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EVALUATION OF THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF RELIGIOUS TOURISM -HAJJ- ON THE HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY (CASE STUDY OF BAUCHI STATE PILGRIMS)

ABSTRACT

The Hajj event takes place in the city of Bauchi, which is considered holy among the Muslim people in Bauchi State. The government and other stakeholders have enhanced security standards, to make sure that the pilgrims are safe during the Hajj event. The government of Bauchi has achieved this by deployment of plenty of security personnel who are being placed at different venues during the event. The population during the Hajj event is very big and sometimes hard for the security officers to take into account everything that goes on, to solve this, the planners have increased the number of surveillance cameras, which are placed everywhere. A case study approach was used to investigate and determine responses to various variables under study. The case study entailed the inquiry into the evaluation of religious tourism - Hajj event for its economic importance to hospitality industries and the development of Bauchi state. 

 

1.1INTRODUCTION 

Tourism according to MCINTOSH and Gupta (1977) as  any voluntary activity that temporarily takes  person away from his or her usual place of residence in order to satisfy a need either for pleasure, excitement, experience or relaxation. Tourism many be seen to consist senses of encounter in which visitors interact with their hosts.

Religious tourism, also commonly referred to as faith tourism, is a type of tourism, where people travel individually or in groups for pilgrimage, missionary, or leisure (fellowship) purposes. The world's largest form of mass religious tourism takes place at the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

Religious tourism has existed since antiquity. A study in 2011 found that 2.5 million people visited Karbala on the day of Arbaeen in 2013, pilgrims visited Jerusalem for a few reasons: to understand and appreciate their religion through a tangible experience, to feel secure about their religious beliefs, and to connect personally to the holy city.

The history of tourism could be traced back to the days when Jesus Christ was born. The birth of Jesus Christ which inside the three wise men to journey, from the east of Jerusalem to king to visit Jesus Christ with different gifts. Mathew chapter 2 (The holy bible), Tourism is said to be God’s own given gift to man, in the sense that any tourist attraction centre is beautiful, thrilling and a marvellous sight to behold which will leave you thinking of God’s great kindness to man. 

Religion according to Socrates (a greek philosopher, 1912) is defined as the practise that depicts the belief of people which are of more importance to their everyday life. It controls the laws, how you think and act, what you believe in, value etc. This have led to a dramatic increase in knowledge about their cultures, norms and also the establishment of economic and social histories of progress.

Hospitality industry, an aspect of Tourism which cannot be overlooked is defined according to “the prospectors act 1956. section 1 (3) as an establishment held our by the proprietors offering foods and drinks if so required sleeping accommodation without special contract to any traveller presenting himself to be in a fit state of mind to be received and is willing and able to pay for the services rendered to him by the establishment. Its history can be traced to the early civilization of the mind 16th century when the Romans built roads between the main cities and towns of the time along which posting houses known as stabuli were set up to provide holding, food drinks. Thus, Every city/town at this time had ale houses which provides only drink which later advanced to the building of what we now call the hospitality industry (hotel).

Therefore, as stated above, tourism religion and hospitality cannot separated from one another which means that the impacts one has on the other cannot be underemphasised.

The background of the study focused on the surrounding the situation i.e. the course of study and how the issues effect the followers of such religion more also, it will focus on the activities at the place of worship, likes for the leaders and some  moral acts that encourage people from religions activities. This study help to unveil the impacts that religious tourism has on hospitality industry.

 

1.2STATEMENT OF PROBLEM

According to Paneerselvam (2004: 24), being a major global/nation event that is attended by practically every race, The Hajj pilgrimage has some issues that need to be looked upon. The event takes place every year therefore this means that every year the State government has a chance of managing the event to enhance the living standards of the locals and for the nation as a whole. Most natives have a chance to make the event of great socioeconomic importance.

Every year, the Bauchi government is put to task. This is to say that the government has to ensure that the welfare of mass population of over one million is guaranteed. The government of Bauchi State has to ensure that the infrastructure of the state is well established to help facilitate the event. The government spends a lot of money just to ensure the success of the event that takes place annually. Therefore, a lot of money will go to waste for almost a week if there is no proper sustainable management of the event (Crane & Weber, 2012: 34). This study seeks to determine viable opportunities and economic impacts of Hajj event and how the event can be utilized for tourist attraction and hospitality industries, in Bauch State.

 

1.3OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY 

The study is aimed at find out how to develop tourism globally and also aimed at looking into the various economic impacts of religious tourism on hospitality industry.

It is hoped that through this study, tourists would have better understandings of religious tourism and its impact on hospitality industry as a whole. It is also hoped that through the findings in this study, people (tourists) would see the relevance of Religious Tourism.

 

1.4 RESEARCH/ HYPOTHESES QUESTIONS STATEMENT

1.What is the impact of Hajj pilgrimage to the local community and to hospitality industries?

2.Are there any motivation for people to embark on tourism?

3.Does religion motivate people to embark on tourism?

4.Does religion have an impact on tourism and hospitality industry? 

5.Are there any relationship between religious tourism, and the hospitality industry? 

6.Does government participate in the development of religious tourism?

 

1.5SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

The significance of the study is based on the fact that if findings of the researcher s are well implemented, it will facilitate and improve the development of Religious events and festivals towards tourism. It is hoped that this study would answer some questions of what impacts religious tourism have on hospitality industry. The study will also arouse researchers investigate ways of improving Religious Tourism.   

 

1.6LIMITATION AND SCOPE OF THE STUDY 

The research work is focused on the religious activities and events that takes place among the people of Muslim in bauchi State Nigeria and will shed more light on those who are religiously inclined and also examine and show the religious practises which have attracted people as part of tourism.

 

1.7DEFINITION OF TERMS 

Tourism Religion, Hospitality Industry, Tourist destination, Tourist attractions, Visitor, Tourist. 

Tourism: The relationship of phenomenon arising from voluntary travel and stay of an individual away from his/ her usual place of residence to a pre-determined destination in search of pleasure, leisure etc and are not connected with any remunerated activity.

Tourist:- This is an individual that is involved in tourism activities. According to MCINTOSH and Gupta (1999).

Visitor: - Is someone travelling from his place of usual residence to another place, but not primarily for tourism activities but enjoys such activities during his stay. (Unesco definition of tourism 2001).

Tourist Attractions:- These are the physical and natural images or activities that motivates people (tourists) for visit.

Tourist Destinations: - These refer to the places where the tourist attractions are located or sited.

Religion: These are set of rules that are taught which govern one to follow and to worship his/ her creator spiritually.

Hotel (Hospitality Industry): Is an establishment that renders the services of food and drinks, accommodation to people (tourists) who are willing and able to pay for the services rendered to them by the establishment.  

 

1.8 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

The research utilized the case study research design to carry out this study. This is achieved through investigating and evaluating the economic impact of religious tourism – Hajj to the hospitality industry and the development. In this study research, design is developed. Using research design assists to make the case study more understandable.

 This research work uses a survey methodology and comparative analysis to determine the elevation of the research state (i.e Its economic impact)


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