Foreign tourist numbers start to recover

The number of foreign tourists to Vietnam has grown over the last three months, following a 13-month decline due to diseases, unstable economy and fierce regional competition.
Foreign tourist numbers start to recover ảnh 1Illustrative Image (Source: dulichvietnam)

The number of foreign tourists to Vietnam has grown over the last three months, following a 13-month decline due to diseases, unstable economy and fierce regional competition.

During a press conference held on October 9 to review the results of the past few months' tourism improvement strategies, Nguyen Van Tuan, Director General of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), said he is optimistic the country's tourism sector will recover.

From now until the end of this year, Vietnam will try its best to promote its tourism marketing campaign and hold tourism fairs abroad to welcome at least the same number of tourists as last year – 7.8 million.

In the first haft of the year, the number of foreign tourists to the country decreased 12 percent, compared to last year. But in July, August and September, the number of foreign arrivals increased.

In September, international visitors to the country reached 626,000, an 8.3 percent increase over last year.

About 5.7 million tourists came to Vietnam during the first nine months of the year, marking a decrease of 5.9 percent on the year.

"We hope that in the next three months, with this trend, tourism will continue to develop," Tuan said. "If we achieve this result, it is due to big efforts from the tourism sector."

Along with an increase in the number of domestic travellers, the country earned 270 trillion VND (12 billion USD) from tourism, an increase of 2.8 percent on the year.

Vietnam started scrapping visas for visitors from six more European countries – Germany, France, Italy, Spain, England and Belarus – in July, aiming to draw in more tourists.

To attract more Westerner tourists, Tuan said he will ask the Government to extend the amount of time the tourists with visa exemptions could stay. According to the current rules, the visa exemption granted to those countries allows visitors one 15-day stay per year.

Moreover, within the next three months, the country will promote its e-marketing and be more active in promoting its image abroad. It will organise road shows in China (is responsible for a fourth of the international tourists coming to Vietnam), Singapore, France, Germany and Spain.

From October 20 to December 20, a 30-second ad showcasing Vietnam’s rich culture and stunning landscapes will be shown on the UK's Travel Channel.

Tuan said he will welcome all foreign filmmakers to Vietnam to shoot scenes for their movies.

Beautiful images of Vietnamese landscapes from Ha Long Bay and Ninh Binh to En Cave appeared in Warner Bros' second film trailer for Peter Pan. Son Doong Cave in Quang Binh Province also appeared on the US show Good Morning America. 

To lure more tourists, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will organise the National Tourism Year 2016 – Phu Quoc – the Mekong Delta, which will begin in April.

Over the last nine months, Vietnam organised several programmes to promote tourism in Singapore, Indonesia, India, China, and Slovakia. It also invited international journalists to the country. 

In 2015, Vietnam made it in the list of Telegraph readers' top 20 favourite countries. 

Almost 90,000 travellers of the UK's famous newspaper, the Telegraph, have voted Vietnam among the top 20 most impressive and fascinating destinations throughout the world.-VNA


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