|Many travel companies in the country plan to increase the price of local tours by 15–20 per cent, following the rise in prices of many tourist services such as transport and accommodations.Pham Duc Hoa, deputy manager of the HCM City-based Saigontourist, said prices for his company’s local tours would increase by 15–20 per cent in April.
According to many travel companies, the price of transport services has been soaring.
For example, the price for hiring a 45-seat coach from HCM City to Phan Thiet City for two days rose to VND7-VND7.5 million (US$350-$375), up from VND5-VND5.5 million ($250-$275) before the Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday.
The prices of meals and accommodations have also gone up by 15–20 per cent.
However, many travel companies are trying to maintain prices to be more competitive and encourage people to travel.
Cho Lon Travel Company said it would work with tourist service providers to negotiate prices on meals, transport and accommodations.
For some tour contracts signed in advance at former prices, which will depart in April and May, travel companies will have to face a loss.
According to the United Nation World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), the Asia-Pacific region has recovered from the global financial crisis and led the world in tourism growth in recent years.
In 2010, Viet Nam’s tourism sector posted a growth of 30 per cent in international tourists.
The country welcomed 5 million international tourists and 28 million local tourists last year.
With this growth, the Viet Nam tourism sector expects to welcome about 5.3 million foreign tourists and 30 million local tourists this year with total revenue of VND11 trillion ($523 million).
Tran The Dung, deputy director of The He Tre (Young Generation) Travel Company, said during the last two years, the national carrier Vietnam Airlines had offered many inexpensive tickets for travel businesses that participated in a consumption-stimulus programme, which helped attract a large amount of tourists.
Though facing some difficulties at the beginning of the programme, many travel businesses last year co-operated with the airline to offer cheap tours with prices 30-35 per cent lower than market prices.
Travel firms have welcomed a total of 33,000 local tourists with cheap tours through tourism promotions.
In addition, the airline has agreed to continue another programme to stimulate local tourism this year.
It will introduce a programme to offer cheap tickets for travel businesses that participate in the stimulus programme later this month.
The airline will also operate more flights and offer more promotions for flights to Phu Yen Province and south-central provinces where there will be many cultural and tourist events for the tourism year festival to be held in the province.
Source : VNS