Vietnam Travel in Brief 29/12
Japanese tourists seek better tourism
The director of the Japanese-language guidebook Sketch has called on Vietnam’s tourism sector to conduct more promotion campaigns in Japan. Akihito Nakayasu said most of the 1,038 Japanese respondents to a poll by Sketch said they required up-to-date information about Vietnam through books about Vietnam in Japan. More than half of the participants were looking for updates of resorts and hotels in Vietnam. Many want lower-priced package tours to attractions, but this was nearly impossible because of the severe shortage of hotel rooms in the country, Nakayasu said.
Luxury cars for Ho Chi Minh-Nha Trang train
Four high-quality cars have been added to the train route between Ho Chi Minh City and Nha Trang, according to the Railway Transport and Trade Joint-Stock Co. of Vietnam Railway Corp. The classic Golden Train cars, each having six premium four-passenger cabins and one one-passenger business cabin, will be connected to two trains, the SN1 and SN2. The spacious cabins have an air conditioner, TV and telephone. The trains will depart from Ho Chi Minh City at 7.40pm and from Nha Trang at 6:10 pm. The travelling time between the two cities is around nine hours. Ticket price ranges from VND440,000 to VND890,000 per person.
Caravan tour to Malaysia for Vietnam Tet
The Ho Chi Minh City-based Viking Travel and Media Company is arranging a 10-day caravan tour for a group of 25 cars from Ho Chi Minh City to Malaysia for the upcoming Lunar New Year festival or Vietanm Tet. The tour will start in Ho Chi Minh City on February 8 or second day of the Lunar New Year, and head to Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia, covering the total road length of nearly 4,900km, according to Tran Xuan Hung, director of Viking Travel.
Hung said the caravan tour would be escorted by Thai police upon arriving in Thailand, and would join a welcoming party hosted by tourism agencies in provinces in southern Thailand. He added that Malaysia’s Ministry of Tourism would issue certificates to each member of the group to admit them into the country. Viking on Tuesday saw off a Malaysian caravan group of 17 cars, which have helped Viking arrange inbound tours for three other caravan groups from Malaysia next year.
2007 boom year for local MICE market
This year saw a dramatic increase in the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) market. Saigontourist won several big MICE contracts in October and November. In December alone, the company conducted 40 tours and served 5,655 visitors, among which there was a group of 2,700.
Earlier this year Saigontourist organised a Southeast Asian tour on a 5-star cruise ship for 800 professors and doctors of otolaryngoloists. A multinational group comprising 650 Europeans, Americans and Australians were received at the Caravelle and Sheraton hotels. A tour for Japanese athletes who will participate in a marathon in Da Lat will be conducted in the near future.
Mui Ne Vietnam attracts Russian tourists
Russians accounted for 12% of the estimated 150,000 international visitors to Mui Ne in Binh Thuan this year, just behind German tourists who represented 12.5%, according to figures from the province’ tourism authority. Ngo Minh Chinh, director of Binh Thuan Tourism Department, attributed the sharp increase in Russian tourists to the province’s two promotion campaigns in Russia and the local resorts’ efforts to advertise their products in Russia earlier this year. Russian companies have invested in five projects in Binh Thuan in the fields of trade, resort and tourism.
Palace Sai Gon Hotel gets 4-star rating
The National Adminsitration of Tourism has given a 4-star rating to Palace Sai Gon Hotel at 56-66 Nguyen Hue Street, in Ho Chi Minh City’s District 1. Opened in 1968, the 144-room Palace Sai Gon Hotel is one of the hotels run by the Bong Sen Joint-Stock Co. In 2007, the company invested more than US$1.4mil to upgrade the hotel’s facilities. As a result, the hotel received some 21,500 foreign and local guests in 2007. Most guests came from France and the US.
(Source: Viet Nam News)