A new trend is the rage right now in Muslim majority areas of Malaysia which is halal dating better known as speed dating.
Halal Speed Dating is a new matchmaking event in Kuala Lumpur that is helping Malaysian Muslims find partners in a largely conservative society where courtship is frowned upon and marriages are often arranged.
The service is halal dating, meaning permissible under Islamic law, as it is practiced with an Islamic twist: women speed daters must be chaperoned by a wali, or guardian until she gets married and who grants her the permission to do so.
Malaysia is a largely moderate Muslim country, where Islam is the official religion and ethnic Malay Muslims make up two thirds of the 30 million people.
Many young Malaysians meet as young people do in many places, including through the dating app Tinder and on Facebook, but dating is complicated for young Muslims in Malaysia, where public displays of affection and intimacy before marriage is strictly disapproved of.
Halal Speed Dating’s founders say most of their clients hope to find a spouse. A client can shortlist up to three possible partners but can only negotiate marriage with one at a time, in accordance with Islamic rules. They say their system can prevent what they see as the social ills of premarital sex and adultery, which they believe are fostered by apps like Tinder.
The founders have organised the event twice in Kuala Lumpur. The first time in May when about 80 people joined, and the second time last week with 60 hopefuls.
About 2,300 people have signed up to attend a session, most of them urban professionals between the ages of 25 to 35. Although many of the Muslims still find halal dating a bit difficult to digest.