What is it about?

Halal tourism is a dynamic emerging market segment that is growing at a notable pace. Understanding the Muslim travelers' needs, interests and behaviors is a key priority for professionals. Therefore, the goals of this study are twofold: first, to examine the linear and nonlinear effects of Islamic physical and nonphysical hotel attributes on Muslim guests' visit intention and willingness to pay extra, and second, to employ an advanced segmentation method for revealing different types of Muslim travelers. Data were randomly collected from 559 Muslim in the United Arab Emirates.

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Why is it important?

The study adopted the finite mixtures partial least squares technique to investigate the question of unobserved heterogeneity among Muslim travelers. The study results reveal important linear and nonlinear relationships and three new Muslim segments. The segment-specific findings offer distinctive insights for managers, policymakers and decision-makers in developing long-term strategies for tapping into the Muslim travel market.


This study makes five significant contributions to the literature and hospitality industry: 1. The linear effects of hotel services on Muslims’ behavioral intentions were examined 2. The nonlinear effects of hotel services on Muslims’ behavioral intentions were examined 3. The unobserved heterogeneity revealed three new Muslim tourist groups 4. The results revealed relationships among the three newly developed Muslim groups 5. The importance-performance analysis was used for more rigorous managerial implications

Dr. Avraam Papastathopoulos
University of Dubai

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This page is a summary of: What services do Muslim tourists want? Uncovering nonlinear relationships and unobserved heterogeneity, Tourism Management Perspectives, July 2020, Elsevier, DOI: 10.1016/j.tmp.2020.100720.
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