Domestic tourism demand hit hard by Covid travel restrictions

By Nguyen Quy   August 9, 2021 | 12:22 am PT
Domestic tourism demand hit hard by Covid travel restrictions
Nguyen Hue pedestrian street in downtown HCMC is empty amid social distancing order, July 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Ngo Tran Hai An.
With most flights suspended and travel restrictions imposed due to the ongoing Covid outbreak, domestic tourism demand has decreased sharply since May.

Online searches for tourist accommodation and flights in Vietnam between May 1 and Aug. 2 fell from 50 to 88 percent against the same period last year, according to data from Google’s Destination Insights.

The drop in domestic tourism demand is ascribed to the new wave of Covid that hit the country in late April.

Statistics from the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism showed the number of domestic tourists had reached nine million in April, decreasing to 3.5 million a month later, and even 500,000 last month.

Domestic flight searches also plunged by up to 85 percent during May-August against the same period last year as most domestic flights connecting Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi with famous tourist hotspots have been suspended amid strict social distancing orders to contain coronavirus spread.

According to Google’s Destination Insights, the 10 most searched domestic tourist destinations were HCMC, Da Lat, Phu Quoc, Hanoi, Da Nang, Nha Trang, Vung Tau, Quy Nhon, Phan Thiet and Hue.

Though now might have been the peak summer travel season, over 20 localities, including HCMC and Hanoi and many beach towns, have been put under lockdown amid the worsening Covid situation.

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