Foreign tourists visit Hoi An ancient town in Quang Nam Province on November 20, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Duy Hau
Vietnamese tourism expects to welcome five million international visitors under the ongoing vaccine passport program in 2022 an industry official says.
The industry also hopes to earn revenues of VND400 trillion ($17.5 billion) next year, Nguyen Trung Khanh, head of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said at a seminar on tourism recovery held Friday.
In more than a month after partial reopening of international tourism following nearly two years of closure over the Covid-19 pandemic, Vietnam has welcomed 3,500 foreign visitors on special tour packages.
"This was a great encouragement for the tourism industry after more than 19 months," Khanh is quoted as saying in a report on the tourism ministry portal.
Quang Nam, Quang Ninh, Kien Giang, Khanh Hoa and Da Nang, home to several UNESCO heritage sites, got the green light to allow in foreign visitors under the vaccine passport trial program starting mid-November.
All foreign guests need to furnish certificates showing they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from Covid and to have tested negative for the novel coronavirus within 72 hours before departure.
They are also required to install the IGOVN and PC-Covid health declaration applications on their smartphones while in Vietnam.
2021 continued to be a rough year for Vietnam’s tourism industry, Khanh said.
According to initial estimates, the industry has served 40 million domestic tourists this year, down 20 percent year-on-year, with revenues reaching VND180 trillion.
Vietnam reopened domestic tourism early October as the government changed its strategy from ensuring zero Covid cases to living safely with the virus.
In 2019, the year before the onset of the pandemic, Vietnam welcomed a record 18 million foreign tourists. Last year, it recorded a 79 percent decline year-on-year in the number of foreign visitors due to travel restrictions.