South Korea has remained the largest international tourist market for Vietnam since the beginning of this year, while China has risen to second position after more than two months of reopening to international travel.
In the first five months of the year, Vietnam welcomed nearly 4.6 million international visitors, 13 times the amount on-year and equal to 63 per cent compared to 2019.
The ten largest markets were South Korea, Mainland China, the US, Taiwan, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Australia, and Singapore, providing a combined total of 3.3 million arrivals, accounting for 71 per cent of the total number of visitors.
Before 2019, China was Vietnam's largest international tourist market, accounting for about 30 per cent of the total number of visitors. That year, Vietnam welcomed 18 million international visitors, of which China contributed 5.8 million, followed by visitors from Russia, the UK, and France.
After the Covid-19 pandemic, South Korea has since risen to be the largest tourist market with 1.3 million arrivals, followed by China in second. Several European markets have also dropped out of the top ten, replaced by the likes of Cambodia and Singapore.
According to the Hanoi Department of Tourism, Hanoi is estimated to have welcomed 10 million visitors in the first five months of the year, an increase of 53.9 per cent on-year. This was made up of 1.71 million international visitors and 8.4 million domestic visitors. Hanoi's tourism sector earned more than VND 37,000 billion ($1.6 million), up 92 per cent over the same period last year.
Hanoi welcomed more than two million visitors in May alone, with approximately 316,000 international visitors.
Phung Quang Thang, Chairman of the Hanoi Travel Association, said that to continue to draw tourists, Vietnam's tourism industry needs to clearly define its goals and customer segments to study the habits and preferences of each potential client market band come up with the most suitable strategies.
"It is possible to focus on a certain visitor market, launch media campaigns to attract more attention of visitors from other markets," said Thang.
In addition, Vietnam needs to study the strengths and weaknesses of competitive destinations such as Thailand, Singapore, and Malaysia carefully to learn about the best ways to entice tourists.