Hanoi has proposed full reopening for domestic and international tourism from April 1.

Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Manh Quyen called on other localities to agree on the proposal and join the city in preparing a plan to ensure the safety of tourists from Covid-19.

 Home Hanoi Spring 2022 flower street takes place in the outskirt district of Hoai Duc, Hanoi. Photos: Minh An

Quyen proposed to remove the isolation rule for incoming travelers who are fully vaccinated, or recover from Covid-19 six months prior to entry and tested negative for coronavirus. They are required to follow the 5K protocol and make medical declarations.

“The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism set the date for the resumption of tourism on May 1. However, we propose an earlier reopening, on April 1,” Quyen said. “In this way, Vietnam will have one month  to prepare for the launch of the reopening plan.”

Being of the same mind, Vice Chairman of Quang Nam Provincial People’s Committee Tran Van Tan said the province highly agreed with the earlier reopening. However, in order to facilitate businesses to welcome international visitors, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism should soon issue guidelines for the reopening of international air routes to Europe and America, as well as the policy of visa-free entry needs to be restored.

From an expert perspective, Standing Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Tourism Association Vu The Binh said the resumption of tourism is a matter of survival for the Vietnamese economy.

“To attract international tourists, it is necessary to exempt visas for tourists and require them to have negative PCR test results 72 hours before departure. Tourism enterprises should be responsible for implementing regulations,” he added.

The Ministry of Health needs to soon issue clear regulations on isolation for tourists’ information. The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism should build a strong tourism promotion campaign for major tourist destinations, disseminating the image of Vietnam as a safe and friendly destination, Binh suggested.

Local visitors at Home Hanoi Spring 2022 flower street 

Truong Gia Binh, Head of the Research and Development Board of the Prime Minister’s Advisory Council for Administrative Procedure Reform said: “If the country does not reopen to international visitors, Vietnam’s tourism industry will lose its chance to recover. The country should open its doors according to international practices, like many countries in the world.”

According to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, after two months of welcoming international tourists on a trial basis, Phu Quoc Island (Kien Giang), Khanh Hoa and Quang Nam welcomed over 8,500 international tourists with vaccine passports from Russia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Singapore, UK, the US, and Canada.

Director of Kien Giang Department of Tourism Bui Quoc Thai said the province, which is famous for Phu Quoc Island District, has received a total of more than ten flights bringing in more than 1,200 international visitors. It is expected that from now until the end of February 2022, it will welcome an additional 2,200 tourists from Singapore, Malaysia, Mongolia, and Dubai to Phu Quoc. 

“We will focus on welcoming visitors from some traditional markets such as South Korea, the UK, France, Germany, Canada, and Singapore,” he said, adding that the pilot program to welcome international tourists with vaccine passports to Phu Quoc marked the recovery of the tourism industry.