Phu Quoc seeks solutions to lure back tourists

By Duong Dong   October 15, 2023 | 05:00 am PT
Phu Quoc seeks solutions to lure back tourists
Beachgoers on Phu Quoc Island, April 2023. Photo by Truong Phu Quoc
Officials and businesses are looking for ways to save Phu Quoc's tourism, with the number of visitors dipping sharply and many firms suffering from losses.

At a meeting between the authorities of Kien Giang Province, home to the city island of Phu Quoc, and tourism businesses on Saturday, it was stated that the high air ticket prices to the island are one of the reasons for the drop in the number of visitors.

Le Thi Hai Chau, general secretary of the Phu Quoc Tourism Development Investment Association, said many tourism businesses have reported losses.

For the National Day holiday on September 1-4, the island received more than 19,000 visitors, down nearly 40% over the same period last year, while the room occupation rate only reached about 27%.

Chau recommended that airlines need to stabilize airfare prices, while tourism businesses will have to adjust their service and room rates.

A representative of Vietjet Air said for the first post-pandemic year of 2022, flights to Phu Quoc bounced back with about 40 flights per day and up to 150 flights at its peak. 

However, this year, the airline has operated just 26 flights per day on average, which has affected revenues and pushed airfares up. The representative said tourism businesses need to review the products they are providing as well as service prices to retain customers.

"We are willing to work with tourism businesses and local authorities to stimulate demand for visiting the island," the representative said.

Phu Quoc chairman Huynh Quang Hung said airlines should come up with more reasonable ticket prices that could ensure benefits for all parties.

"Regarding food safety, environment, social security and order, the local authorities will take full responsibility so that tourists can feel secure when visiting the island," he said.

Concluding the meeting, Lam Minh Thanh, Chairman of Kien Giang Province, said state agencies must work with airlines and travel agencies to discuss specific solutions to boost tourism demand for the island.

Phu Quoc City has nearly 30,000 accommodation rooms and 800 tourism service establishments.

According to official statistics, about 60% of visitors come to Phu Quoc by air.

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