In a quest to become the foreign tourists’ preferred airport, Narita International Airport near Tokyo, is fast becoming Muslim-friendly. The authorities at the largest airport of Japan near Tokyo have already started upgrading important facilities to attract more and more Muslim visitors from Malaysia, Indonesia and other Muslim countries.
The operator of the airport has already setup two worship places in its premises and plans to add two more in the coming summer. As mentioned earlier in an earlier blog post, three of these four prayer rooms will have ‘Wudu facilities’ to do ablution before offering prayers. Both men and women could use these facilities as the authorities have already partitioned the prayer spaces for the purpose.
The airport authorities are also making preparations to set up a ‘halal certified restaurant’ inside the airport building in the rental lounges area. Even a private company called TFK Co. Ltd,. also plans to open a fully halal restaurant compliant with the Shariah rules about the permissibility of eating a food, inside the airport Terminal 2 rental lunges area some time during this year. However, we are not clear yet when they are going to do so. Muslim visitors are advised to make reservations for halal food at least five days in advance.
Halal certified restaurants offering meals prepared in dedicated Halal kitchens will soon be available in the airport passenger terminals. It may be noted that a Halal kitchen is a kitchen in which only Halal ingredients are used in compliance with Halal or Shariah rules. The kitchen is kept free of alcohol, pork and other food items derived from these products, and food is prepared using dedicated cooking utensils and Halal ingredients and seasonings only.
The airport authorities are also providing training to their airport staff to familiarize them with Islamic rules and customs to deepen their knowledge and understanding of Muslim customer needs so that they may offer services and hospitality tailored to the customers’ requirements. Our frequent interaction with the airport staff is a testament to the great training they have received to welcome and assist Muslim guests form all over the world.