|My Son Sanctuary is popular tourist attraction in Quang Nam province. (Photo: VOV)
In 2020 and 2021 Vietnam’s tourism was stifled by the COVID-19 pandemic. In early 2022 Vietnam became one of the first Southeast Asian countries to reopen for tourism and remove all restrictions for travelers. On March 15 Vietnam officially reopened all road, sea, railway, and airway border gates. Vietnam’s pre-pandemic visa policy was resumed.
Google Search data shows that Vietnam is one of the world’s most-searched tourist destinations. Many tourism businesses jumped at the opportunity to recover.
Nguyen Thi Bich Hue, Director of Vinh Tien Company, said: “The Vinh Tien Tourism Company closed for 8 months in 2021 and for 6 months in 2020. In order to survive, we reviewed activities and calculated all expenses to conserve resources. When tourism resumed, we received a lot of customers. This summer our car park was always full. We saw a boom of tourists after two years of lockdown due to the pandemic. We prepared for the turnaround and 2022 was a successful year for us.”
|Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh chairs the meeting to attract foreign tourists to Vietnam. (Photo: kinhtedothi.vn)
In the first 11 months this year Vietnam welcomed more than 2.95 million foreign arrivals, 21 times the previous year. The number of domestic tourists reached 96 million, higher than the total number in 2019. This turnaround has given the tourism industry the confidence to move forward in 2023.
Last Wednesday in Hanoi Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh addressed a conference on attracting foreign tourists to Vietnam.
“We have to change our tourism mindset in the post-COVID-19 period, to be more flexible in our approach, to diversify our markets and products, and to provide the services that tourists want, not just what we have. This is an opportunity for us to restructure Vietnam's tourism industry. Tourism development must parallel the development of other economic sectors."
"It’s necessary to simultaneously develop international tourism and domestic tourism, green and sustainable tourism with a focus on professionalism, modernity, diversity, and Vietnamese uniqueness. We must flexibly adapt, innovate, and speed up digital transformation,” PM Chinh said.
The Vietnamese government has created favorable conditions for tourists, including visa exemptions for 24 countries and territories, a resumption of pre-pandemic immigration procedures, and e-visas for 80 countries and territories.