Expert: religious tourism traditions will continue to increase

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Illustration by Feri Fenoria

UNAIR NEWS – Economist from Universitas Airlangga, Tanti Handriana said that unlike tourism in general, religious tourism has its characteristics. The participants are Muslims from various demographic levels. They have variations in age, occupation, gender, income, domicile, and so on. For this reason, he and his team examined the antecedents of Muslim / Muslim women who undertook religious tourism to the graves of saints and revealed their level of satisfaction.

From the research, Tanti said that managers of religious tourism destinations must understand their consumers, especially Muslim women. The studies are motivating people in religious tourism, the benefits of participating in religious tourism, availability of religious facilities and infrastructure in religious tourism destinations, availability of halal food sellers and souvenirs, their satisfaction, and their intention to re-visit religious tourism destinations in the future.

“The results of the analysis shows that the interest of Muslims in Indonesia to take pilgrimage tours (wali songo and wali limo) is very large, and will continue to increase in the future,” said Tanti.

“The participant said they were satisfied with the religious tourism destinations, and they intended to participate in religious tourism. Thus a great opportunity for religious tourism business players to gain even more markets, “he added.

From that research, Tanti and the team found a variety of motives behind tourists following religious tourism and starting from increasing faith and devotion, getting the peace of mind and guidance from God.

The benefits after participating in various religious tourism are it creates a sense of peace of mind, feels more aware of death, a desire to continue the struggle of the saints, and becomes more devoted to God.

From the research, the facilities and infrastructure in religious tourism destinations have experienced significant improvements compared to five years ago, even with the availability of food, beverage, and affordable souvenir.

Nevertheless, said Tanti, some infrastructure facilities need to be improved. Among other things related to the cleanliness of the bathroom and ablution facilities. “We also need awareness from tourists to maintain personal hygiene and the environment,” she said.

For marketing practitioners, the results of the studies can be used as consideration for continuing to improve services in the field of religious tourism in the country. Given, the potential for developing is very large.

“Likewise, this study’s contribution to the development of marketing science, specifically related to marketing management in religious tourism services,” Tanti added. (*) Author: Binti Q. Masruroh Editor: Khefti Al Mawalia

Author: Binti Q. Masruroh

Editor: Khefti Al Mawalia

Reference:

https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/JIMA-10-2018-0188/full/pdf?title=exploration-of-pilgrimage-tourism-in-indonesia

Tanti Handriana, Praptini Yulianti, and Masmira Kurniawati . 2019. Exploration of Pilgrimage

Tourism in Indonesia, Journal of Islamic Marketing: 1759-0833.

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