Air tickets to tourist hotspots almost sold out for weekend holiday
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Passengers crowd Noi Bai Airport in Hanoi, April 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Phan Cong
Many flights and train tickets to tourist destinations during the Reunification Day and Labor Day holiday next weekend are nearly fully booked, with prices for remaining seats double the norm.
A survey by VnExpress found that flights at reasonable hours from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to popular tourist hotspots like Quy Nhon, Da Nang, Nha Trang, Da Lat and Con Dao Island have been sold out. Tickets for early morning and late-night flights are still available, but fares are double the norm.
On the Vietnam Airlines website, a one-way ticket from Hanoi to Phu Quoc Island in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang on April 29 costs from VND4.1 million ($178.41) while business class tickets are nearly VND7 million.
On the afternoon of May 3, there were only a few seats left for the Phu Quoc-Hanoi route at the same price.
Vietjet Air stated there's no slots for the Hanoi-Phu Quoc route on April 30.
For the route from Hanoi to Con Dao, Bamboo Airways said flights that depart on April 30 and May 1 were fully booked two weeks ago.
On April 29, there were only a few one-way business class seats left at VND7.6 million per person.
On the Con Dao-Hanoi route on May 3, all five flights are full. On May 2 and 4, there are few seats left on early morning flights.
Last month, Vietnam Airlines announced an increase of 2,300 flights and 450,000 seats during the four-day holiday break (April 30-May 3) and said it has sold over 90 percent of all seats.
A representative of Bamboo Airways said travel demand increased quickly after the pandemic situation was brought under control and travel restrictions were lifted, with the number of passengers to exceed that in 2019.
The airline has recorded a seat occupancy rate on its domestic routes of 90-92 percent during the upcoming holiday.
Dinh Viet Thang, head of the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam, said the number of passengers traveling by air during the long holiday next week will increase by 25-30 percent against normal days and reach about 90-95 percent against the same period last year.
Regarding infrastructure at the country’s two busiest airports, two runways at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi that were closed for a few months for upgrades resumed operation from Saturday morning while the repaired runway at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC is expected to begin operation from April 27.
Noi Bai airport is expected to have the highest daily capacity of more than 500 flights and approximately 78,000-80,000 passengers, mainly domestic.
Authorities advise passengers to arrive at the airport two hours before flight time for domestic flights and three hours for international flights to avoid congestion.
On the ticket booking website of Vietnam Railways Corporation, train services from Hanoi to Hai Phong, famous for Lan Ha Bay, and Dong Hoi, near world’s largest cave Son Doong, are nearly sold out for April 30 while there’s only a few return seats on May 3.
In the south, Saigon Railway Transport Joint Stock Company said train services from HCMC to Phan Thiet and Nha Trang are full.
Some tourist hotspots like Vung Tau, Phu Quoc Island in the south, Da Lat in the Central Highlands and Sa Pa in the northern highlands are both expected to see huge crowds during the next weekend holiday.
Vietnam's domestic tourism has been recovering after two years of Covid. Crowds overran tourist hotspots during the Lunar New Year holiday in February and Hung Kings festival two weeks ago.
Currently, there are no longer any travel restrictions for domestic tourism.