Favourable visa policy urged to draw foreign tourists to Việt Nam

May 30, 2023 - 10:06
Last year, Việt Nam welcomed more than 3.66 million foreign visitors or 73 per cent of the target. 


Foreign passengers on the Silver Muse, a Bahamas-flagged cruise ship, took cyclo tours around Nha Trang, Khánh Hòa Province, after arriving on March 5, 2023. — VNA/VNS Photo

HÀ NỘI — In a bid to bolster the tourism sector, experts are emphasising the urgent need for a favourable visa policy to entice international travellers, saying it should be given the highest priority.

Last year, Việt Nam welcomed more than 3.66 million foreign visitors or 73 per cent of the target. 

This year’s target is eight million. The number of foreign arrivals reached 3.7 million in the first four months of this year, so the tourism sector must race to meet the goal.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, together with several foreign diplomatic missions in Việt Nam, the European Chamber of Commerce, the American Chamber of Commerce in Việt Nam, the Vietnam Business Forum, the Tourism Advisory Board and the Private Economic Development Research Board (Board IV) also made proposals for a more favourable visa policy to improve the competitiveness of Việt Nam’s tourism industry.

Suggested changes in the visa policy related to the amendment and supplementation of several articles of the Law on Entry and Exit of Vietnamese Citizens and the Law on Entry, Exit, Transit and Residence of Foreigners in Việt Nam are being considered by the ongoing plenary session of the 15th-tenure National Assembly.

If approved, the new entry and visa policies will extend the temporary stay of foreigners from 15 days to 45 days and the validity of e-visas from 30 days to a maximum of 90 days, for single or multiple entries.

More countries will also be on the list for e-visas.

The sector will have about three months to popularise changes in visa policy to the European and American markets, thus attracting visitors in the upcoming tourism season starting from October.

Phạm Hà, chairman of LUX Group, suggested that in addition to the proposed changes in visa policy, Việt Nam should consider offering a golden visa or special visa with a validity of one year or five years to attract long-stay visitors, especially retirees. — VNS