Travel intent serves as a critical barometer for understanding the pulse of the tourism industry and predicting consumer behavior. The Muslim Travel Intent Trend (MTIT) score offers a valuable quantitative measure of travel intent among Muslim consumers, primarily focusing on their willingness to engage in travel activities within the next six months. This analysis delves into the MTIT score for October 2023, uncovering significant trends and factors that shape travel preferences in the world of Muslim-friendly travel.
This survey was done before the current crisis in the Middle East started. The impact of that on travel will only be known in the November MTIT survey.
The MTIT score for October 2023 stands at 77.3, which is a slight uptick from September 2023's score of 76.8. To understand this score in depth, let's consider the historical trends and context.
August to October typically show an upward trend in MTIT scores, possibly influenced by the upcoming holiday season and post-summer vacation planning. This was observed in 2021 as well, where the scores progressed from 65.7 in August to 74.0 in October.
The score for October 2023 is slightly lower than the score of January 2022 (77.3), indicating that the travel intent is almost at par with the beginning of the year.
Comparing year-on-year, there's a noticeable increase in the MTIT score for October 2023 (77.3) compared to October 2021 (74.0). This could be indicative of a growing travel intent among Muslim consumers, possibly influenced by factors like improved travel conditions, the easing of travel restrictions, or increased consumer confidence.
The highest MTIT score for the year was observed in July 2023 at 82.7, influenced by the peak summer holiday season. The score has since been on a gradual decline, reaching 76.7 in September. However, the slight increase in October indicates a resurgence of travel intent, likely influenced by upcoming holidays and year-end plans.
The scores in the latter half of 2023 (from June onwards) have been consistently higher than the first half of the year. This could be attributed to a mix of factors, including the summer season, the easing of pandemic-related concerns, and growing optimism in the travel industry.
Based on the trend, we can anticipate that the MTIT score might see a further increase in November and December, influenced by the holiday season. Historically, December 2021 had an MTIT score of 77.7, and it's plausible that December 2023 might surpass this figure.
Intent to travel in October 2023 (49.3%) remains stable, with a slight increase as people might start planning for end-of-year holidays.
There is no major changes to the radar chart based on historical data from MTIT to compare travel intent across each month. The chart shows each month's travel intent relative to December, which has the highest intent.
Intent to travel in the next 1 to 3 months shows a stable trend from September, suggesting that the intent during December remains consistent.
Comparing the data for the previous months, October's figure is consistent with September's 10.4%. Both of these months witnessed the lowest intent for the year in this category.
The intent for travel in this range has seen a steady decline since July 2023's 16.8%, indicating that as the year progresses towards its end, travelers are less inclined to plan trips for the first half of the next year.
October's data suggests that travelers are not actively planning trips for the January–March 2024 period. This can be attributed to several reasons:
October's data for the "Intent to Travel After 3 Months Up to 6 Months" category signals a potential decrease in travel demand for the early months of 2024. This trend is consistent with the cyclical nature of the travel industry, where post-peak season months often witness reduced planning for future trips. For businesses, understanding this pattern is crucial to adapt strategies, optimize offerings, and ensure sustained customer engagement during potential off-peak periods.
In the MTIT October survey, it's evident that Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Turkey or Türkiye are the top three preferred destinations for Muslim travelers in the upcoming months. These choices are influenced by several compelling factors.
Firstly, Saudi Arabia holds immense significance for Muslims, with the cities of Mecca and Medina attracting pilgrims year-round. In October, the temperature becomes cooler and the crowds are a bit lighter, making it an ideal time for Umrah (lesser pilgrimage) and religious visits.
Additionally, the UAE offers a diverse blend of modernity and tradition, with attractions like Dubai and Abu Dhabi making it a year-round destination. As for Turkey, its historical and cultural richness, combined with pleasant autumn weather, appeals to travelers seeking both spiritual experiences and leisure.
In conclusion, the October 2023 MTIT score of 77.3 showcases a relatively stable travel intent among Muslim consumers. It's important to recognize that various factors, including seasonal transitions and economic considerations, contribute to travel decisions. This score highlights that, even in the autumn months, there is a substantial interest among Muslim travelers in exploring new destinations and experiencing unique adventures. As we continue to navigate a dynamic travel landscape, understanding these travel intent trends is essential for both the travel industry and consumers looking to plan their journeys.
Read our collection of Muslim Travel Intent Tracker (MTIT) reports for different months here: