Travel firms, hotels, restaurants, airlines, transport firms and other tourism-related service providers would be involved in the program, which would offer attractive discounts and promotions, Nguyen Thi Anh Hoa, deputy director of the city Department of Tourism, said.

This year the sector will focus on markets such as Australia and India and begin new air services to the countries.

It plans to continue its marketing and promotion activities in markets with high growth rates such as the Republic of Korea, Japan, Taiwan (China), and Southeast Asia.

Foreign visitors in HCM City

The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak has significantly affected visitor arrivals, especially from China, which accounted for 30 percent of Vietnam’s international visitors last year.

The number of bookings at three- to five-star hotels in HCM City has fallen by 50 percent after Tet (Lunar New Year) in late January, according to its Department of Tourism.

Hotels serving Chinese-speaking tourists saw a drop of 70 percent, it said.

Some four- and five-star hotels in fact plan to lay off workers as a result of the slump in business.

City travel firms said the number of tour bookings has also decreased by 50 percent.

Huynh Phan Phuong Hoang, deputy general director of Vietravel, said there is almost no new booking for the next two or three months.

“Stimulus packages with discounts of 30 percent and above can help boost the tourism industry.”

Travel- and tourism-related firms want the Government to offer incentives like tax breaks to mitigate the impact of the epidemic.

Source: VNA