Hong Leong Islamic Bank and Andalusia Travel & Tours Partner to Enhance the Umrah Experience for Muslims

In an attempt to provide convenient, digital, and Sharia-compliant financing for Muslims embarking on their Umrah pilgrimage, Hong Leong Islamic Bank (“HLISB” or the “Bank”) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Andalusia Travel & Tours (“Andalusia”) to establish a breakthrough cooperation. This relationship will allow the Bank to supplement its trusted Andalusian Umrah package with a broad variety of personal Islamic banking solutions, aligning with the Bank’s commitment to upholding Islamic financial standards and meeting the different lifestyle demands of its Muslim clients.

This collaboration means that Muslims planning their Umrah pilgrimage can finance their travels following Shariah principles by utilizing HLISB’s Islamic finance offerings, specifically the Personal Financing-i and Pay & Save Account-i. HLISB’s holistic Shariah-compliant products and services cater to various lifestyle needs, equipping Muslims with specific, digital, and personalized financial solutions.

Dafinah Ahmed Hilmi, CEO of HLISB, emphasized the Bank’s commitment to designing financial solutions that cater to the specific lifestyle needs of its Muslim customers.

“As a financial intermediary, we are committed to designing financial solutions that cater to our customers’ specific lifestyle needs, following our promise to be “Built Around You”. In growing our Shariah capabilities, we want to provide a wide range of innovative products and services that ensure our Muslim customers have peace of mind in fulfilling their religious obligations.”

“This commitment extends to providing comprehensive digital accessibility through our mobile banking platforms, facilitating online Zakat payments, and presenting wealth management opportunities through our Term Investment Accounts-i and ASNB Unit Trust funds. Driven by a resolute customer-centric philosophy, our collaboration with Andalusia marks a significant stride toward delivering enhanced value to our customers. This strategic alliance actively addresses their diverse needs, empowering Muslims to fulfill their religious obligations with ease.”

As part of HLISB’s collaboration with Andalusia, which has been operating in the Islamic tourism sector for over 20 years, the Bank will offer its innovative HLISB Pay & Save Account-i and HLISB Personal Financing-i to Andalusia’s customers and members of the public who are looking to perform Umrah.

The Personal Financing-i solution offers Shariah-compliant financing to customers to fulfill their religious obligations, which comes with up to 60% pay-on-time rebates on profit and a RM50 Touch n Go e-wallet reload pin with every successful application*Meanwhile, the Bank’s Pay & Save Account-i provides up to 4.15% profit per annum on the account balance*. It also has a Multi-Currency feature, allowing for foreign currency spending with the HLB Debit Card, withdrawing foreign currencies from overseas ATMs, and direct conversion of MYR to foreign currencies at a competitive rate via HLB Connect.

Over the past 25 years, the number of Umrah pilgrims from Malaysia has increased by an estimated 900%1, indicating a substantial growth in Umrah travel since the country recorded a total of 30,000 pilgrims in 1998.  The Saudi government’s special privileges for Malaysian tourists, such as replacing the Umrah visa with a tourist visa, have made Umrah package prices significantly cheaper, and Umrah travel bookings have become easier and more flexible.

Hajah Ida Riswana binti Idris, Director of Andalusia Travel & Tours, shared how this partnership presents a win-win situation for all parties, leveraging on a larger customer base who will reap the benefits.

“Our mission at Andalusia is to provide affordable and quality Umrah services to the Muslim community, in hopes that every Muslim gets to perform their religious duties without hassle and worry. This collaboration with HLISB ensures that our customers have access to Shariah-compliant, affordable, and digital ways to finance their Umrah pilgrimages with a holistic suite of financial tools and services. We believe that this will open more doors for the Muslim community to manage their finances effectively in today’s digital age while fulfilling their religious obligations with a Shariah-compliant financial foundation.”

Apart from the Pay & Save Accounts-i and Personal Financing-i, HLISB offers competitive wealth management opportunities through its Term Investment Account-i and in ASNB Unit Trust funds, both of which can be accessed fully on the HLB Connect mobile banking platform. Besides that, the Bank provides an online payment gateway for Muslim customers to fulfill their Zakat payments. Customers can also complete their Wasiat fully online through the HLB Connect mobile banking platform, benefitting from the Bank’s one-stop legacy planning and competitive e-Wasiat services.

For more information on HLISB’s Pay & Save Account-i, please visit http://www.hlisb.com.my/pay&save-i

1https://www.malaysianow.com/news/2023/01/26/malaysias-rm3-billion-pilgrimage-business-set-for-further-growth-despite-spiralling-costs

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