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Vietnam’s aviation industry thrives after COVID-19 pandemic

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While the international aviation industry has encountered many difficulties returning to pre-pandemic levels, the Vietnamese aviation industry has made significant efforts to overcome these challenges and become a positive example in the world.

With international demand for flights surging during the vacation season, several airports have experienced delays, cancelations, or missing baggage. 

While the aviation industry of many countries is struggling with such problems, that of Vietnam has been recognized as a ‘good example’ of managing to increase the number of flights to meet the high demand following the pandemic without major issues.

Difficulties with international travel

Instead of getting a direct flight from Finland to France as planned, Hoang Quyen and her family had an unpleasant experience because the airline changed the flight at the last minute.

Only when they got to the check-in counter at the airport were they informed that the flight would be delayed by three hours. They also had to take a flight with a stopover instead of a direct service as booked. 

So they took a flight from Helsinki-Vantaa Airport to Copenhagen in Denmark and from there another one to France.

The airline explained that they had informed their passengers about the problem by email about two hours before the departure time, and the reason was that the crew suddenly fell ill.

N.H.D., a resident of Binh Thanh District in Ho Chi Minh City, said that in the summer, when he was traveling to Europe with his family, he witnessed chaotic scenes at the airport in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Hundreds of passengers stood in long lines waiting for their turn. There was also a dense crowd at the airport entrance. “Many passengers waited in kilometer-long lines,” D. recalled.

Indeed, many passengers have complained about the chaos at some international airports, sharing videos and photos as evidence. 

It is easy to see images of passengers waiting in droves at the terminals or thousands of kilograms of luggage that could not be collected due to an overwhelming and serious shortage of employees in the aviation industry. 

These images were posted with the warning that it would be difficult to claim checked luggage when flying to Europe, so passengers should take carry-on baggage on such trips.

The airline industry lost about 2-3 million jobs during the COVID -19 pandemic, with ground handling and security services the hardest hit.

Travel demand has recovered so quickly that the international airline industry has not been able to adjust immediately. The industry has had difficulty recruiting enough staff in recent months.

A different picture of Vietnam’s airlines

In the first eight months of 2022, the 21 airports under the control of the Airports Corporation of Vietnam handled more than 66 million passengers. The daily passenger record was set on July 10, 2022. Many of Vietnam’s airports operate domestic terminals that exceed their capacity.

According to the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (ACV), the number of passengers on domestic flights has recovered so quickly that pre-pandemic levels have been exceeded. This rapid recovery puts a lot of pressure on domestic terminals, and some of the infrastructure is reaching its limit. 

At the moment, there is a pervasive shortage of staff in the aviation industry, including air traffic controllers, security officers, baggage handlers, and check-in personnel.

Despite this situation, it is impossible to hire more employees immediately. The hiring process can take 2-3 months.

With so many challenges, it would take a lot of effort for the aviation industry to maintain anything close to smooth operations, even as domestic flights accelerate and passengers flock to airports. 

In fact, Vietnam has been internationally appreciated for having a domestic market with the fastest development.

According to Nguyen Dinh Hung, general director of Saigon Ground Services JSC, said that airlines faced a big challenge during the summer. 

During peak periods, they handle 200-300 flights per day at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, compared to only 20-30 per day during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have to deploy staff from all over to help during the peak period, and fortunately we are able to handle the situation successfully,” said Hung. 

Dinh Viet Phuong, general manager of VietJet Air, praised the timely and decisive measures taken by the government and administrative authorities in reopening the tourism industry, which brought good results to the aviation industry in coping with the COVID-19 pandemic. 

According to Phuong, VietJet could resume its domestic flight routes and open new potential services thanks to more convenient entry procedures at airports. 

India is one of the countries where VietJet has opened new routes to.

The Vietnamese budget airline opened 17 routes to India from various cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang, and Phu Quoc.

VietJet’s new markets make Vietnam a popular destination for tourists from South Asia.

According to Nguyen Quoc Phuong, deputy director of ACV, given the severe staff shortage and limited infrastructure in the aviation industry, it is understandable that there will be inconveniences or problems when passenger traffic is high.

“If you take a look at European airports,” Phuong said, “you can see that the Vietnamese aviation industry has become a positive example of maintaining safe flights and stable services despite a substantial number of passengers.”

To make the industry a leading economic force that can spur other industries, it is necessary for the authorities to provide more decisive support, according to aviation industry experts. 

The experts suggested that the aviation industry should no longer be regulated in the same way as during the pandemic. In addition, the national government should offer more financial packages to help the industry, such as providing a two-percent interest package during the pandemic. 

They also suggested that the VAT tax should be reduced by 3-5 percent, which can help the industry both support passengers and curb inflation. 

In addition, the authorities are expected to abolish the special consumption tax on oil or gas, allow the aviation industry to impose a surcharge on fuel, and expand the visa waiver program to improve competitiveness.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/business/20220929/vietnam-s-aviation-industry-thrives-after-covid19-pandemic/69270.html

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330,000 visitors bring Hanoi $42.6mn on Tet

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Hanoi earned more than VND1 trillion (US$42.6 million) from 330,000 visitors in five days of the seven-day 2023 Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday, according to the city’s tourism department.

The number of visitors, calculated from January 21 to Thursday, is three-fold that of the same period last year.

That included 32,000 international visitors, most of whom came from South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, and Canada, and 300,000 domestic tourists.

The Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam (Temple of Literature – Imperial Academy) in Dong Da District welcomed 80,000 people, while the same number of visitors came to the Huong Pagoda in My Duc District.

The UNESCO-recognized Thang Long Imperial Citadel in Ba Dinh District received 19,680 visitors.

About 18,000 people visited the Co Loa relic site in Dong Anh District.

Duong Lam Village and the Son Tay ancient fortress citadel in Son Tay Town drew some 15,000 visitors, Hanoi Zoo in Ba Dinh District received 17,235 people.

The Hoa Lo Prison relic site in Hoan Kiem District, Hong Van ornamental creature village in Thuong Tin District, Bat Trang pottery village in Gia Lam District, and many temples in the capital city also recorded a sharp increase in visitors.

The city’s total tourism revenue during the five-day period is estimated at VND1 trillion.

The occupancy rate of hotel rooms reaches 40 percent during the same period, according to the Hanoi Department of Tourism, which expects the city to remain a favorite destination for tourists in the coming days, when many attractive festivals begin at famous spiritual tourist attractions.

The 2023 Tet break lasted seven days from January 20 to 26 in Vietnam.

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Hanoi earned more than VND1 trillion (US$42.6 million) from 330,000 visitors in five days of the seven-day 2023 Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday, according to the city’s tourism department.

The number of visitors, calculated from January 21 to Thursday, is three-fold that of the same period last year.

That included 32,000 international visitors, most of whom came from South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, and Canada, and 300,000 domestic tourists.

The Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam (Temple of Literature – Imperial Academy) in Dong Da District welcomed 80,000 people, while the same number of visitors came to the Huong Pagoda in My Duc District.

The UNESCO-recognized Thang Long Imperial Citadel in Ba Dinh District received 19,680 visitors.

About 18,000 people visited the Co Loa relic site in Dong Anh District.

Duong Lam Village and the Son Tay ancient fortress citadel in Son Tay Town drew some 15,000 visitors, Hanoi Zoo in Ba Dinh District received 17,235 people.

The Hoa Lo Prison relic site in Hoan Kiem District, Hong Van ornamental creature village in Thuong Tin District, Bat Trang pottery village in Gia Lam District, and many temples in the capital city also recorded a sharp increase in visitors.

The city’s total tourism revenue during the five-day period is estimated at VND1 trillion.

The occupancy rate of hotel rooms reaches 40 percent during the same period, according to the Hanoi Department of Tourism, which expects the city to remain a favorite destination for tourists in the coming days, when many attractive festivals begin at famous spiritual tourist attractions.

The 2023 Tet break lasted seven days from January 20 to 26 in Vietnam.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/business/20230127/330000-visitors-bring-hanoi-426mn-on-tet/71147.html

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Vietnamese firms secure orders to export durians to China during Tet

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Many Vietnamese enterprises have won orders to ship durians to China during this Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday after the first 100-metric-ton Vietnamese durian batch was exported to the northern neighbor via official channels in September last year.

A durian purchasing company in Binh Phuoc Province, southern Vietnam, informed that it had secured an order to export 500,000 metric tons of durians to China.

Although farms in the province fail to supply the sufficient volume, the company will collect durians from other eligible farms.

Meanwhile, Van Xuan Phat Import-Export Co. Ltd. based in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday said that the company would monthly export 1,000 metric tons of durians.

Huynh Van Dung, a trader in Hanoi, said China has a plan to buy one million Vietnamese durians, which are preferred and quickly consumed in the most populous country in the world.

According to Nguyen Dinh Tung, general director of Vina T&T Group, which specializes in exporting fruits and is among the 25 Vietnamese enterprises being issued with a packaging unit code, Vina T&T and Hong Kong’s Sunwah Group had inked a contract to export Vietnamese durians to Hong Kong.

Vietnam expects to ship 90,000 metric tons, or some 4,500 containers, of fresh durians abroad this year.

Dang Phuc Nguyen, general secretary of the Vietnam Fruit and Vegetable Association, said that although Vietnam has just exported durians to China through official channels since September 2022, the country has generated some US$350 million from durian exports.

Therefore, Nguyen forecast that durians will help earn over $1 billion in export revenue in 2023.

“Durian growing areas issued with codes are entitled to higher export prices. Durians were priced at VND80,000-100,000 [$3.4-4.3] per kilogram in the Mekong Delta ahead of Tet.

“To buy durians from these areas, enterprises must put down deposits,” Nguyen added.

China imported 821,600 metric tons of fresh durians worth over $4.2 billion in 2021, surging 42.7 and 82.4 percent, respectively, year on year.

It is the largest buyer of durians in the world. Thailand is currently the largest supplier of durians to China, accounting for a 40 percent market share.

Local experts forecast that the country’s durian exports will depend on China in the future.

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Many Vietnamese enterprises have won orders to ship durians to China during this Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday after the first 100-metric-ton Vietnamese durian batch was exported to the northern neighbor via official channels in September last year.

A durian purchasing company in Binh Phuoc Province, southern Vietnam, informed that it had secured an order to export 500,000 metric tons of durians to China.

Although farms in the province fail to supply the sufficient volume, the company will collect durians from other eligible farms.

Meanwhile, Van Xuan Phat Import-Export Co. Ltd. based in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday said that the company would monthly export 1,000 metric tons of durians.

Huynh Van Dung, a trader in Hanoi, said China has a plan to buy one million Vietnamese durians, which are preferred and quickly consumed in the most populous country in the world.

According to Nguyen Dinh Tung, general director of Vina T&T Group, which specializes in exporting fruits and is among the 25 Vietnamese enterprises being issued with a packaging unit code, Vina T&T and Hong Kong’s Sunwah Group had inked a contract to export Vietnamese durians to Hong Kong.

Vietnam expects to ship 90,000 metric tons, or some 4,500 containers, of fresh durians abroad this year.

Dang Phuc Nguyen, general secretary of the Vietnam Fruit and Vegetable Association, said that although Vietnam has just exported durians to China through official channels since September 2022, the country has generated some US$350 million from durian exports.

Therefore, Nguyen forecast that durians will help earn over $1 billion in export revenue in 2023.

“Durian growing areas issued with codes are entitled to higher export prices. Durians were priced at VND80,000-100,000 [$3.4-4.3] per kilogram in the Mekong Delta ahead of Tet.

“To buy durians from these areas, enterprises must put down deposits,” Nguyen added.

China imported 821,600 metric tons of fresh durians worth over $4.2 billion in 2021, surging 42.7 and 82.4 percent, respectively, year on year.

It is the largest buyer of durians in the world. Thailand is currently the largest supplier of durians to China, accounting for a 40 percent market share.

Local experts forecast that the country’s durian exports will depend on China in the future.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/business/20230126/vietnamese-firms-secure-orders-to-export-durians-to-china-during-tet/71137.html

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Int’l tourists to Vietnam’s Phu Quoc during Tet surge

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Phu Quoc Island off Kien Giang Province, southern Vietnam, welcomed some 70,000 tourist arrivals between January 20 and 24, or the 29th day of the 12th month of the last lunar year and the third day of this lunar year, including 4,400 international visitors, surging 64 percent year on year, according to the provincial Department of Tourism.

The city earned VND30.9 billion (US$1.3 million) in tourism revenue in the period.

Meanwhile, the entire Kien Giang Province served 134,160 tourist arrivals, with 4,800 of them being foreigners, soaring 75.9 percent over the same period last year.

On Wednesday, flights, ferries and high-speed vessels from Rach Gia and Ha Tien Cities to Phu Quoc were operated as normal.

Due to the high number of tourists to the island city, the occupancy rate of lodging facilities in the city reached some 85 percent on average.

Huynh Quang Hung, chairman of the People’s Committee of Phu Quoc City, said the city has advantages of beautiful beaches and the favorable climate.

The number of international visitors to Phu Quoc was forecast to surge this year if some air routes connecting the city with China and Russia are reopened.

“Tourists have come to Phu Quoc in droves this Tet. Lodging facilities in the city have reported an occupancy rate of 80, even 90 percent.

“Tourism service providers in Phu Quoc have launched promotion programs to attract tourists.

“In 2023, Hon (Kiss) Bridge in An Thoi Ward will be introduced to attract more local and foreign guests to Phu Quoc,” Hung added.

Earlier, Kien Giang Province expected to welcome more than 400 domestic and international flights to Phu Quoc and Rach Gia cities and over 230 ferry and vessel services to islands off the province during eight-day Lunar New Year holiday, from the 29th day of the 12th month of the last lunar year to the sixth day of this lunar year.

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Phu Quoc Island off Kien Giang Province, southern Vietnam, welcomed some 70,000 tourist arrivals between January 20 and 24, or the 29th day of the 12th month of the last lunar year and the third day of this lunar year, including 4,400 international visitors, surging 64 percent year on year, according to the provincial Department of Tourism.

The city earned VND30.9 billion (US$1.3 million) in tourism revenue in the period.

Meanwhile, the entire Kien Giang Province served 134,160 tourist arrivals, with 4,800 of them being foreigners, soaring 75.9 percent over the same period last year.

On Wednesday, flights, ferries and high-speed vessels from Rach Gia and Ha Tien Cities to Phu Quoc were operated as normal.

Due to the high number of tourists to the island city, the occupancy rate of lodging facilities in the city reached some 85 percent on average.

Huynh Quang Hung, chairman of the People’s Committee of Phu Quoc City, said the city has advantages of beautiful beaches and the favorable climate.

The number of international visitors to Phu Quoc was forecast to surge this year if some air routes connecting the city with China and Russia are reopened.

“Tourists have come to Phu Quoc in droves this Tet. Lodging facilities in the city have reported an occupancy rate of 80, even 90 percent.

“Tourism service providers in Phu Quoc have launched promotion programs to attract tourists.

“In 2023, Hon (Kiss) Bridge in An Thoi Ward will be introduced to attract more local and foreign guests to Phu Quoc,” Hung added.

Earlier, Kien Giang Province expected to welcome more than 400 domestic and international flights to Phu Quoc and Rach Gia cities and over 230 ferry and vessel services to islands off the province during eight-day Lunar New Year holiday, from the 29th day of the 12th month of the last lunar year to the sixth day of this lunar year.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/business/20230126/intl-tourists-to-vietnams-phu-quoc-during-tet-surge/71124.html

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