HCMC – Although it still has a long way to go, Vietnam’s tourism industry has set a target to welcome some 65 million local and foreign visitors this year, with domestic tourism accounting for 90%.
Speaking at the year-end meeting on January 6, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism said Covid-19 left severe impact on the local tourism sector in 2021.
Vietnam received a mere 3,500 international visitors, besides 40 million local ones in 2021. The total turnover stood at VND180,000 billion, decreasing 42% compared with 2020.
After a year of coming to a standstill, the local tourism sector is now seeing positive signs from the local market and is hoping to respond to the call.
This year, the local tourism sector is set to receive 65 million visitors, of whom five million are international travelers and 60 million are local ones, earning some VND400,000 billion.
Phan Huy Binh, chairman of the management board of Saigontourist Group, said it is a must to promote Vietnam as a safe destination to draw the attention of international tourists and stimulate the travel demand in the home market.
Binh said safety is the leading factor in helping the tourism sector stand firm in the face of unpredictable pandemics worldwide.
Local tourism needs to select products that meet the safety criteria, create more green destinations, and join hands to develop green tourism zones, Binh said.
“Safety measures will determine the tourism operations in the context of living with Covid-19,” Binh was quoted as saying to Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper.
Pham Ha, chairman of Lux Group, said the local tourism sector would play a key role in revamping the whole tourism industry, helping travel companies ride on difficulties caused by Covid-19.
Ha said his three boats operating in Halong, Haiphong and Nha Trang are full of travelers on weekends and are even fully booked for the coming Tet holidays.
Ha said the trend and tourism demand has changed, and thus travelers’ needs should be of the utmost importance.
According to Ha, Vietnam’s tourism needs to develop sustainably, leverage its heritage, consolidate its brand, and refresh its promotional campaigns.
Dang Manh Phuoc, director of Outbox Consulting Company, said the tourism market has changed in its behavior and demand and the readiness to decide to travel after the pandemic.
The problem for the tourism industry is balancing the supply and demand while restoring its operations. Besides offering new products, travel companies and management agencies have to find ways to approach potential guests and satisfy the market demand.