UAE halal tourism market set to grow with 4.4 per cent rise in spend
The UAE’s halal tourism market is poised to see tremendous growth, as the country is increasingly becoming a major attraction to Muslim travellers.
According to the findings in a Dubai Chamber of Commerce, total spending on family tourism – an umbrella term used to refer to the body of Shariah-compliant, halal travel offerings – in the country is projected to increase by 4.4 per cent this year.
The UAE is among the top destinations for GCC families who seek cultural experiences and Muslim-friendly facilities. Morocco and Asian destinations such as Malaysia, Indonesia, India and the Philippines are other attractions this year, while visits to Turkey are expected to drop, dragged down by the recent instability in the country.
Meanwhile, the outbound family travel expenditure of Emirati citizens is set to rise by 3.6 per cent this year, Dubai Chamber said.
Malaysia topped the Muslim travel-friendliness rankings on the Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI) for 2016 by Master Card and Singapore-based CrescentRating. The UAE moved up one spot to second place, replacing Turkey. Singapore scored the highest among the Non-OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) nations.
Globally, spending in the global Muslim travel segment is expected to hit $200 billion by 2020, driven by the growth in the number of Muslim travellers from the current 117 million (11 per cent of total global tourism) to an estimated 168m travellers worldwide over the next four years, according to the figures from CrescentRating.