13:00 | 13/10/2020 Culture & Tourism
(VEN) - Vietnamese localities are preparing to stimulate domestic tourism to salvage what little is left of tourism prospects for the rest of the year, but with the peak season over, expectations in the industry are not high.
The Tourism Advisory Board (TAB) said the Covid-19 pandemic had devastated the tourism and aviation sectors. The July outbreak in the coastal tourism hub of Da Nang dealt an almost fatal blow to domestic tourism, which had just begun to emerge from the harsh effects of the first wave of the disease and show signs of life.
For example, in the week immediately before July 25, Victoria Hoi An Beach Resort & Spa welcomed 160 guests per day; within days that figure plunged to zero. The InterContinental Phu Quoc resort was welcoming an average of 200 guests per day, but by the beginning of August there were less than 20 guests per day. Many hotels have simply closed and are offered for sale.
Given the uncertain prospects of reviving foreign tourism, Vietnam like many countries focused on stimulating domestic travel over the peak summer season, encouraged by data of the UN World Tourism Organization showing that in 2018, there were about nine billion domestic trips worldwide, six times the number of foreign visitors (1.4 billion in 2018).
|Many localities are implementing domestic tourism stimulus packages|
In September, after a second wave of the pandemic emerged, UNWTO Secretary General Zurab Pololikashvili recommended stimulating “large-scale domestic tourism to help many destinations recover rapidly from the economic damage caused by the pandemic, while contributing to protecting jobs, livelihoods and ensuring that society enjoys the benefits of tourism.” Suggested incentives for domestic tourism include travel vouchers, discounts, package deals, and more.
The tourism association of the south-central coastal province of Khanh Hoa plans to follow this advice, offering quality services at preferential prices exclusively for local residents as soon as the pandemic is controlled.
In order to support the tourism industry, Quang Ninh Province has cut in half the fares for Ha Long Bay attractions and sightseeing. It is offering free tickets for upcoming events such as Vietnamese Women’s Day (October 20), the traditional days of miners and coal workers (November 12), and Vietnamese Teachers’ Day (November 20).
The TAB and VnExpress Electronic Newspaper are coordinating to survey the needs and consumer trends of Vietnamese tourists in preparation for the second phase of the domestic tourism stimulus plan until the end of 2020. TAB Secretariat head Hoang Nhan Chinh said the findings of the survey would include data, observations, analysis and trends helping the tourism industry, localities and businesses to develop a thorough recovery plan in keeping with market trends and visitor concerns.