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The halal tourism – alternative or mass tourism? Indications of traditional mass tourism on crescent rating guidelines on halal tourism

Bhayu Rhama (Department of Public Administration, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, University of Palangka Raya, Palangka Raya, Indonesia)

Journal of Islamic Marketing

ISSN: 1759-0833

Article publication date: 25 March 2021

Issue publication date: 23 May 2022




This study aims to identify whether halal tourism, as advocated by Mastercard-Crescent Rating guidelines on halal tourism can be considered as supporting sustainable tourism.


Three Mastercard-CrescentRating 2019 Reports which are Global Muslim Travel Index, Indonesia Muslim Travel Index and Halal Travel Frontier were evaluated using a qualitative method supports by NVivo software to analyze text and images. Eight indicators (number of tourists, main motivations, main values, interaction with the community, interaction with the environment, most possible destinations, infrastructure and visitor monitorings) are used to classify halal tourism items into mass tourism (traditional, experiential and sensational) and non-mass (alternative) tourism. The qualitative analysis is supported by correlation analysis of GMTI scores with environmental performance index and the global sustainable competitiveness index scores.


The results showed that halal tourism has unique characters compared with mass and non-mass tourism types. However, halal tourism advocated by CrescentRating unlikely shows similarity with non-mass tourism. It tends to be traditional mass tourism, especially on the perspective of the type of activity, interactions with the environment and local communities, as well as the main values.


Previous research suggested the needs of halal tourism and its relations to sustainability. This research fills the gap by showing the halal tourism, in the perspective of Mastercard-CrescentRating is not prioritized toward sustainable tourism by qualitative and quantitative evidences. This study contributes to the knowledge of sustainability from Islamic perspectives and practices and provides a way to the theory of Islamic sustainable tourism. It also suggests improvements to halal tourism guidelines such as the transparency and guarantees that the profit will be used for social welfare, promotion of sustainability using Qur’anic verses and promotion on environmental and social empowerment activities.



Rhama, B. (2022), "The halal tourism – alternative or mass tourism? Indications of traditional mass tourism on crescent rating guidelines on halal tourism", Journal of Islamic Marketing, Vol. 13 No. 7, pp. 1492-1514.



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