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Halal hotels of Turkey and rules of accommodation in them

Every year a growing number of Russians who prefer to rest on the concept of Halal tourism in Turkey…

Halal hotels of Turkey and rules of accommodation in them
In recent years, the demand for Halal hotels in Turkey and in the organized segment has been growing.
75 Turkish specialized Halal hotels work for tourists of all religions, ready to relax in accordance with Sharia
The market of Muslim (Halal) tourism in Russia has been developing even more dynamically in recent years than traditional types of recreation. According to experts, the UAE, Malaysia and Turkey are the most popular destinations for such a holiday among Russian tourists.

As for the most popular destination in Russia – Turkey, this country every year strengthens its position in the Russian market of Halal tourism. Now, according to Menzat Ozgur, a representative of the Turkish host company Tulpar travel, the main flow of Halal tourists from Russia to Turkey is generated by such Russian regions as Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, the republics of the North Caucasus and Crimea.

The first specialized network of Halal hotels began to open in Turkey in the early 2000s and managed to take a solid share of the Halal tourism market. According to Mr. Ozgur’s calculations, about four hundred specialized Halal accommodation facilities are now represented in the EMEA region, 150 of which are located on the territory of Turkey – in Istanbul, Ankara, on the Antalya and Aegean coasts. Half of these 150 hotels accept only Muslims who adhere to the strict rules of Islam. The remaining 75 hotels are open, including for tourists of other religions, ready to relax in accordance with the rules of Sharia.

At the same time, a couple of years ago, according to Menzat Ozgur, 80-90% of visitors to Turkish Halal hotels were domestic tourists (Turks), but today more than 60% of guests are Muslim foreigners. The flow of tourists from Russia in this segment also revived, the expert says.
More than 85% of Russian Halal tourists prefer regular flights with the appropriate choice of Halal food
The increased interest of Russian Muslims in Turkey as a destination of Halal tourism is promoted by the active development of the entire hospitality industry in the sector of Muslim travel. After all, Halal tourism means only accommodation in hotels that provide services in accordance with Islamic standards, and generally adapted to the Halal preferences of tourists infrastructure. In Turkey, almost everywhere there are restaurants and cafes created specifically for the rest of Muslims who observe Islam. Such restaurants and shops are rigorously tested to confirm that they provide services in accordance with Islamic standards.

But, despite the General trend of growing sector in Halal tourism, in the sector of organized tourism in Russia offers in this segment are limited. “According to my estimates, 99.9% of Russian tour operators develop this segment in a special way. As for Turkey, the matter is complicated by the fact that almost exclusively large Federal players are working in this direction. This highly respected and professional company, but the specifics of their core business is to focus on the production, Assembly-line product, and Halal tourism is still a niche story and the individual,” says Mentat Özgür.

To date, the Russian players in Turkey, there is no batch of proposals according to Halal rest, but the range includes those Halal hotels in Turkey, who accept the Muslims, and tourists of other religions. In this case we are talking about a specialized Halal tourism products and tourists just book the hotels that are available in the booking system of the tour operators.

Part of the need for foreign Halal holidays in Russia are closed by tour operators and travel agents. “If you need a hotel that is not in the range of tour operators, we book a hotel separately and a flight separately,” says Aleksan Mkrtchyan, Director of the network of travel agencies “Pink Elephant”.

Meanwhile, due to the fact that information about the possibilities of organized Halal tourism is poorly represented in the Russian market, most tourists who want to get this type of holiday, often turn either to narrow online services, or to specialized travel agencies in their cities, or directly to the Turkish travel company (DMC), engaged in the organization of Halal tours.

Companies like “Tulpar travel”, provide land service, provide insurance, and help with the booking of tickets. At the same time, Turkish DMC, specializing in Halal tourism, successfully cooperate with large local tour operators in neighboring countries with Russia – for example, in Kazakhstan.

According to Mr. Ozgur, in order to develop in this direction, the tour operator needs appropriate resources. Ideally, it is possible to create either separate departments or divisions within VIP-departments for such business. Tourists who choose Halal holidays are very demanding: they need, for example, an individual transfer, more than 85% of Russian Halal tourists prefer regular flights with an appropriate choice of Halal food.
Gambling may not be allowed on the premises of the Halal hotel. Women should not wear open clothes in the presence of other men, and men – to look at other people’s women
As already mentioned, Halal hotels in Turkey can be divided into 3 main types.

In a fully Halal-certified engines are subject to the following rules:

there is no alcohol on site;

in restaurants – Halal menu;

in the rooms – prayer paraphernalia (Quran, prayer schedule, prayer mats);

the rooms have an interior that complies with the laws of religion (there are no paintings, decorative items with images of people and animals or other content that is incompatible with Islamic ethics and norms);

a set of TV channels necessarily contains Islamic TV channels;

the public area of the hotel is free of social activities or limited spaces;

on the territory of the hotel or near must be a mosque, as well as pointers to the direction of Mecca and the time of prayers;

mandatory condition: separate for men and women SPA-centers, swimming pools, beaches, fitness rooms.

During the Holy month of Ramadan, iftar and sukhur (meals after sunset and before dawn during lent) are organized for guests. Often these hotels also provide guests with specialized religious tours.

The second type – Halal-hotels that accept, in addition to Muslims, tourists of other religions. Such hotels have, as a rule, Halal certificates only for a number of services and menus.

The set may vary from hotel to hotel. For example, gambling may be prohibited on site. Women should not wear revealing clothing in the presence of other men, and men – to look at other women. As for alcohol, in hotels where strictly adhere to the laws of Islam, for “ordinary” tourists can be bars with alcoholic beverages – just Muslim believers ignore them.

As for the geography of accommodation Halal hotels, it looks like this. About 70% of Halal accommodation facilities are urban hotels, most of them are located in Istanbul. Beach Halal hotels (23%) are located mainly on the Antalya coast (most of them – in Alanya), they also have on the coast of the Aegean (Marmaris) and the Black sea (here the Russians rarely reach).

The third, the smallest (7%) type of Halal hotels in Turkey are thermal hotels, most of which are located in the province of Afyonkarahisar in Western Turkey.
Halal hotels in Turkey, presented by mass Russian tour operators in the framework of package tours
Consider completely Halal hotels – both those in which tourists of other religions can not book a room, and hotels, the doors of which are open to all tourists.

If we talk about the prices of Halal hotels, the average cost of living in a hotel where observe the traditions of Islam, higher, primarily due to the quality of food. Family room (family), for example, in a five-star Halal hotel in Turkey will cost at least $ 150 per day.

Some Halal hotels available to Russians as part of package tours:

Rixos Downtown 5*

Located in the center of Antalya on a hill near the famous Konyaalti beach and offers magnificent views of the Mediterranean sea and the Taurus mountains. The hotel offers easy access to Migros shopping center, an aquarium, a Dolphinarium and a amusement Park. All the food is Halal. There is an outdoor pool (heated in cold weather) and an adjoining children’s pool. Private pools, SPA or beaches are not available for women or families.

Sports facilities include a tennis court, Cycling, aerobics, table tennis and Darts. The staff speaks Turkish, English and Russian. For children there is a mini club, a Playground, animation staff and a children’s pool. Recommended for both business trips and for a relaxing holiday. There are bars on site that offer alcohol for non-Muslim tourists.

Ramada Plaza 5*

The hotel is located in the centre of Antalya, far from historical monuments of culture and entertainment. Views of the Mediterranean sea and the Taurus mountains can be enjoyed from all rooms. Total area 8500 sq. m.

The hotel consists of one 17-storey building (70% of rooms with partial or direct sea views). Meals: BB, HB, AI, UAI. For children there is a kids club and a children’s pool. Towels on the beach for free, beach bar, umbrellas, sun loungers, mattresses – free of charge. The gym is free. Free Wi – Fi is available on site.

Orka Sunlife Resort 5*

Located in scenic Fethiye, the hotel is a 7-minute drive from Oludeniz beach. A public sandy beach is 2.5 km away. Shuttle bus to the beach (2 times a day). Sun beds, umbrellas, mattresses – for a fee.

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