Vietnam Tourism is growing in the era of the Fourth
Industrial Revolution which significantly impacts all sectors of the economy,
including tourism. The Revolution requires the tourism enterprises to renovate
business operation in a more flexible and smarter manner, and also foster
tourism startups with smart tourism products.
In recent years, boom of startup initiatives in technology
application for tourism has been witnessed in Viet Nam, such as creative
startup programs initiated by Song Han Incubator – one of the first private
startup incubators founded in Da Nang since 2017; the contest “Ho Chi Minh City
Innovative Startups in Tourism” held in 2018 by Ho Chi Minh City’s Department
of Tourism and Department of Science and Technology, and many other initiatives
carried out nationwide.
Besides, in the region, the Mekong Innovative Startups in
Tourism launched by Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Mekong Tourism Coordinating
Office (MTCO) also attracted the involvement of Vietnamese tourism startups.
To accelerate tourism growth in the context of strong
development of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the Prime Minister of Viet Nam
has released a Directive on strengthening capacity to embrace the Fourth
Industrial Revolution and released an Overall Project on Technology Application
in Tourism period 2018-2020, direction to 2025. This was one of vital projects
to implement the Government’s action plan on developing tourism into a key
The determination of the Government has helped to create a
favorable environment, enable close connections between stakeholders in tourism
sector and trigger motivation for young tourism startups. By using advanced
technology, startups have brought about added value for tourism products and
destinations. The emergence of software applications and digital tourism
platforms going in line with practical needs could be considered positive
signal to improve competitiveness of Viet Nam tourism.
In 2019, Vietnam National Administration of Tourism in
coordination with Song Han Incubator organized the Contest for Creative
Startups applying technology for tourism development. Lasting from March to
June 2019, the Contest was truly a play ground for talented youth to introduce
their creative products.
The contestants from every region in the country introduced
a lot of creative customer-oriented initiatives such as: enjoying good food,
online hotel booking, self-drive car rental, comparing and choosing vehicles,
using clean energy in tourism, tourism planning tools, sharing experiences...
These initiatives, by applying advanced technologies as Artificial
Intelligence, Big Data, Block chain..., have helped connect tourists and local
services and created outstanding values for their products, contributing to the
establishment of smart tourism ecosystem.
Not only competing in domestic contests, Vietnamese tourism
startups step by step reached out their hands to international competitions. At
the Mekong Innovative Startups in Tourism organized in October 2019 in Bangkok
(Thailand), two Vietnamese startups went through into the Final round,
including Noir Blind Massage & Spa (in the Social Impact category) and
GoEatMe (in the Travel Tech Ventures category).
GoEatMe is a travel and food platform that helps users find
food easily within a short time. GoEatMe’s target customers are international
tourists to Viet Nam, who want to learn about Vietnamese culinary and culture.
In October 2019, Viet Nam was named “Leading Asia’s culinary destination 2019”
by World Travel Awards.
Notably, Noir Blind Massage & Spa was honored the winner
of the competition. Noir is a spa and massage facility staffed by visually
impaired people, providing professional services and high quality experience
Starting a tourism business in the era of the Fourth
Industrial Revolution is a leading movement nowadays. The innovation of young
businesses has led to the creation of many excellent products satisfying
increased demand of tourists, spreading the spirit of entrepreneurship in
tourism community. Vietnam National Administration of Tourism committed to
support the development of creative tourism startups to accelerate Vietnam
tourism growth and actively contribute to the development of GMS tourism./.