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Airfares double as Tet holiday approaches

By Anh Tu, Doan Loan   October 27, 2022 | 03:37 pm PT
Airfares double as Tet holiday approaches
Aircraft are seen at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City in August 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
Air ticket prices for Vietnam’s upcoming biggest holiday Tet has doubled year-on-year as tourism demand resumed after a Covid-19 induced hiatus.

A return trip from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi from Jan. 19 to 26, when most people return to their hometown to celebrate Vietnam’s Lunar New Year, costs at least VND5.5 million ($222.51), double that of last year and the same as 2019.

Vietravel Airlines charges VND6.2 million on the route during the same period. Bamboo Airways charges VND6.9 million and Pacific Airlines, VND7.1 million.

Earlier this year, before Tet, passengers could get the same tickets for half the price at VND2.5-4 million.

Air tickets from HCMC to central and northern provinces are also at a high level.

From HCMC to Thanh Hoa Province, return tickets are priced from VND7 million at Vietjet and VND7.1 million at Vietnam Airlines.

From HCMC to Da Nang prices start from VND4.6 million and to Vinh, from VND7 million.

Some passengers are considering changing their travel plans to either later or before the high demand Tet holiday.

Minh Trang, a communications employee in HCMC, will return to Vinh four days after Lunar New Year’s Eve, as ticket prices for her family will be 50% cheaper at VND8 million.

Quang Anh, who works for a foreign company in HCMC, will request an early holiday break to travel to Bangkok and then to Hanoi, as ticket prices for both trips are lower than flying directly from HCMC to Hanoi.

The Hanoi–HCMC route is among the world’s five busiest domestic air routes.

"I will get more days off in Thailand and won’t have to queue for hours at Tan Son Nhat International Airport," Anh said.

Even with the surging prices, airlines are expecting an increase in travel demand.

Vietnam Airlines has seen bookings for the upcoming Tet, which runs from Jan. 20-26, 2023, rising 23% from Tet 2020 when Covid-19 had yet to have a major impact on Vietnam tourism.

The airline said that major bookings are on the Hanoi–HCMC route, and from HCMC to Da Nang and Hai Phong.

Bamboo Airways plans to increase its capacity by 15-20% for the upcoming holiday and could offer up to one million seats.

Vietravel Airlines said that its flights from Jan. 7 to Feb. 2 next year are 60% booked. It is working with authorities to increase the number of flights.

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