An Bang beach is a famous destination in Hoi An. (Photo: vntrip)
The programme serves as a catalyst to lure more European tourists while creating venue for tourism enterprises to bolster cooperation. It is scheduled in Zurich (Switzerland), Munich (Germany), Vienna (Austria), Budapest (Hungary) and Prague (the Czech Republic).
Recently, Edelweiss, Switzerland’s leading leisure airline, announced that it will open a direct air route connecting Zurich and Ho Chi Minh City. This is the first direct flight between the two countries, aiming to reduce travel times and create impetus for bilateral tourism and trade development.
Vietnam’s renowned tourism hotspots have become increasingly alluring for Swiss nationals. The carrier plans to bring 10,500 passengers to the Vietnamese southern hub every year. In 2017, Vietnam welcomed 32,000 Swiss arrivals and the figure is expected to rise 10 percent every year thanks to the direct flight.
The Czech Republic and Austria are potential markets for Vietnam’s tourism, therefore, it is crucial to focus more on promotion activities in those countries.
As Germany is deemed as a significant market, the Vietnamese tourism sector should accelerate marketing and promotion programmes to lure more German tourists, particularly the introduction of the country’s visa policy for five western European countries, including Germany.
From 2015, the Vietnamese Government decided to extend visa exemptions by an additional year for tourists from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. The policy will last until 2020 to attract tourists from those countries.
Spurred by visa exemption policy and tourism promotion campaigns, number of western European visitors to Vietnam surged rapidly.
In 2015, the country served 720,000 western European holiday-makers while the number increased to 1.5 million people in 2017.
In the first five months of this year, Vietnam welcomed 976,000 visitors from Europe, a year-on-year increase of 11.8 percent.
Vietnam’s tourism promoted in Switzerland’s Zurich
The Vietnam tourism promotion programme was launched in Zurich, the leading economic and financial centre in the northeast of Switzerland on June 20.
Over 100 representatives from Swiss and European tourism and economic cooperation development agencies attended the event, which was co-hosted by the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, the national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines and the Embassy of Vietnam in Switzerland.
Speaking at the event, General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism Nguyen Van Tuan affirmed that Vietnam has been known as an increasingly attractive destination for tourists and international friends thanks to its cultural and natural diversity, and local hospitality.
Vietnam welcomed 13 million foreign tourists in 2017, up 30 percent from 2016. Over 33,000 of them were from Switzerland, marking an annual rise of over 5 percent, he said.
He added that the event aims to increase Swiss tourist arrivals to Vietnam in the near future.
Marc Townsend, Chairman of the Vietnam Committee under the Swiss-Asian Chamber of Commerce shared his real-life experiences in living and working in Vietnam, affirming that Vietnam remains a leading destination in Southeast Asia.
A Vietnam Airlines representative took the occasion to introduce its European market expansion plan.
Switzerland’s Edelweiss Air also talked about its plan to open a direct flight route linking Zurich with Ho Chi Minh City in November.
Participants were also entertained with Vietnamese puppetry and music shows at the event.-VNA