The Prohibition to Travel without Mahram for Women
Sheikh Amr Ibn Abdul Mun’im Salim:
From Ibn ‘Umar –may Allah be pleased with him-, the Messenger of Allah –peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- said, which can be translated as, “It is not allowed for women to travel for three days except there is a mahram with him.” (Muttafaqun ‘alaih).
And from Abu Sa’id Al Khudriy, -may Allah be pleased with him-, the Messenger of Allah –peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- said, “It is not allowed for a woman to travel for two days without any mahram or her husband with her.” ( Muttafaqun ‘alaih).
From Abu Huraira –may Allah be pleased with him-, from the Prophet –peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- said, “it is not allowed for a woman who believes in Allah and the Last Day to travel for one day except there is a mahram with her.” (Muttafaqun ‘alaih).
From Ibn Abbas –may Allah be pleased with him- from the Prophet –peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- he said, “It is not allowed for a woman to travel except there is a woman with her.” Then a person said, “O Messenger of Allah, my wife goes out to pilgrimage and I’m set to join such-and-such war.”
Then he said, “Go and perform the pilgrimage with your wife.” ( Muttafaqun ‘alaih).
In another narration it is said,
“A woman shouldn’t travel for three days except with her mahram.”
In every condition, a muslim woman should always follow the teaching of Allah’s messenger – peace and prayer of Allah be upon him- and try her best to carry out his orders and abandon his prohibition.
His word, “La yakhilu”, means “La yajuzu”, or prohibited. His saying, “it is not allowed for a woman who believes in Allah and in the Last Day”, according to some scholars means that the prohibition is specifically directed to muslim women, and not the infidel women. However, this opinion is refuted, by the reason that it is the faith that continuously becomes the object of enjoin of the maker of shari’a for those who have it, thus he could draw benefit from it and be saved.
O muslim sister!
Islam wishes to protect woman and take care of her with any ways and means which in turn will benefit the women herself. There are some points that we could infer from this explanation, namely:
– It is prohibited for woman to travel, except for major and minor pilgrimage, without escorted by her mahram or her husband. According to the expert in jurisprudence, as long as there is a security assurance if she is accompanied by another trusted woman. This opinion is different with people who require woman to be accompanied by mahram or husband.
– The concern of Islam over woman in protecting her, and far from provoking any worries about any harm that may afflict her.
Imam Nawawi –may Allah have mercy on him- said, “The obvious thing is that any kind of traveling (long journey) is prohibited for a woman without the company of her husband or her mahram, be it for one, two, or three days, or short traveling, and so on. It is based on a hadith from Ibn Abbas –may Allah be pleased with him- above.” [See: Syarhu Shahihi Muslim, III/484]
(Taken from the book “30 Larangan Bagi Wanita” by Amr Bin Abdul Mun’im Salim).