Hanoi, HCMC rise in global city destination list

By Hoang Phong   December 19, 2022 | 03:24 pm PT
Hanoi, HCMC rise in global city destination list
Me Linh Square in HCMC downtown, May 2020. Photo by Tran Ngoc Dung
Vietnam's two biggest cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, have made substantial improvements in this year's global ranking of the 100 best city destinations after the country fully reopened to international tourism.

The southern metropolis jumped by 11 places from last year to 79th while the capital city of Hanoi rose six spots to 88th, in the 2022 Top 100 City Destinations ranking compiled by British market research firm Euromonitor International.

To compile the index, the firm researched 100 cities worldwide across six main categories: tourism performance, economic and business performance, tourism policy and attractiveness, tourism infrastructure, health and safety and sustainability.

For the second year in a row, Paris was named the world's most attractive tourism destination, followed by Dubai and Amsterdam.

The rest of the top 10 were Madrid, Rome, London, Munich, Berlin, Barcelona and New York.

Several other Asian cities did better than Vietnam's two biggest cities in this index, with Singapore (15th) topping the region, followed by Tokyo (20th), Seoul (26th), Shanghai (31st), Bangkok (39th), and Taipei (48th),

"2022 has seen the removal of mandatory quarantine for inbound arrivals and abolishment of mandatory PCR tests across many regions, with these easing at a slower pace in Asia," Euromonitor International said in a report. "This has resulted in dramatic rises in inbound arrivals across cities worldwide."

"Asia is the region to watch in 2023 as the return of international travel, both inbound and outbound, is sure to shake up the rankings," Euromonitor reported.

Vietnam reopened its borders on March 15 and was one of the first Southeast Asian countries to fully reopen to international tourism without Covid-19 restrictions.

The number of foreign visitors in the first 11 months of the year was a modest 2.95 million due partly to stricter visa requirements.

In the year before the pandemic began, 2019, Vietnam received 18 million foreign visitors.

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