Regional Covid-19 outbreaks challenge Vietnam’s resumption of int’l tourism

Vietnam has planned to reopen its doors to international tourists in the coming months but the plan is being hindered due to the complicated development of Covid-19 in other countries in the region.

Regional Covid-19 outbreaks challenge Vietnam’s resumption of int’l tourism
Tourists enjoy themselves on a beach in Nha Trang City, which attracted many international tourists before the Covid-19 pandemic – Photo: Dao Loan/SGT

According to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism’s plan, Vietnam will pilot resuming international tourism from July to September 2021, with a focus on seaside resorts and golf services for tourists from South Korea.

The ministry chose the Southern Hoi An region and Chu Lai Airport in Quang Nam Province, which meet the requirements on transport, healthcare and tourism infrastructure, to pilot resuming international tourism.

The government of Quang Nam said it is willing to collaborate with ministries and departments for this purpose.

Some businesspeople said by piloting resuming international tourism from July to September, Vietnam would be able to reopen its doors to international tourists by later this year.

Besides Quang Nam, some other localities also want to pilot resuming international tourism to help the industry recover. Kien Giang Province wants to welcome Russian tourists to resorts on Phu Quoc Island.

Nguyen Trung Khanh, chairman of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said to prepare for the resumption of international tourism, localities must implement effective Covid-19 infection prevention and control measures and enhance the close cooperation between destinations, travel companies, accommodation facilities and transport companies to ensure safety for tourists, the community and tourism staff. 

Pressure from regional Covid-19 situation

Resuming international tourism amid Covid-19 is a great challenge, with many requirements such as negotiations with source markets, effective control over unexpected incidents and ensuring the capacity of the tourism and health system.

To collaborate with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to pilot resuming international tourism, Quang Nam Province has asked the Ministry of Health for support.


The province suggested that the ministry put in place regulations on medical requirements for international tourists and solutions to ensure their safety, give guidance in case there are tourists infected with Covid-19 and determine the fees related to Covid-19 infection prevention and control.

The province also wants to vaccinate all officials and employees that have close contact with tourists and negotiate with source markets on recognizing Covid-19 testing results and immigration policies.

“Vietnam has effectively put the pandemic under control and sped up Covid-19 vaccination. However, I’m worried that the recent outbreaks in other countries such as Cambodia, Thailand and India will prevent Vietnam from accelerating the resumption of international tourism,” a businessman in HCMC said.

Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Van Hung said resuming international tourism is a big challenge, involving many relevant agencies. Therefore, the Government will be very careful, resume international tourism step by step and prioritize safety.

The Government will not sacrifice the people’s health and safety for economic benefits.

Vietnam earlier planned to resume international tourism last year but the plan was ruined by the second Covid-19 wave.