Turkey’s halal tourism industry has grown beyond expectations amid the pandemic, a top business representative has said.

Emrullah Ahmet Turhan, secretary-general of the Halal International Tourism Organization, said: “As we predicted at the beginning of the pandemic, there was a great interest especially in boutique hotels and villas.

“We have reached 100% of occupancy rate in villas, which generally reach 90-95% occupancy rate. Likewise, businesses serving camps and caravans reached their full capacity,” Turhan said.

“We can say that private boats are also in great demand. In a volatile season for many sectors, the halal tourism sector did not cause loss for its investors,” he added.

He noted that the efforts of Turkey’s Culture and Tourism Ministry had borne fruit in this area.

Turhan said with the right promotions, top-notch measures at airports and the safe tourism certificate awarded to hotels that complied with health standards, the visitors were instilled with confidence.

Halal tourism targets Muslim families who follow the Islamic rules. Facilities complying with this sub-category of tourism do not serve alcohol and have separate spa and pool facilities for men and women.

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