Vietnam would soon be wavering visas for more countries and extending the duration of the stay for foreign tourists to boost tourism and recover faster, reported a local news report. The statement was made by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on Wednesday at a conference on post-Covid tourism recovery. Further, he also added that the Vietnam authorities would create “favorable conditions for domestic and international airlines to open direct routes connecting Vietnam with key tourism markets.” The list of eligible countries for e-visa issuance would be expanded.
Vietnam has already waived tourist visas for 25 countries however, the number is still less if compared to other southeast Asian countries like Malaysia – 162, Philippines – 157, and Thailand – 68. The Sun Group Chairman, Dang Minh Truong has kept the proposal in which “the government is asked to consider exempting visas for tourists from key markets such as Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Belgium”, as per the media reports. Notably, the multi-entry three-month visa for Vietnam that was available before the Coronavirus pandemic has not been brought back.
According to one of the local media reports, usually in Vietnam, tourists stay for 8-12 days, spending $1,100 to 2,000 per trip whereas domestic tourists have been seen traveling on weekends, staying one or two days. With this new proposed plan of visa exemption, a 15-day period of visa-free stay and travel would be increased to 30 or 45 days, allowed for tourists from key markets such as Europe.
“In 2019, the number of international visitors to Vietnam was 21% of domestic tourists, but revenues from international tourists accounted for nearly two-thirds of the country’s total tourism revenue,” said Truong.
According to the chairwoman of real estate developer BRG, Nguyen Thi Nga has asked the Vietnam authorities to extend the length of the stay for international visitors as soon as possible, which would help in increasing tourism revenue. Even though Vietnam has been the first southeast Asian country to fully open tourism for visitors post covid, the country received only 3.6 million foreign tourists last year, around 20% of pre-pandemic levels. Presently, citizens from Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Kyrgyzstan have been offered a visa-free stay of 30 days whereas tourists from Chile and Panama have a bandwidth of 90 days.
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