Like many other industries, Vietnam’s tourism industry has been especially hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. It is thought that over $4 trillion could be lost in global revenues as a result of the virus’ impact on tourism worldwide, and it’s easy to see how a nation like Vietnam has been affected.
While Vietnam had a relatively short lockdown, it still struggled to keep visitor numbers from within the nation coming to key tourist sites. This was made all the more difficult due to the fact that international flights were effectively curtailed for many months. As such, it is thought that marginally more than 25% of the nations’ hotel rooms were filled in autumn 2020.
The lack of foreign visitors had a particularly grave impact on the overall spend in Vietnam’s tourist industry. It has been estimated that visitors from abroad will typically spend over 10-times that of a domestic tourist. What’s particularly worrying is the ripple-effect that this is having on many more industries in a nation that has grown ever more reliant upon the revenues brought in from foreign visitors. So what can be done to help draw in visitors back to Vietnam?
Opening up with caution
Much of Vietnam’s opening up will be guarded in correlation with how the pandemic is progressing worldwide. There has been the suggestion that travel bubbles with countries with low infection rates like Australia could be a step forward, and this could be an important stepping tone in the gradual lifting of travel restrictions.
All of which could give a much needed lifeline to Vietnam’s hotels that are still operating with much lower room occupancy than normal. Hotels in other countries have other ways of keeping revenues flowing in. For example the Resorts casino resort has an online presence and customers can go to the article to learn more about the bonuses.
Night at the Hard Rock @ Credit: Gerson Repreza
Such an approach is obviously beyond the reach of most Vietnamese hotels and therefore much needs to be done to boost domestic tourism before international restrictions open. Such an approach will focus on outdoor tourism such as the nation’s famous beaches and mountains to ensure that things stay affordable and safe.
In addition to this, there is a real need to promote the specialist areas in which key locations of Vietnam operate. For example, the area around Dalat should be internationally known for the quality of its hiking, and the same is true for Mui Ne in terms of water sports.
Thankfully Vietnam has been enjoying a much greater boost in terms of the tourism infrastructure for when visitor numbers return to normal. After all, the Tan Son Nhat airport was listed as one of the world’s best and it’s this dedication to investing in infrastructure that’s going to determine Vietnam’s success over the long term.
Ultimately, there are still so many unknowns regarding how the pandemic will play out, that any attempt at a long-term plan should be extremely cautious. Short-term steps such as encouraging a greater domestic tourism effort are essential for keeping the nation’s hotels and ancillary industries in business.
Similarly, greater efforts will need to be made to ensure that Vietnam is up to the task once travel restrictions start to open. Effectively marketing Vietnam as a cost-effective travel destination on digital platforms is key to helping raise the profile of the nation. All of which will take time and money, but it’s essential that further investment is needed if Vietnam wishes to continue the impressive tourism figures that it enjoyed before the pandemic struck.
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