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Vietnam domestic travel stalls

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HANOI, 7 May 2020: Vietnam’s long weekend holiday for Reunification and  Labor Day (30 April – 1 May) failed to deliver the turnout of domestic tourists that experts forecasted.

Across the country, travel demand went off the boil even though the country relaxed lockdown measures.

VN Express a daily online news service said around 8,000 tourists visited Sapa, down 33% year-on-year, according to the Sa Pa’s Culture and Tourism Department. Sa Pa is a popular resort town in Lao Cai Province, northern Vietnam.

Attractions in the northern province of Ninh Binh like Trang An limestone complex, Bai Dinh, Tam Coc and Bich Dong repeated the same story with fewer visitors this year booking the fleet of boats to view the limestone attractions.

A representative of the Tourism Department in Quang Ninh Province, home to UNESCO world heritage site of Halong Bay in northern Vietnam, said, domestic tourists, were concerned about their health safety especially if the trip required a flight. 

A Danang Tourism Department official said domestic visitor arrivals dropped to 5,800 during down 98.5% year-on-year.

Officials said international visitors accounted for around 600, mostly expatriates who could not catch flights out of Vietnam. Many had to renew their visas with the going rate through authorised agents as high as USD750 for a 30-day extension.

Of the country’s 270 Covid-19 cases, 51 are active, and the remaining 219 have been discharged from hospital. There have been 12 relapses to date.

Vietnam banned entry for foreign nationals since 22 March except for special cases. International flights were suspended 25 March.

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