Central Vietnam needs lifestyle attractions

QUANG NAM, 13 June 2017: Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister Vy Duc Dam says the country’s central coastlands and central highlands should develop community-based tourism and introduce lifestyle and traditional cultural values to attract more visitors.

Cashing in on ‘travel experience’ trending that goes beyond just sightseeing to offer insights into cultural and lifestyle, destinations believe they can add more value and gain more repeat business.

Local media quoted the deputy PM Dam saying international tourists now preferr to travel to Vietnam to experience lifestyle and traditional culture rather than just staying at luxury hotels and resorts and having a passive holiday experience.

“The region should boost community-based tourism to boost sustainable green industry and stable income,” he said.

The deputy PM also warned that the standard of human resources and hospitality management was below the required level to serve upscale tourism, and more needed to be done to protect the environment.

Vietnam Tourism Association chairman, Vu The Binh, claimed the tourism handling capacity in the region was far behind Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.

Despite hosting 6.4 million foreign tourists in 2016, the region only earned VND71 trillion (USD3.1 billion) – 17.7% of the country’s tourism income.

The region has nearly 400 hotels and resorts – 39% of country’s total – but only 49% of room were able to accommodate in international tourists.

Meanwhile, number of travel agencies has reached around 10% of the country’s total, and tour guides (2,000 persons) only represented 12% of the country’s total tour guide workforce.

Nineteen provinces and cities in the region employed 350,000 direct and indirect employees, but nearly 40% were unskilled, the chairman added.