New Delhi, Aug 3 : Indian travel industry is smiling all over again. Thanks to huge discount offered by prominent airlines, better economic conditions and long weekend, travel and hospitality sector is moving upwards.
Apart from business travel, leisure travel, adventure travel and others, religious travel is one of the sectors that is leaving its marks strongly.
According to tourism sector data, business in religious tourism sector has increased 25 to 30 percent during last two to three years.
A country which has people of many faiths, religious travel has always been a big business. Explaining the trend, CEO and Co-Founder ixigo, Aloke Bajpai said "Most individuals visiting religious destinations are typically influenced by spiritual inspirations.
Although this might not be the case for all travellers as not many plan a religious tour for only pilgrimage, but also to explore and know more about the place." "In recent times, however, there has been an increase in the number of travellers opting for religious tourism.
Most people mistake religious tourism for visitation to a specific religious place, but it may include travelling for friendship or a humanitarian cause as well," added Aloke Bajpai.
Unlike earlier when people tended to consider pilgrimage only after retirement, these days young generation also looks forward to visit the places of spiritual and religious importance.
With increasing facilities at pilgrimages and attractive tour packages, religious travel is attracting the people from all age group especially 18 to 30.
"Religious tours attract a lot of attention from all age groups for diverse reasons. There are, of course, many individuals travelling solely for spiritual purposes, wishing primarily to worship their choice of deity in person.
Most of our travelers are young adults above the age of twenty five. Youngsters today are intelligent and curious about the world," said Co-Founder and Director ReligiousTrip.com, Jatin Arora.
"We hear of people losing faith in divinity and the youth today being a group without a god, but we find them very dynamic and spiritually aware.
They have wisdom enough to ask questions about religion and belief. They love exploring new thoughts and ideas, and they are willing to travel to religious places to find out more about them.
Religious tours have something to offer for everyone, whether they are devout followers of a certain religion or not," added Jatin Arora.
Usually it depends on personal choice to visit a religious place but the trends shows that people are going to both non-traditional pilgrimage destinations and to the most famous ones.
"Vaishnodevi, the Golden Temple in Amritsar, Tirupati, Puri, Shirdi Haridwar, Rishikesh, Gangoti, Badrinath, Kedarnath, Ujjain, Rameshwarm Ajmer Sharief and Pushkar are preferred destinations along with many others," said AVP-Sales and Operations TravelTriangle.com, Rohit Garhwal.