Female Muslim travelers have been playing a significant role in travel industry. In report on the 8th July by The Malaysian Reserve that tourism driven by female Muslim travelers.
Pear Anderson founding partner Hannah Pearson quoted a MasterCard Credit Rating Study in 2018 that said 63 million female Muslim travelers, between the ages of 18 and 40 years, spent a total of US$80 billion (RM334.5 billion).
She add “Female Muslim travelers are highly influential when it comes to travel decisions,”. In another statement from HalalTrip Strategic Partnerships and Projects lead Raudha Zaini said although most Muslim women (71%) travelled with their families.
Raudha added “We might see less family travel due to health and safety concerns for young children so, there would be more solo travelers being the biggest contributor to the tourism industry,”. She told also that 29% female Muslims travelled in all female groups, 28% travelled alone and 22% in mixed gender groups.
Apart from female travelers, ITC DG Datuk Dr Mohamed Razip Hasan said that the event also included female tourism workers. “To uphold Malaysia’s position as the top destination for Muslim travelers, we believe that women in the tourism workforce and women travelers play a key role and must be given special attention.
“The Islamic Tourism economy provides many opportunities for women to participate in tourism — both professionally as an industry practitioner and personally as a traveler,” he said.
Malaysia was rated as the No 1 destination for Muslim women travelers in the inaugural Muslim Women in Travel Report released in October 2019 by Crescent rating and MasterCard.
Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri the Minister of Motac said “While the concept is driven by the faith-based needs and requirements of Muslim tourists, it also encompasses prioritizing the safety, privacy and comfort of all women travelers,”
She encouraged making tourism safer, inclusive, meaningful and sustainable for both female travelers and tourism workers.
Another of ITC’s program is the Muslim-Friendly Accommodation Recognition program which recognizes hotels and resorts that cater to the Muslim tourist market. An example is accommodations with gender-separated facilities such as swimming pool and gym which benefits all women regardless of religion.
“Meanwhile, in terms of female tourism workers, they are the driving force of the industry as they represent 54% of the workforce globally. Their involvement provides necessary diversity and innovations that lead to improved corporate governance and financial performance, and a variety of products and services,” Nancy added.
She also highlighted that to understand female travelers, it is important to have women in the tourism workforce to give insights and perspectives.
“They would know how to cater to the female tourist market and would be able to share ideas and create products that cater to female consumers of all levels, be it solo travelers, mothers with young children, female business travelers, senior female travelers, and so on,” she said.
Nancy urged tourism industry players to provide greater support to ensure women are enable to continue their contribution to the tourism economy, and encouraged tourism industry players to address issues of gender discrimination, underrepresentation, and under-paying of women.