Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI – The annual Việt Nam International Travel Mart will be organised at the Friendship Culture Palace in downtown Hà Nội between April 6 and 9, gathering more than 650 travel enterprises from 43 localities in Việt Nam and 24 other countries and territories.
“A highlight of this mart is that it aims at American market,” said Vũ Thế Bình, chairman of Việt Nam Tourism Association, “The organisers will invite a delegation of 15 travel agencies from the US to join the event.”
American enterprises will meet their Vietnamese counterparts, while the Việt Nam Society of Travel Agents will sign a co-operation agreement with the American Society of Travel Agents, the first act of its kind in tourism field, he said.
The agreement will open chances for Vietnamese enterprises to draw tourists from the US and facilitate Vietnamese travel to the US, he said.
Each year, Việt Nam receives 500,000 – 600,000 tourists from the US, but most of them are of Vietnamese origin visiting their homeland. The number of first-time tourists from the US is still limited.
Also at the event, for the first time, a festival of street food will be showcased with the participants of dozens of famed chefs throughout the country and in Asia.
The Centre for Vietnamese Cuisine Research, Preservation and Development will officially open on the same day.
The HCM City Tourism Association-run centre will be based in the southern hub and gather many famous Vietnamese chefs.
As many as 45,000 tickets from ten airlines and 15,000 packaged tours at favourable prices will be sold at the mart. Vietnam Airlines alone will offer 150,000 air tickets for both domestic and international routes at special cut-down prices.
Well-prepared art shows, including mediumship songs and dances by Vietnamese artists and traditional dances by Indonesian artists, will entertain visitors at the mart.
Bình said during the 4-day mart last year, enterprises gathered VNĐ220 billion (US$9.8 million) from package tours.
Explaining the theme of the event, Bình said the association wanted to boost the number of tourists to Hà Nội.
“Hà Nội is the capital, but the number of tourists flocking to the city increased only two years ago,” he said. “The city’s leaders have made great efforts to diversify tourism products, the weekend pedestrian route around Hoàn Kiếm Lake and the Old Quarter is an example. We will try to encourage travel agencies to bring foreign visitors to Hà Nội before setting off for other localities in Việt Nam.”
Đặng Hương Giang, deputy director of Hà Nội Tourism Department said the authorities will focus on the old quarter, ancient architecture and handicraft villages as highlight products to promote tourism. – VNS