Travel

The Man in Seat 1A : Falling in love with travel again

How I would love to be in my early twenties again,
having the lighter weight of responsibility on my
naive shoulders. Despite spending the last fifteen
years enjoying the pleasures of wanderlust, I often
ask myself if I would have done anything different
with my travel experiences. My honest answer is
yes. I would have been more selfish. I would have
been greedier in searching for memories. I would
have satisfied my desire to meet new people and
hoard stories to tell in my later years. I’m certainly
not short of stories now, but imagine having the
opportunity to go back a decade, taking the
chance to embrace every opportunity to explore
that comes your way. I would have scaled Mount
Kinabalu, maybe swam with a Whale Shark or
spent a week discovering Maori culture. My
restriction was the routine of life; the pressure of
having to etch out a career. And rightly so;
planning is a responsibility almost every 22 year old
has at the back of their mind. At that age however,
I had aspirations and a passion for discovering
something new. Those years are the product of
childhood dreams, wondering whether the Taj
Mahal really reflected in the ponds like in the
Polaroids my father showed me, or whether
Michael Palin’s journey across the Sahara could be
repeated by a complete novice.

Today, the future generation of Muslim travellers are
growing up in a world of visual media that is more
colourful than ever and, will so they have the
opportunity to dream big and create even bigger. They
will be the storytellers of the future, and whilst you
may now be expecting a ream of forecasted market
statistics or the billions of dollars the halal market is
worth, I only have this to say; the future of the halal
travel industry relies in instilling the love for travel in
our youth, providing them with the opportunity to
learn through immersion, to speak to others of
differing religions, races, cultures and languages. The
rest will fall into place through the market growth
happening right now, with the commercial travel
supply chain across the world embracing the halal
currency. We can spend the next twenty years
convincing hotels, food suppliers and national tourist
organisations that the halal travel industry is the way
forward, however let’s not forget to inspire the
travellers that will inevitably fuel the future of the
market. We believe in accessibility for all, and with
travel readily available, travel experiences can be
anything from a short rail journey to Brussels to a longhaul
flight to Sumatra. Investing in our future
generations through travel experiences is the ultimate
key to securing a strong halal travel industry in the
future.

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