Vietnam's international tourist number in Q1 beats pre-pandemic levels

By Hoang Phong    March 28, 2024 | 08:16 pm PT
Vietnam's international tourist number in Q1 beats pre-pandemic levels
Bill Gates (2nd, L) and his girlfriend Paula Hurd are accompanied by a nun and tea artiste Hoang Anh Suong (R) for a tea meditation session on Ban Co mountain peak in Da Nang during their trip to the central city on March 6, 2024. Photo courtesy of Hoang Anh Suong's Facebook page
The number of foreign tourists to Vietnam in the first quarter of this year reached 4.6 million, up 3.2% against pre-pandemic levels in 2019 as the country speeds up visa relaxation policies.

The January-March figure grew by 72% against the same period of last year and reached 25% of this year’s target of 18 million foreign arrivals, according to a report from the General Statistics Office.

South Korea continued to be Vietnam's largest source of tourists, with 1.23 million arrivals, followed by mainland China (889,000), Taiwan (299,000) and the U.S. (232,129).

Japan remained the fifth largest source with 179,000, followed by Malaysia (143,000).

Australia now becomes the seventh biggest tourist sender for Vietnam’s inbound tourism with 132,000 arrivals. Last year, it rounded off the top 10.

With 118,000 arrivals, Thailand ranked eighth, followed by India (116,000) and Cambodia (113,000).

According to GSO, the strong tourism recovery was thanks to the effectiveness of favorable visa policies and tourism promotion programs.

Vietnam now grants tourist visas for up to three months to citizens of all countries and territories.

The government has instructed immigration agencies to consider waiving visas for visits of six to 12 months for people coming from wealthy countries as well as expand the list of countries whose citizens are unilaterally exempted from visas from the current 13.

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