Blogged by @Joehairie
Published for Hong Kong Tourism Board
Featured image: Mufti Muhammad Arshad, Chief Imam of Hong Kong, The Incorporated Trustees of The Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong
From left: Raymond Chan, Regional Director, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong Tourism Board; Fazal Bahardeen, Founder & CEO, Crescentrating; Mufti Muhammad Arshad, Chief Imam of Hong Kong, The Incorporated Trustees of The Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong
HKTB looks to educate Hong Kong’s tourism and hospitality industry on halal travel
Throughout 2018, Hong Kong Tourism Board has been actively marketing to Muslim travellers and introducing new offerings that would appeal to the halal travel market. To break in the new year, they are taking it up a notch, not only practicing targeted marketing to the Muslim community but also taking steps to educate their stakeholders of the characteristics of a Muslim traveller thus aligning all parties’ understanding of how to better cater to Muslims.
To kickstart this initiative, HKTB recently conducted a Muslim Travel Seminar for Hong Kong businesses and travel partners to understand the needs of a typical Muslim traveller. An estimated 120 participants consisting of Hong Kong stakeholders from various industries and associations such as retail, F&B, shopping malls and attractions gathered to find out more about the Muslim industry with plans to tap into this market.
With spokespersons including Raymond Chan, Regional Director, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong Tourism Board, Fazal Bahardeen, Founder and CEO of CrescentRating and Halal Trip, and Mufti Muhammad Arshad, Chief Imam of Hong Kong, the seminar delved into the themes of halal certification, characteristics of a Muslim traveller and the market potential of halal travel in Hong Kong.
Raymond Chan, Regional Director, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong Tourism Board
“We are excited to be able to share the information we have learned about the Muslim community with our trade partners and stakeholders. Having a better understanding towards a Muslim’s needs would allow us to better prepare for and cater to them. Hong Kong hopes to create further awareness about the availability of Halal cuisine, prayer facilities and other Muslim-friendly amenities,” said Raymond Chan, Regional Director, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong Tourism Board.
Fazal Bahardeen, Founder and CEO of CrescentRating said, “It is really encouraging to see Hong Kong Tourism Board taking the initiative to educate all stakeholders on the opportunities that the Muslim travel market offers. It is taking the right actions to become a more Muslim friendly destination”.
As part of Hong Kong Tourism Board’s initiatives to engage with the Muslim community, HKTB has been partnering with online Muslim travel platforms to produce content that highlights Hong Kong as a preferred destination for Muslim travel.
HKTB has also just launched a Muslim friendly bucket list which features must-visit attractions, Halal eateries and Muslim-friendly facilities in Hong Kong, so that Muslims can make Hong Kong their preferred holiday destination this year.
Halal food options in Hong Kong
Visitors can enjoy Hong Kong’s unique culinary culture at any of the halal options which serve halal local delicacies such as pastries at the Chirsly Cafe which is famous for the pineapple bun (bo lo bao) and egg tarts.
If you are looking to get your halal dim sum fix, look no further than the Islamic Centre Canteen who have a wide range of dim sum dishes such as Siu Mai, Har Gow, Xiao Long Pao, steamed glutinous rice with chicken in lotus leaf and many more.
Major attractions have improved their Muslim offerings
Hong Kong’s main attractions have already stepped up some of their Muslim offerings. Ocean Park, Hong Kong has recently obtained halal certification for one of its restaurants, Café Ocean which offers a variety of Southeast Asian dishes.
Besides that, Hong Kong Disneyland already offers various halal food options such as the Main Street Market, Mystic Point’s Explorer’s Club Restaurant, and Tahitian Terrace where you can find a range of cuisines from Korean, Japanese and even Indonesian.
Even some of the hotels at Hong Kong Disneyland provide halal food upon request. Once you have had your fill of halal food, Muslims are able to carry out their prayers at a designated prayer room right next to the Explorer’s Club.
Another local attraction worth taking note of is Ngong Ping, which is famous for their Crystal Cabin Cable Cars as well as the iconic Big Buddha which is a favourite spot for your Instagram photo backgrounds.
On top of these, Ngong Ping also boasts its own halal certified restaurant at Ebeneezer’s Kebab and Pizzeria which offers a range of Indian and Middle-Eastern dishes. On top of these, Hong Kong are continuing to further improve Muslim offerings to ensure visitors have more options.
For more information on halal and Muslim-friendly offerings, click HERE