Uncharted territories: Gen Z British Muslim travels

What British Muslims want from brands to elevate holiday experiences

Arif Miah

Creative Strategy Director mud orange


When the term "British Muslim travels" is brought up, what comes to mind for many are images rooted in immigration or people visiting “back home” whilst living, studying or working abroad. This perception is fuelled by stereotypical portrayals in mainstream media and outdated brand communications, but it’s far from the dynamic travelling trends of the 3.9 million Muslims who call the UK their home. They expect so much more to enrich their travelling and holiday experiences as they take a break from the regular to explore and be inspired - especially British Muslim Gen Zs. 

Gen Zs overlooked 

When it comes to travel and tourism, there’s a group that’s over a million strong that's often forgotten in brand communications. I’m talking about Gen Z British Muslims. A vibrant, adventurous, and dynamic group with a passion for exploring the world. They’re probably the most overlooked population that’s on our doorstep making up 1 in 10 of all British Gen Zs. So there's a huge commercial opportunity, for airlines, travel companies, to booking platforms, yet we rarely see targeted efforts to engage this underserved audience. 

Exploration, beyond borders 

The overwhelming majority of Muslim Gen Zs are born and raised in the UK, but what sets them apart is that a substantial proportion are active thrill seekers. Their idea of holiday-making is not limited to visiting ancestral lands but extends to exploring the far reaches of the world, seeking adrenaline-packed adventures, and immersive cultural experiences. 

Our latest ‘m. economy’ study found that 1 in 3 call themselves adrenaline seekers, hungry for the thrill of diving from the sky, the rush of ziplining through exotic landscapes, and the awe of exploring the underwater world through scuba diving. The term “Halal highs” has been used to signpost unforgettable activities that meet their religious and cultural needs. And Halal highs isn’t just a catchphrase; it's a lifestyle - adventurous experiences that align with their faith and values.

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Opportunity for brands in the business of tourism 

The narrative surrounding Muslim travellers is often restricted, outdated, and doesn’t echo the lives of these young, dynamic individuals. We found that 65% of British Muslims aged between 19-26 embark on at least one holiday a year – with their top destinations including Turkey, Morocco and Dubai for their Muslim friendly environments and wide range of activities. But where are the brands that engage this active, vibrant audience, ready for adventure? They’re currently left to freestyle their holiday plans by flicking through TikTok and researching online. So they call for brands to fill this gap, streamlining, supporting and inspiring British Muslim travelling.

A staggering 81% of Gen Z British Muslims express a desire for more representation in travel advertising that speaks to their unique blend of British and Muslim identity. They crave inclusivity, not just in imagery, but in the core messaging and offerings tailored to their distinct lifestyle. Yet, the industry seems to lag, catering to stereotypes rather than the dynamic realities. While the world of travel and tourism has made strides in diversity, it often misses the mark in authentically capturing the British Muslim experience, particularly of the younger generation.

So, to the travel and tourism industry - this is an invitation not just to observe but to act, and work with partners to transform these insights into actionable strategies. Whilst it may be uncharted territory for your brand, British Muslims have their bags packed to discover and explore the new.

There’s no shortcut to this. It requires an immersion, an authentic effort to understand, engage and cater to this demographic. It’s about recognising that ‘halal holidays’ aren’t just about halal food and prayer spaces but encompass a broader narrative of adventure, thrill, and unforgettable experiences that align with their values.

As Strategy Director at a specialist agency leading the intricate interplay of cultural nuances of Muslim life and market dynamics, we’ve uncovered and engaged with this demographic. The insights are clear, the potential is enormous, and the opportunity is ripe for the taking.

Guest Author

Arif Miah

Creative Strategy Director mud orange


Arif Miah is Co-Founder and Strategy Director at mud orange. mud orange is an independent multi award-winning creative agency that specialises in Muslim and niche audiences. Based in London, they’ve built a global name for producing some of the most disruptive brand work and advertising campaigns that connect with new audiences, diverse communities, and emerging spaces.