Saturday,  Nov 17, 2018,19:37 (GMT+7) 0 0
Storm Son Tinh prevents cruise ships from visiting Vietnam
By Dao Loan
Monday,  Jul 30, 2018,12:53 (GMT+7)

Storm Son Tinh prevents cruise ships from visiting Vietnam

By Dao Loan

International tourists complete entry procedures at Ba Ria-Vung Tau port - PHOTO: DAO LOAN

HCMC – The number of tourists coming to Vietnam by sea in July has declined by an estimated 74.6% as Tropical Storm Son Tinh struck coastal provinces from Thai Binh to Ha Tinh some 10 days ago, according to the General Statistics Office.

Vietnam has welcomed over 1.18 million foreign visitors in July, up 5% against June. Of this figure, tourists to the country by air and road have increased by 2% and 8.6%, respectively, while cruise passenger arrivals have plunged by 74.6% as a result of Son Tinh, known in Vietnam as Storm No.3.

July has seen a mild 4,100 arrivals traveling to Vietnam by sea, much fewer than the 196,400 tourists who have visited the country by road and 988,300 others who have arrived by air.

Some travel enterprises told the Saigon Times that the sharp decline was partly due to the storm and partly because July is considered the off-season. Large firms such as Viet Excursions have received no international cruise ships in July.

Data from the General Statistics Office shows that waterway tours have slid by 43.8% in July year-on-year. The country has welcomed a mere 56,200 tourists over the first seven months of 2018, edging down by 2% year-on-year. However, the fall has failed to affect the country’s general growth due to the small number of passengers on international cruise ships.

In the past seven months, the country has seen international visits surging 25.4% against the same period last year to over nine million arrivals. Of the figure, 77% of travelers have come from the Asian market, which tops the list of Vietnam’s source markets, soaring by 30.4% year-on-year. The European market takes second place, with over 1.23 million arrivals, up 10.4%.

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) organized tourism marketing programs in Kaohsiung and Taipei, Taiwan, on July 24 and 26, with the aim of achieving a tourist exchange of 1.5 million visitors by 2020.

Data from VNAT indicates that the two sides’ tourist exchange doubled after five years and achieved some one million arrivals last year, with more than 616,000 Taiwanese travelers to Vietnam and over 380,000 Vietnamese arrivals in Taiwan.

Taiwan, one of the five largest source markets for Vietnam’s tourism industry, is holding tourism promotion programs, including cooperating with travel firms to reduce tour prices, simplifying visa procedures and allowing the use of e-visas.

Taiwan will organize a large-scale tourism marketing program in HCMC next week.

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