The Government has allowed employees of state organisations to have five straight days off on the Reunification Day (April 30) and International Labour Day (May 1) holidays, thus giving hopes that travel firms could do good business this time, the Saigon Times Daily has reported.

Tour operators are quick to roll out a variety of tours with attractive promotions for the long weekend holidays.

Saigontourist has predicted a pickup in long-haul tours from Ho Chi Minh City to the central region, especially those taking in Da Nang, Hoi An (Quang Nam province), Thien Duong Cave (Quang Binh province), Vung Chua (Quang Binh province) and Hue city for five days at 7.8 million VND (370 USD) per person.

Another special offer of Saigontourist for the forthcoming holidays is a six-day tour that takes in Hanoi, Yen Tu Mountain, Halong Bay, Ninh Binh and Sapa and combines with Ha Long Carnival in Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh province. The tour departs on April 30 and costs 9.595 million VND (370 USD). Meanwhile, the firm’s three-day tour of Hanoi and Ha Long costs 3.250 million VND (154.2 USD).

Early birds enjoy discounts of 2-3 million VND per person compared to prices on normal days.

For tours of Asian destinations, Saigontourist has a Thailand tour with prices ranging from 7.99 million VND to 10.5 million VND (379-498 USD) a client. Three million VND will be taken off for each early bird.

For Europe tours, Saigontourist charges 69.99 million VND (3,321 USD) on each guest based in HCM City wishing to travel to Turkey and Greek for eight days, with departure set for April 26. The price for travelers departing from Hanoi is lower, at 55.9 million VND (2,653 USD).

Saigontourist said 15,000 customers had booked tours during the upcoming holidays by late last week, an increase of 10-15% over last year.

Another travel firm in HCM City, Fiditour, is offering more than 300 short and long-haul tours. The two most favorite tours arranged by Fiditour are a three-day visit to Nha Trang priced at 5.995 million VND (284 USD) and a Hue-Thien Duong Cave-Trui Lake-Da Nang-Ba Na-Hoi An trip for five days at 8.450 million VND (401 USD).

Fiditour’s international tours that attract large numbers of bookings are a six-day tour of Singapore and Malaysia, which departs on April 27 in HCM City and costs 16.055 million VND (762 USD). The 11-day Denmark-Norway-Sweden-Finland-Poland tour costs around 99.9 million VND (4,741 USD).

Vietravel is launching a promotion with a discount of 3 million VND for a five-day Hanoi-Sapa-Yen Tu-Halong and a Ba Be-Bac Can-Cao Bang-Ban Gioc Waterfall-Lang Son tour, which are both priced at 8.590 million VND (407 USD).
In 2013, Vietnam received 7,572,352 international tourists, a 10.6 percent rise over 2012, bringing 200 trillion VND (9.4 billion USD) for the state coffer.

The tourism sector plans to receive 8 million international visitors, serve 37.5 million domestic tourists and earn 230 billion VND (10.8 million USD) this year.-VNA