More work to do to boost tourist number performance

January 02, 2024 | 07:00
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Tourism is still suffering, particularly in the normal tourism hotspots such as Nha Trang, Danang, Phu Quoc, Halong, and Dalat, where tourism numbers are well down from 2022 figures and many hotels have still not reopened.
More work to do to boost tourist number performance
John Gardner, ceo, Archipelago Indochina

There are many reasons for this such as the war in Ukraine, the Chinese economy performing badly, the restrictive visitor visa process in Vietnam, expensive domestic airfares, unattractive tourist destinations for repeat visitors, and the Vietnam domestic economy suffering.

Regarding visitor visas into Vietnam, recently the authorities have slightly relaxed the process and length of stay plus enabled more countries to be Visa free. However, the other countries in Southeast Asia competing for the same tourist dollars have opened their doors to far more countries for visa-free entry, plus they are placing far more investment dollars into marketing globally.

I don’t see any real improvement in tourism numbers until towards the end of 2024 at the earliest, even 2025, simply because the domestic economy is still hurting, as is much of the global economy. In addition, people are still careful on how and where they spend their discretionary dollar.

A couple of things would help boost inbound tourism into Vietnam. The country should open up visa-free travel to many more countries such as China, just as other Southeast Asian countries have done. It should then put serious money into various forms of professional marketing, both online through social media and offline through advertising on local media in the key countries.

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By John Gardner

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