Italy, Ireland named as potential tourist markets
Vietnam’s tourism sector encouraged to do more to attract Italian and Irish tourists
Vietnam should do more to attract Italian and Irish tourists, who have little knowledge of the country and therefore little desire to visit, a workshop heard Wednesday.
Domestic tour operators gathered in Hanoi for the workshop on the untapped potential of European markets, Vietnam News Agency reported.
The event was organized by the Vietnam Human Resources Development in Tourism Project. The project has been underway since 2005 with a total budget of 12 million euros (US$15.6 million) from the European Commission and the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism.
Most European visitors to Vietnam are from France, the U.K. and Germany, while the number of tourists from Italy and Ireland remains small, according to the experts at the workshop.
Vietnam did not rate as a favored destination among Irish and Italian travelers, who instead consider Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia as “must-see” destinations in Southeast Asia.
Most visitors from Italy were taken aback by the country’s lack of direct flights from Italy to Vietnam, the dearth of hotels rated four stars and above and the country’s complicated visa procedures, Serane Valle, an Italian tourism market expert, told the workshop.
Promotional activities to promote tours to Vietnam in Italy were also limited, she said, and most Italians only associated Vietnam with its past wars.
Vietnam’s high hotel room rates and transport costs were key reasons the country was not so attractive in the eyes of Irish travelers, the workshop heard.
To take advantage of the relatively untapped Italian and Irish markets, Vietnam should step up tourism promotional activities on the Internet and organize exhibitions and seminars in the two countries to expose Italian and Irish people to Vietnam’s unique culture and people.
Domestic tour operators were also provided with tourism market guidance on the U.K., Germany, Spain, France and the Scandinavian region at previous workshops held in Vietnam in 2006 and 2008.
Source : vietnewsonline.vn
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