Foreign tourists visit the Independence Palace in HCM City. (Source:baotintuc.vn)

HCM City (VNA) - Tourism inspectors in Ho Chi Minh City have fined more than 130 travel and hospitality firms a total of 2 billion VND (89,300 USD) for various violations, according to the city Department of Tourism. 

Thirty three travel agents, including four offering outbound tours, were hauled up for unlicensed operations and lack of qualified guides, chief inspector Nguyen Van Kham said. 

More than 100 hotels were fined for failing to reassess their star ratings and make an announcement about their operations. 

Ten tour guides were fined for failure to produce lists of tourists, tour schedules and labour contracts. 

The city has nearly 1,100 travel agents, including 578 that offer outbound tours. 

Last year 40 travel agents, 89 hotels and 19 tour guides were fined a total of more than 2.5 billion VND (111,600 USD). 

The department will continue to inspect travel agencies and tour guides to ensure safe and healthy trips for tourists. 

It will cooperate with the city Tourism Association and travel companies, airlines and the Sai Gon Railway Company to ramp up domestic tourism promotion. 

The city received more than 2.4 million international visitors in the first half of this year, a 12.2 percent increase year-on-year, according to the department.-VNA