Sustainable homestay tourism taking shape

(VOV) - The escalating number of international tourists visiting Vietnam over recent years has motivated almost every ethnic group to set up their own homestay and this type of tourism is rapidly gaining in popularity. For ethnic groups in mountainous areas that cannot make extensive infrastructural investment but possess an abundance of tourism richness, homestays are an attractive tourism product. It entails a tourist living in an ethnic minority household to experience and learn about their way of life including local food and drinks and interaction with family members and friends. The tourist also has an opportunity to partake in daily activities such as cooking, farming and shopping. A few years ago, the livelihood of Giang A Tu and his wife-Ma Thi Chu in Giang Ta Chai village, Ta Van commune, Sapa district in the northern province of Lao Cai centred solely on rice cultivation and selling a few novelty items and souvenirs to passing tourists. Now they operate a homestay, which … [Read more...]

Tourist Attractions: Busy during National Day Holiday

The four-day holiday for National Day 2014 has driven a high travelling demand of Vietnamese people. This is also a golden opportunity for travel operators in Hanoi to discount tour prices, improve service quality and open new tours to draw more tourists. Orders for the holiday have increased from 20 percent from a year ago since June 2014, according to many travel agencies. Tourists are very interested in new domestic destinations. Vietrantour Company has opened air and road tours to Sunspa Quang Binh Resort, Paradise Cave, and General Vo Nguyen Giap Tomb in Vung Chua, Dao Yen, Quang Binh province. Ms Pham Thanh Tam, Head of Domestic Tour Department, Vietrantour Company, said that, with distinctive products and attractive promotion policies, Vietrantour expects to see a sharp rise of 20-30 percent in customers during the National Day holiday. "With lower tour prices than a year ago, as a big travel operator, Vietrantour has managed to sign contracts with domestic and international … [Read more...]

Hanoi forecasts 35% tourist growth during Tet

The Hanoitimes - Hanoi 's tourist industry expects the number of travellers will increase by 35% during the nine-day Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday. Many travel agencies have their Tet tours fully booked as early as one month before Tet. According to Duong Mai Lan, head of the Planning and Marketing Department of the Vietravel Company's Hanoi branch, about 3,000 people have booked tours during the period from December 27 to January 6 (Lunar calendar) via Vietravel Hanoi, a year-on-year rise of 35%. More than 80% of inbound tours have been filled while the figure for outbound tours is 98%, Lan added. Vietrantour Company reported a year-on-year increase of 12% in the number of tourists booking Lunar New Year tours. New destinations and short tours are the choice of most tourists. Among their favourites are the central beach cities of Nha Trang, Da Nang and northern mountainous mountains such as Sapa and Ha Giang. Some regional countries such as Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia … [Read more...]

Hanoi forecasts 35 pct tourist growth during Tet

Hanoi's tourist industry expects the number of travellers will increase by 35 percent during the nine-day Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday. Many travel agencies have their Tet tours fully booked as early as one month before Tet. According to Duong Mai Lan, head of the Planning and Marketing Department of the Vietravel Company's Hanoi branch, about 3,000 people have booked tours during the period from December 27 to January 6 (Lunar calendar) via Vietravel Hanoi, a year-on-year rise of 35 percent. More than 80 percent of inbound tours have been filled while the figure for outbound tours is 98 percent, Lan added. Vietrantour Company reported a year-on-year increase of 12 percent in the number of tourists booking Lunar New Year tours. New destinations and short tours are the choice of most tourists. Among their favourites are the central beach cities of Nha Trang, Da Nang and northern mountainous mountains such as Sapa and Ha Giang. Some regional countries … [Read more...]

VNAT gets tough on re-registrations for int’l tour licenses

VietNamNet Bridge – After September 15, travel companies failing to re-register for their business operations as regulated will lose their licenses for outbound and inbound tours, according to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT). A tour guide introduces Hoi An to foreign tourists in the central province of Quang Nam when they are in the ancient town. Travel firms are required to re-register their business operations; otherwise, they will lose their licenses for outbound and inbound tours – Photo: Dao Loan VNAT said in a statement that the deadline has been extended to September 15 as suggested by many provincial departments of culture, sports and tourism as travel firms have been grappling with difficulties. The tourism authority said travel companies should have completed the renewal of their outbound and inbound travel service licenses as stipulated Decree 180/ND-CP issued on November 14, 2013. "Travel enterprises that do not get the licenses … [Read more...]

Vietnam to pause taking holidaymakers to MERS-infect nations

As the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) spread quickly in many countries especially in Asian nations including China, South Korea and Philippines and it is highly likely to enter Vietnam, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism has asked travel and tourist agents to restrict or halt taking holidaymakers to these disease-infected nations as per the World Health Organization and the Ministry of Health’s warning, said deputy head of the administration Ha Van Sieu yesterday. The administration also asked tourism management agencies, tourist agents and hotels to update information of the disease from the Ministry of Health’s website. Vietnamese Ministry of Health today asked all passengers from these nations including Saudi Arabian, Qatar, Oman, Yemen, Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, Iran, Bahrain, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates to fill health declaration form. Because of the disease over 200 holidaymakers cancelled their trip to South Korea in big tourist … [Read more...]

Viet Nam looks to tap tourism market in India

Vietnam hopes to expand its share in India’s great tourism market in the coming time, a Vietnamese official told a round-table seminar on tourism in New Delhi, India on April 25. The seminar was part of the Global Exhibition on Services (GES) that is underway in New Delhi on April 23-25, with delegates from more than 40 countries taking part. Addressing the seminar, Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism Ha Van Sieu praised the progress of bilateral tourism engagement since the two governments signed a cooperation agreement in 2001. Tourism cooperation is part of the agenda of talks during respective visits by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung last September and October. Ha Van Sieu said with a 1.2 billion population and soaring demand for foreign travel, India is becoming a promising market of Vietnam. However, few Indian tourists go to Vietnam, and most Indian visitors arrive in the country for … [Read more...]

Vietnam looks to tap tourism market in India

Vietnam hopes to expand its share in India’s great tourism market in the coming time, a Vietnamese official told a round-table seminar on tourism in New Delhi, India on April 25. The seminar was part of the Global Exhibition on Services (GES) that is underway in New Delhi on April 23-25, with delegates from more than 40 countries taking part. Addressing the seminar, Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism Ha Van Sieu praised the progress of bilateral tourism engagement since the two governments signed a cooperation agreement in 2001. Tourism cooperation is part of the agenda of talks during respective visits by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung last September and October. Ha Van Sieu said with a 1.2 billion population and soaring demand for foreign travel, India is becoming a promising market of Vietnam. However, few Indian tourists go to Vietnam, and most Indian visitors arrive in the country for … [Read more...]

Korean tourism awards ceremony in Hanoi

(VOV) - The 2014 Korea Double Double Incentive awards ceremony was held on December 12 in Hanoi by the Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) of Vietnam. The country has welcomed more than 70,000 Korean arrivals so far this year, Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Ha Van Sieu revealed at the ceremony. Meanwhile more than 130,000 Vietnamese tourists have visited the Republic of Korea (RoK), Sieu added, noting the impressive figures are the result of the great cooperation between the KTO and Vietnam’s travel agencies. Kang Sungghil, KTO representative office in Vietnam, in turn said the event aims to honour individuals and collectives in Vietnam who have greatly contributed to the development of the tourism industry in the RoK. In 2014, KTO in co-ordination with Vietnamese travel operators had organized many worthy activities and campaigns including those to encourage Vietnamese athletes to compete at the Incheon Asian Games. … [Read more...]

Korean tourism awards ceremony held in Hanoi

(VOV) - The 2014 Korea Double Double Incentive awards ceremony was held on December 12 in Hanoi by the Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) of Vietnam. Vietnam has welcomed more than 70,000 Korean arrivals so far this year, Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Ha Van Sieu revealed at the ceremony. Meanwhile more than 130,000 Vietnamese tourists have visited the Republic of Korea (RoK) Sieu added, noting the impressive figures are the result of the great cooperation between the KTO and Vietnam’s travel agencies. Kang Sungghil, head of representative office of KTO in Vietnam, in turn said the event aims to honour individuals and collectives in Vietnam who have greatly contributed to the development of the tourism industry in the RoK. In 2014, KTO in co-ordination with Vietnamese travel operators and other agencies the KTO had organized many worthy activities and campaigns including those to encourage Vietnamese athletes to compete at the … [Read more...]

Vietnam promotes tourism between Vietnam – Indonesia

The Hanoitimes - On December 3, to promote the exchange of visitors between the two countries Vietnam and Indonesia, a conference on tourism between Vietnam and Indonesia was held by Vietnam National Administration of Tourism. The event drew participations of tour companies, hotels, over 10 enterprises, Indonesia's media which are exploring destinations in Vietnam. Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration ofTourism Ha Van Sieu said the traditional friendly relation, strategic partnership Vietnam - Indonesia have been established and continually strengthened. With nearly 250 million people, the proportion of the population belonging to the middle class and their needs to travel abroad are increasing. Indonesia has become a potential market with an important source of tourist arrivals to Vietnam . In 2013, roughly 8 million Indonesians traveling overseas including 88.6% of those travelled to Asia - Pacific, while the number of Indonesian visitors to … [Read more...]

Hungary communications delegation visits Vietnam

(VOV) - A Hungarian delegation comprising representatives of TV stations, press and travel agents are visiting Vietnam’s famous landscape and tourism sites and enjoying cuisines. Chairwoman of the Fund for Hungary-Vietnam Relations Phan Bich Thien said the delegation includes representatives of Hungary TV 2, HVG magazine, Turizmus Trend, Nepszabadsag, index.hu and travel agents. After visiting Ho Chi Minh City, Hoi An, Danang, Hanoi and Ha Long bay, they will make TV programmes and write articles on Vietnam’s tourism to introduce to Hungarian people. Thien added that the delegation members have deep impression on Vietnam and agreed that the country has great tourism potential with long and beautiful beaches, rich nature, hospitable people and delicious dishes. Kohegyi Anna, Editor-in-chief of Aktiv TV programme on TV2 said during their time in Vietnam they had tasted dozens of delicious dishes. Ha Van Sieu, Deputy Director of the Vietnam National Administration of … [Read more...]

Northern provinces establish partnership for tourism development

The four northern provinces of Bac Giang, Thai Nguyen, Hai Duong, and Quang Ninh need to work together closely to tap into their tourism potential, according to participants in a workshop in Bac Giang on October 4. The event concluded that tourism in the four localities, which are rich in natural and cultural resources, could generate substantial revenue from cooperating and developing new tourism services. Participants pointed out the lax coordination between the provincial tourism sectors. In particular, Thai Nguyen, Bac Giang and Hai Duong were yet to make full use of their proximity to Hanoi and Quang Ninh, two major tourism hubs in northern Vietnam , thus limiting the number of international tourists to the area. Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism Ha Van Sieu said the localities needed to base their tourism cooperation on the specific features of each province and the common regional identity to create appropriate tourism services that … [Read more...]

Southeast Asian rivers set to become tourism products

A traditional Khmer boat race on the Mekong River in Vietnam. Photo credit: Vietnamplus Southeast Asian tourism officials agreed further utilize the region's web of rivers during a meeting in Ho Chi Minh City on Monday. Officials at the conference, which included experts from the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), pointed to the connective power of 33 big rivers in the region, including the Mekong which runs through Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, Thoi Bao Kinh Te Saigon reported. The officials said they will establish river-based tours by turning the Mekong and its basins into a tourism product. Hans Jacobsen from UNWTO said the ASEAN river network can create a collection of dynamic destinations that one cannot find anywhere else. Ha Van Sieu, deputy head of Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said officials in each country will come up with their own development plans and cooperation proposals with other bloc members -- all of which will be … [Read more...]

ASEAN countries discuss waterway tourism

Dao Loan A survey shows that aside from numerous small rivers, there are as many as 33 big rivers running through the region, including the Mekong River, which connects many regional nations and therefore, holds potential for tourism development. The tourism sectors of the ten countries have aimed to make the most of the enormous potential of rivers in the region to open attractive waterway tours instead of developing tourism on only a part of the river system as done currently. According to their plan, each country will have their own waterway tourism services. At the same time, they will focus on main rivers which flow through many countries such as the Mekong River, which connects Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia, to develop specific tours for the region. Hans Jacobsen, consultant at UNWTO, said the river system in ASEAN is able to create a connection among eventful destinations which can hardly be found anywhere in the world. Ha Van Sieu, deputy head of the Vietnam … [Read more...]

Foreigners jump into convenience store market as domestic investors withdraw

VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnamese retailers have withdrawn from the convenience store market after a long period of incurring losses, leaving the market more open to foreign retailers, who have been expanding their chains. Convenience stores are not a lucrative business field for Vietnamese investors, as they once thought. It is estimated that investors have to pay VND1.5-2 billion to develop a store. High rent at retail premises and high operation expenses eat into their revenue from convenience stores. Nguyen Bao Loc, deputy general director of Intimex Vietnam, noted that retailers could only make satisfactory profits if the rent is no more than $9 per square meter a month. However, the average rent in central areas and advantageous positions is $30-50 per square meter a month. Robert Tran, CEO of Robenny Corporation, said that investors need to develop hundreds of shops in Vietnam, double or triple than in other countries, to be able to make profits. In general, a convenience … [Read more...]

VNA bolsters cooperation with Mexican counterpart

Deputy General Director of Vietnam News Agency Nguyen Hoai Duong (R); Notimex Director General Alejandro Ramos Esquivel (Photo: VNA) Vietnam News Agency (VNA) and the Notimex Mexican News Agency have signed a cooperation agreement for the 2015-2016 period to reciprocally provide domestic and international information services in news, photos, and audiovisual products. VNA Deputy General Director Nguyen Hoai Duong and Notimex Director General Alejandro Ramos Esquivel reached the consensus during the former’s working visit to Mexico on July 20-24. Both sides highly valued the implementation of information exchanges between the two news agencies over the past year. They discussed measures to put in place and improve the efficiency of cooperation agreements with focus on exchanges of news, photos, audio and visual products. Director General Alejandro underlined Notimex’s interest in Vietnam’s land, people, history, and culture as well as political and economic … [Read more...]

Viettel wants level playing field

Customers at a Viettel store. Viettel Telecom has asked the Ministry of Information and Communications to revoke regulations controlling businesses with dominant market shares. — VNS Photo Truong Vi HA NOI (VNS) — At a conference at the Ministry of Information and Communications (MoIC) this week, Viettel Telecoms asked the Ministry to revoke regulations controlling businesses with dominant market shares. According to Vietnam Economic Times, the Deputy General Director of Viettel Telecoms, Hoang Son, made the request. MoIC had issued Circular No15 to amend a number of provisions of Circular No18/2012/TT-MIC on telecommunications business and groups of telecommunications business with large market shares, effective from June 15, 2015. Businesses accounting for over 30 per cent of the market share are required to register with the MoIC and guarantee that their prices are not less than their costs. Businesses without significant market share, meanwhile, are allowed to … [Read more...]

National pride gets hurt

Anh Thu Regional countries like Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia have become destinations of choice as tour prices are affordable and no entry visa is required for ASEAN citizens who pay short visits. Furthermore, many Vietnamese tourists have many times repeated their visits to these places thanks to the increasing availability of cheap air tickets. However, an increasingly big number of Vietnamese travelers, particularly women, have been stopped at Changi airport by Singapore immigration authorities for interrogation and many of them have been denied entry and sent back home for unknown reasons. Lots of Vietnamese tourists who do not speak English or who look helpless while waiting for their turns at immigration counters can be easily taken to a separate immigration control room. A news report by Thanh Nien Online says Singapore airport security officers are always on hand to rush those Vietnamese passengers who look helpless to the interrogation room while they queue for … [Read more...]

Vietnam Airlines to divest non-core firms

HA NOI (VNS) — Vietnam Airlines is speeding up divestment of non-core businesses. Dau tu (Viet Nam Investment Review) newspaper reported that the carrier's divested amount totalled VND505.64 billion (US$23.19 million) in terms of face value of shares, accounting for about 85 per cent of all values intended for withdrawal. On July 7 alone, the company sold its entire stake worth VND100 billion ($4.59 million) in the Viet Nam Aviation Insurance JSC in an auction for VND109.55 billion ($5.03 million). The firm has basically pulled out of "sensitive" sectors such as banking and finance and property, selling its stakes in Techcombank, Hoa Binh Securities, Bao Minh Insurance and Vietnam Airlines Investment. Phan Xuan Duc, deputy general director of the carrier, said it would sell its stakes in businesses involved in printing, postal services, transportation, construction and plastic production this year. Of these firms, Airport Engineering Consultancy and Services last year paid a … [Read more...]