HCMC – The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has kicked off a program to stimulate domestic travel and help the tourism industry overcome difficulties caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Many travel firms, hotels and air carriers have resumed regular activity and are offering a wide range of discounts for domestic tourists.
Domestic market to be prioritized
According to the ministry, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism will coordinate with localities and the relevant agencies to run the program from June 1 to December 31 in major tourism areas. Attractive stimulus packages will be introduced to attract domestic tourists.
To offer stimulus packages at affordable prices, the ministry has requested localities to work out policies to waive or reduce entrance fees at tourist sites. Meanwhile, airlines and transport firms have been asked to consider discounts for travel firms, enabling them to build package tours at reasonable prices.
Vietnamese consumers are being encouraged to use local products before Vietnam’s market is opened to guests from other countries after the pandemic ends, regarded by the Tourism Advisory Board as an essential move and one of the solutions necessary to restore the economy and help the tourism industry recover.
Once there are practical policies in place to promote production and generate jobs, domestic tourism will bounce back. The domestic market will be prioritized after the pandemic ends as well.
According to firms in the field, the stimulus program needs to be carried out consistently on a large scale. The prices of products and services should be appealing enough to make Vietnam’s tourism industry competitive versus other destinations.
Solutions should be drastic to woo tourists and widespread to draw attention, stated Le Van Son, vice chairman of the Nha Trang-Khanh Hoa Tourism Association. He added that many hotels in Nha Trang that have joined the program will offer 50% discounts.
Travel firms and hotels have recently reopened after a long period of lockdown. The very first products on offer appear to target small groups of tourists and families.
Saigontourist Travel Service Company is offering reasonably priced services to customers across the country.
In HCMC, besides package tours to nearby destinations, the prices of Free & Easy tours to Vung Tau, Ho Tram, Phan Thiet, Dalat and Nha Trang start at VND1.439 million per guest.
In Hanoi, hotel bookings will see discounts of 30%-50%. Tours offered in coordination with Bamboo Airways are also being discounted.
Meanwhile, the charges of packages for three- to four-day stays at five-star hotels and resorts will be reduced by 20%-50%. For instance, the starting price of the package for FLC Quy Nhon or Muong Thanh Holiday Dalat is VND2.75 million per guest.
The prices of packages at Vinpearl Riverfront Danang, Vinpearl Beach Front Nha Trang and Vinoasis Phú Quoc start at VND3.39 million, VND3.399 million and VND3.499 million, respectively, and include airfare.
According to Saigontourist, interest from individual tourists and groups is picking up. Many companies have reached out and signed contracts for tours departing in June and July.
Vingroup confirmed that the Vinpearl hotel chain has started to reopen after being shut down for over a month.
Vinpearl hotels and VinWonders theme parks ran an online promotional program on April 26 to May 2, offering discounts of up to 50% for domestic tourists, applicable until November 30. More than three million potential visitors sought more information on the program.
At Vietnam Airlines Group, the three airlines of Vietnam Airlines, Jetstar Pacific and VASCO have reopened domestic services and are increasing flight frequencies.
Vietnam Airlines plans to fully resume domestic flights next month. The airline has been selling promotional tickets since May 7, with airfares starting at VND199,000.
The Vietnam Tourism Association and local tourism associations are also working with partner airlines and businesses to roll out the domestic travel stimulus program.
Many package tours may see deep discounts, and the program will be officially launched in the middle of this month.
By Dao Loan