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Business trends

Halal tourism boom draws Muslim holidaymakers to Asia

The world's fastest-growing travel niche is forecast to be worth $300bn globally by 2026

Muslim tourists pose for a selfie at Tokyo's Sensoji Temple on Aug. 23. Halal tourism is the fastest-growing travel niche in the world. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi) 

JAKARTA -- In 2015, Serene Loo, a business director and blogger from Jakarta, went to Japan for her honeymoon. Loo and her husband fell in love with Japan, but as observant Muslims who adhere to halal dietary laws, their dining options were limited.

Last year, when the couple returned to Japan, they were delighted to discover that some restaurants had begun to see potential in “halal tourism” -- a niche market that encompasses Muslim-friendly food and drinks, tours with breaks for the five daily prayer calls, visits to mosques and prayer rooms, and halal hotels such as the Syariah Hotel Fujisan.

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