Vietnam’s tourism to take a heavy hit from virus crisis

Almost empty beach in Da Nang © Arno Maierbrugger

Vietnam’s main tourist spots are becoming deserted after the country banned all flights to and from China and stopped receiving Chinese tourists, as well as suspended all spring festivals amid the fast-spreading coronavirus epidemic. As a result, tourism receipts could drop by $7.7 billion in the next three months, the official Voice of Vietnam radio reported.

In particular, popular destinations  for Chinese such as Ha Long Bay in northern Vietnam, the beach resort cities Nha Trang and Da Nang in central Vietnam and the historic site of Hoi An are by far not crowded as usual during this time of the year.

The crisis comes at a time when Vietnam is in the midst of a tourism boom, with an all-time high of 18 million international visitors in 2019, up 16.2 per cent year-on-year. With its visa waivers, the government originally expected 20.5 million visitors in 2020 and revenues of $35 billion, equivalent to ten per cent of GDP.

However, the tourism sector estimates to see two million fewer Chinese visitors due to the virus. China was Vietnam’s biggest source of foreign tourists last year, accounting for around a third of total visitors, official data shows.

Vietnam will also stop issuing visas for all foreign visitors who had been in China in the past two weeks.

The government said its GDP growth in the first quarter of this year will likely be one percentage point lower” than the original 6.8 -per cent target.

Almost empty beach in Da Nang © Arno Maierbrugger Vietnam’s main tourist spots are becoming deserted after the country banned all flights to and from China and stopped receiving Chinese tourists, as well as suspended all spring festivals amid the fast-spreading coronavirus epidemic. As a result, tourism receipts could drop by $7.7 billion in the next three months, the official Voice of Vietnam radio reported. In particular, popular destinations  for Chinese such as Ha Long Bay in northern Vietnam, the beach resort cities Nha Trang and Da Nang in central Vietnam and the historic site of Hoi An are by...

Almost empty beach in Da Nang © Arno Maierbrugger

Vietnam’s main tourist spots are becoming deserted after the country banned all flights to and from China and stopped receiving Chinese tourists, as well as suspended all spring festivals amid the fast-spreading coronavirus epidemic. As a result, tourism receipts could drop by $7.7 billion in the next three months, the official Voice of Vietnam radio reported.

In particular, popular destinations  for Chinese such as Ha Long Bay in northern Vietnam, the beach resort cities Nha Trang and Da Nang in central Vietnam and the historic site of Hoi An are by far not crowded as usual during this time of the year.

The crisis comes at a time when Vietnam is in the midst of a tourism boom, with an all-time high of 18 million international visitors in 2019, up 16.2 per cent year-on-year. With its visa waivers, the government originally expected 20.5 million visitors in 2020 and revenues of $35 billion, equivalent to ten per cent of GDP.

However, the tourism sector estimates to see two million fewer Chinese visitors due to the virus. China was Vietnam’s biggest source of foreign tourists last year, accounting for around a third of total visitors, official data shows.

Vietnam will also stop issuing visas for all foreign visitors who had been in China in the past two weeks.

The government said its GDP growth in the first quarter of this year will likely be one percentage point lower” than the original 6.8 -per cent target.

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