Int’l flight resumption: Efficiency built on trust hinh anh 1Airlines are exerting efforts to resume international flights after a halt triggered by COVID-19 (Photo: VietnamPlus)


Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam is advised to promptly negotiate with countries that have efficiently curbed the spread of COVID-19 in a bid to create travel bubbles and gradually resume international tourism in a practical manner.

Relating to the re-opening of international air routes to Vietnam, Dr. Luong Hoai Nam, an aviation expert, voiced his concern about the collaboration in resumption of international flights with other countries, reception of air passengers, COVID-19 prevention, and effectiveness of the resumption in an interview granted to VietnamPlus.

Reporter: Vietnam is due to resume international flights, what is your opinion?

Luong Hoai Nam: Countries like Thailand and Singapore have built “travel bubbles”. They are bilateral or multilateral agreements stating regulations and tasks that countries of departure and arrival must follow on disease prevention and control.

Passengers’ trust can be obtained only when the resumption of international flights is based on such detailed agreements on safe travel. If not, Vietnam will fall into the category of countries without mandatory regulations on quarantine, which makes people feel unsafe and choose not to travel by air. In that case, airlines will not have many passengers and the seat occupancy rate may be less than 50 percent, resulting in further losses.

Reporter: Some people have expressed a concern that a COVID-19 outbreak will emerge following the re-opening of international air routes?

Luong Hoai Nam: In my opinion, Vietnam should negotiate with countries that have efficiently curbed the spread of COVID-19 in a bid to create travel bubbles and gradually resume international tourism in a practical manner, with high flight frequency and large number of passengers.

Whether a new outbreak emerges or not depends on how international routes will be resumed and with which countries. Vietnam has to discuss the procedures with those countries. Therefore, it could not said that the resumption will lead to the re-emergence of COVID-19 if the collaboration between nations is efficient.

Malaysia and Singapore still allow road transport with a large number of travellers as they have agreements stipulating rules which prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Those rules need to be detailed and meticulous, with the participation of centres on disease control and relevant agencies of Vietnam and other countries.

Reporter: To resume international air routes to Vietnam, passengers’ hesitation to air travel due to infection risks and quarantine upon arrival must be removed. What is your view on this matter?

Luong Hoai Nam: We should come to terms with countries and territories that have brought the pandemic under control to set up travel bubbles as soon as possible, based on thorough, clear, and transparent principles. It will build trust among passengers and help revitalise the market.

Being overcautious may lead to regrettable losses and opportunities being missed. It will also hamper creativity and an urge to create new chances in the current context.

Reporter: Thank you so much!/.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh last week ordered the Ministry of Health to devise a guideline on COVID-19 monitoring and testing for people entering Vietnam, along with scenarios on receiving, quarantine and testing at airports, and more.

The Ministry of Health is asked to work with the Ministry of Transport and authorities of the localities to discuss who will be allowed to enter the country and the requirements placed on them, along with entry procedures.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam is responsible for informing carriers and passengers of Vietnam’s requirements. Tickets to Vietnam can only be purchased by those with visas and accommodation.

Passenger lists need to be submitted to airport authorities at least 30 minutes prior to the flight. Before boarding flights to Vietnam, passengers must have their temperature checked, install the NCOVI health declaration app, and obtain a certificate issued by local authorities stating they have tested negative for SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.

A separate area in the aircraft will be zoned off for transfer passengers.