Lunar New Year Holidays expected to boost tourism in Vietnam

The tourism and aviation sectors are anticipating a substantial surge in travel during the Lunar New Year (Tet) and a rise in tourist expenditure

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Companies in the tourism and aviation sectors are busily preparing for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday from February 8 to 14, 2024 (or December 29 of the lunar calendar to the 5th day of the Lunar New Year), when travel is expected to surge.

Most people prefer destinations with characteristic festivals of the Tet holiday. Photo: Cong Hung/ The Hanoi Times

Vietnam Airlines Group (including Vietnam Airlines, Pacific Airlines and Vasco) has announced an additional 1,500 flights for the Tet 2023 peak period, mainly on domestic routes when people return to their hometowns or go on vacation.

The national carrier also plans to add more aircraft, hire more staff, and offer attractive fares to passengers.

Vietravel Airlines, Vietnam’s fifth commercial airline, is expected to carry more than 150,000 tourists during the holiday. So far, about 20,000 foreign tourists have booked spring tours, said Nguyen Nguyet Van Khanh, marketing director of Vietravel.

During the Spring travel season in 2024, most customers prefer destinations with characteristic festivals of the holiday. Vietravel Airlines also plans to offer more than 100,000 seats on domestic and international routes during this period, she added.

In 2023, Vietnam welcomed 11.2 million international tourists, according to the Vietnam National Authority of Tourism. Local experts said that relaxed visa policies have made it easier for them to come to Vietnam, which is why the number of foreign visitors to Vietnam has been steadily increasing.

In the context of the tourism industry’s strong recovery efforts, Vietnam has once again won numerous awards at the World Travel Awards 2023, which is expected to be a golden opportunity to promote Vietnamese tourism globally and contribute to the recovery of the inbound market in the coming time.

International tourist flows change significantly due to political conflicts and economic downturns in major tourist source markets. In the Asia-Pacific region, Vietnam stands out as a safe and affordable destination, highly praised by the World Tourism Organization for its safety and reasonable costs for various types of tourists.

Vietnam’s tourism industry aims to welcome over one million international arrivals in the last month of 2023, and the total target for the year is 12.5-13 million visitors.

Hanoi: safe and attractive capital emerging as tourist hotspot
Duong Lam Ancient Village is one of the visitors’ favorite destinations. Photo: Hoang Ha/The Hanoi Times

Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, has contributed to the country’s tourism performance as a safe and attractive destination for foreign tourists.

This year, international arrivals to Hanoi were estimated to reach four million, up 266.7% from 2022 (33.3% higher than planned, equivalent to 57% of 2019 results), while the number of domestic visitors reached 20 million, up 16.3% from 2022, the Hanoi Department of Tourism reported.

Hanoi received 24 million tourists, up 27% from 2022 (9.1% higher than planned, equivalent to 83% of 2019 results). The growth of tourism is boosting the local economy and showcasing Hanoi’s enduring appeal as a sought-after tourist destination.

Total revenue from tourism is estimated to reach VND87.65 trillion (US$3.59 billion), up 45.5% year-on-year (13.83% higher than planned, equivalent to 84.4% of 2019 results).

Dang Huong Giang, director of the city’s Department of Tourism, said the achievements were due to focused destination marketing, creating attractive tour packages and new tourism products, and organizing diverse and vibrant tourism activities.

She said that in 2023, Hanoi’s tourism industry has developed numerous cultural experience tours and night tourism products based on traditional cultural values.

The tourism department has introduced 15 captivating night tourism products that leave a positive impression on visitors, she added.

In addition, several programs have been launched that take advantage of Hanoi’s strengths, such as culinary tourism, MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) tourism, and healthcare tourism.

One of the night tours in Hanoi was launched this year. Photo: Hanoimoi Newspaper

They have cooperated with districts, communes and tourism enterprises to develop new experiential tours related to heritage sites, historical sites and traditional handicraft villages along routes such as the Hanoi Downtown – Thanh Tri – Thuong Tin – Phu Xuyen route, the Hanoi Downtown – Thanh Oai – Ung Hoa – My Duc route, and the Hanoi Downtown – Son Tay – Ba Vi route.

In addition, the industry has continued to develop river tourism products connecting tourist destinations along the Red River and Duong River, completing and further developing the Chuong Duong Do – Bat Trang – Chu Dong Tu Temple tourism route.

“Hanoi will promote cultural and ecological tourism, preserve the cultural identity of ethnic groups, and attract international visitors with new product lines,” Giang said.

The Director of the Hanoi Tourism Department expected the city to achieve comprehensive tourism growth in 2024 in terms of scale and service quality, ensuring sustainable growth in the number and quality of tourists, and maintaining its position as a major tourism center in the country.

In 2024, the city targets welcoming around 26.5 million tourists, including five million international visitors (a 25% increase from 2023) and 21.5 million domestic tourists (a 7.5% increase from 2023). The projected tourism revenue is approximately VND100 trillion (US$4.1 billion), marking a 13.8% increase from 2023.