Halal tourism is one of the fastest growing travel industries in the world. In 2023 alone, the Global Islamic Economy predicted that it will reach $ 274 billion dollars in expenditures. This number makes the industry very appealing for countries who want to boost their tourism sector, many are galloping to accommodate and entice Muslim travellers to visit their countries and the Philippines is determined to be at the forefront of the race.
The Philippines makes the development of Halal Tourism a priority in their National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) 2023-2028, this initiative is kickstarted by the unveiling of numerous exciting travel ventures spread throughout the country, boasting its unique fusion of cultures, traditions and one-of-a-kind landscapes that answers well to the needs of Muslim travellers.
With a rich tapestry of history and a welcoming spirit, the Philippines promises a journey where halal-conscious travellers can explore a wealth of attractions and activities. From pristine white-sand beaches, lush mountains, from vibrant cityscapes to tranquil rural retreats, the country has curated a list of destinations and facilities that are in accord with halal requirements.
The Philippines has rolled out the new Guidelines governing the operations and recognition of Muslim friendly accommodation establishments. As of April 2023, the Department of Tourism (DOT) has recorded a nationwide total of 289 Halal Certified or Muslim Friendly Accommodation establishments spread through the City of Manilla, Palawan, Cebu, Bohol and Boracay.
On the same note, the DOT will be providing funds for the accreditation of no less than 50 halal restaurants to add to the already existing 65 halal certified and 172 Muslim Friendly certified restaurants. To make it easier for tourists to retrieve Muslim friendly information and services, DOT is currently developing a Muslim Travelogue, Halal Recipe Book for a Halal Culinary video series, Hijri Calendar, Mindanao Halal Culinary video series, BIMP EAGA Halal culinary series coffee table book and the Eid Al Fitr Halal Food Festival.
Specifically to cater to Indonesian Muslim travellers, the Philippines have connected direct flights routes from Indonesia (Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, Cengkareng/CGK) to the Philippines (Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Manila) via Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Cebu Pacific:
- PAL from CGK to Manila 10x /week, with detail on Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday 2x/day; Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Sunday 1x/day) and from Denpasar (DPS) to Manila 7x/week (daily),
- Cebu Pacific from CGK to Manila 7x/week and Denpasar (DPS) to Manila 10x/week, with detail on Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday 2x/day; Monday/Wednesday/Friday/Sunday 1x/day.
The Philippines is committed to become a new melting pot of tourism for Muslim travellers from all sides of the world, taking on plenty initiatives that will attract more tourists to come and discover the breathtaking sights of this archipelago country, embracing the warmth of Filipino hospitality and beauty.