of Ramadan to have basic items break the fast such as dates and water( meal called Iftar) at sunset time and the second meal called Suhur. served before Dawn prayer., Halal room service menu and possibly Shuttle service from the Hotel to and from local Mosques. The second criterion for a Halal Hotel is the Level of Non- Halal activities including night club, gambling, casinos, nudity, and adults with non-Halal friendly entertainment!

Separate spas, pools, and gyms for men and women. The majority of hotels can achieve these accommodations to be listed as ( Muslim-friendly or Halal Hotels) without significant structural changes, but there are some specialized Halal Hotels catering to Muslim-friendly requirements globally. Websites are now available such as ( Halal Booking.com), Halal Travel, and others having a friendly competition to serve the needs of these very fast-growing clients even in non-Muslim majority countries such as Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Spain, USA, and the United Kingdom in addition to traditional places like Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Egypt, and Morocco.

In Florida for example, there are listings for ( Halal food nearby), No Alcohol room within the Hotel, and modest swimwear, with a simple search for Muslim-friendly hotels showing 328 in Orlando location, 198 in Miami Beach, 143 in Jacksonville, and 120 in Tampa as these Hotels offer ( Halal meal plan), airport services, special Wedding and Honeymoon packages as competition grows for special deals offered by Hotels to attract more (Halal Business) clients. The Hotel can also be replaced by a villa for a private vacation home or a cabin or a resort for privacy. eHalal Hotels, Orlando, Florida operates as an online Hotel partner for Halal and Muslim-friendly Hotels in Orlando where consumers can check and compare rates of various Hotel packages.

The Global Hub for Wellness and Medical Tourism to offers culturally sensitive and Muslim-friendly services, provides training to staff on cross-cultural issues, and instills best customer service practices to help gain the trust of the Muslim traveler/guests and make them feel at home. (Visit www.floridamedicaltourism.com).

There is a Global Ranking for eight of the best Halal-only Hotels in the world as follows.

Number one is the Bermondsey Square Hotel in London, UK ( 5 stars) which has a Halal-friendly gym among hotel services including Halal-only food options, The Hotel does NOT serve alcoholic drinks!

Number two is the Vision Hotel Apartments, Abu Dhabi, UAE (5 stars) strategically located close to the iconic Sheikh Zayed Mosque and Al Manhal Palace.

Number three is the Mogador Palace Agdal, Morocco ( 5 stars) which has all Muslim Traveler amenities including a number of indoor and outdoor pools for adults and children.

Number four is Seige Beach Resort and Spa ( 5 stars) in Antalya, Turkey which can offer private beaches, and separate swimming pools for both men and women with a Modest dress code that is strictly followed on the beach. 100% Halal food offers a non-alcoholic atmosphere which is highly desired by Muslim travelers and families.

Number five is Aerostar Hotel, Moscow ( 5 stars) considered to be the best Halal-friendly Hotel in Russia which offers prayer facilities for both men and women and Halal-only food items.

Number six is Hotel Fouquet Barriere, Paris, France ( 5 stars) which offers the Muslim guest prayer mats, and a copy of the Quran in the Guest room.

Number seven is St. Regis Roma, Rome, Italy ( 5 stars) Hotel offers Halal-only food, an alcohol-free atmosphere, copies of the Quran, and female housekeepers!

Number eight is Hotel Munchin Palace, Munich, Germany which offers Halal-only food, non-alcoholic drinks, as well as female spa therapists for Muslim ladies. On-site Halal Cusine in Hotels, Resorts, and Spas can offer Lodging Advantage. https://www.hospitalitynet.org/opinion/4111071.html

Halal food and beverages, prayer facilities, modesty and privacy, family-friendly amenities including children's play area, gender-separate pools/spas/fitness facilities. No alcohol policy and cultural sensitivity as staff members are educated about respecting Islamic values, customs, and traditions. Offer weddings and event services, easy access to prayer facilities as Halal Hotels or Muslim-friendly Hotels could be located close to nearby Mosques and offer shuttle services to and from Mosques at times of prayer services. After all, the Halal Tourism Market is growing very fast and is expected to hit $ 341.4 Billion by 2030!

Food branded as Halal will attract many consumers of various backgrounds who will contribute positively to the economy of the host country as there are so many jobs being created supporting Medical and Wellness Tourism which would include Hospitality Business with Hotels, Restaurants, transportation, entertainment business, Health and Wellness, business with its various products and services as well as Tourism shopping.

Onsite ProntoCare clinics would offer a Halal competitive advantage in hotels, resorts, and spas and provide culture-sensitive training as well to ensure a positive visitor experience in these facilities. For more information on available franchise opportunities (https://prontocare.co/prontocare-franchise-model).

The Halal Cruise

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The Halal cruise does not only offer the possibility of traveling on ships offering halal food, but the cruises are alcohol-free, with prayer rooms, but also separate swimming pools for men and women along with Islamic values.

The Islamic cruise is usually combined with cultural and religious discovery trips by taking Muslim cruise passengers to coastal sites important in the history of Islam and excursions that are educational rather than just touristic tours.

The Halal cruise in 2023 is different from a conventional cruise so far as it is a cruise that allows Muslim vacationers to cross the ocean or the seas on a ship that offers vacation services that adapt to Islam. Such Halal cruises are offered by many travel agencies specializing in Islamic cruises.

The halal or Islamic cruise can also take place from a port that is not in the country of the Muslim traveler, it is for this reason that they will have to reach the starting point of the halal cruise by plane they can take with a Muslim-friendly airline.

Guests can participate in interactive sessions where they can learn how to cook traditional dishes from a particular region or country. Moreover, they can attend talks led by experts who discuss various topics such as art history, literature, music, and architecture.

The cultural and historical workshops also offer a platform for guests to engage with each other and share their experiences. The onboard activities allow individuals from diverse backgrounds to come together and appreciate each other’s cultures.

Furthermore, these workshops provide an excellent opportunity for families traveling with children to enhance their knowledge while having fun at the same time. Overall, these cultural and historical workshops enrich the cruise experience by offering a deeper understanding of different cultures across the globe.

For families with children, there are various options ranging from kids’ clubs to arcade games. The ship features a water park, complete with slides and pools that provide hours of fun in the sun for the whole family.

Adults can enjoy a range of activities as well, including fitness classes, spa treatments, and cooking workshops. There are also shows featuring live music, comedy acts, and theatrical performances throughout the day and night.

Moreover, joining group tours or excursions can also be an effective way to connect with other travelers. Group tours enable participants to explore new destinations together while enjoying each other’s company, thus creating a sense of community among Muslims from different parts of the world.

Meeting new people on a halal cruise can broaden one’s perspective on Islam and its diverse cultures worldwide while forging friendships that may last beyond the voyage itself. In essence, interacting with fellow Muslim travelers is not only an enjoyable aspect of a halal cruise but also enhances one’s travel experience by providing opportunities for cultural exchange and personal growth.

Other special events such as iftars (the breaking of fast) or tarawih (extra prayers held during Ramadan) may also be organized on board for passengers to participate in. Some cruises offer onboard lectures by Islamic scholars or visits to historical Islamic landmarks at ports of call.

Celebrating various ceremonies such as weddings ensures that Muslim travelers can stay connected to their faith while enjoying a social gathering during a relaxing vacation at sea.

World's First OIC/SMIIC Standard Halal-Friendly Cruise Ship. Royal Caribbean International provides a Halal-friendly cruise experience for its Muslim guests. Similarly, Disney Cruise, Celebrity Cruise, Dream Cruise, and Departing Cruises from The Middle East are just a few examples of Muslim-Friendly Cruises that serve Halal Food!

Halal Travel

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There is a projection of a further surge to 140 million Muslim travelers in 2023. By 2028, this segment is expected to contribute approximately $225 billion in expenditure. These figures underscore the economic vitality of this market and its potential to drive the global travel industry's rebound. It is projecting a further surge to 140 million Muslim travelers in 2023. By 2028, this segment is expected to contribute approximately $225 billion in expenditure. These figures underscore the economic vitality of this market and its potential to drive the global travel industry's rebound.

Despite the challenges posed by the global pandemic, the Muslim travel market has shown remarkable resilience. In 2022, with approximately 110 million Muslim travelers, representing a recovery to 68% of pre-pandemic levels. Understanding this market's complexities requires robust data analytics, and that's where The Newly developed Muslim Travel Intent Tracker (MTIT) is a useful tool. The MTIT is a monthly tracker designed to gauge Muslim consumers' changing preferences and travel intentions. This tool enables businesses to stay ahead of the curve and seize emerging opportunities in this dynamic market by providing real-time insights.

From the information presented above, one can see the common theme here for Halal hospitality as they compete locally and globally to offer competitive lodging, cruise ships, hospitality, and travel services.

References

  1. https://halalspy.com/which-cruise-line-offer-halal-food/
  2. https://latecruisenews.com/2023/06/02/resorts-world-cruises-awarded-muslim-friendly-cruise-line-of-the-year-at-the-halal
  3. https://www.adroitmarketresearch.com/industry-reports/halal-market
  4. https://www.kerry.com/insights/kerrydigest/2021/halal-food-industry
  5. https://www.halalrc.org/images/Research%20Material/Presentations/overview%20of%20global%20halal%20market.pdf
  6. https://www.hotel-online.com/press_releases/release/innovative-hospitality-and-lodging-medi-spa-solutions-during-covid-and-beyond/
  7. https://www.hotel-online.com/press_releases/release/franchised-on-site-hotel-medical-clinics-a-new-competitive-advantage-for-lodging-operations-with-hotels-bridging-healthcare-h2h/
  8. https://www.hospitalitynet.org/publication/4103956.html?2259453d583032d08ec9bd65268580b8
  9. https://www.hospitalitynet.org/publication/4103017.html?c3e39918b67cc6a11e37387cefa045fd
  10. https://www.hospitalitynet.org/opinion/4101155.html
  11. https://www.halaltrip.com/other/blog/muslim-travel-intent-tracker-mtit-september-2023/

Fred DeMicco
Northern Arizona University

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