The Hanoi National Tourism Year with the 1,000th anniversary of Thang Long-Hanoi as the key program have been advertised animatedly, attracting the attention of both Vietnamese and foreign tourists.
It is clear to see that there are a few of Vietnam travel agents particularly those located in Hanoi have attended to promote new tours relating to the event. If any, the tours have not been invested carefully. Right from the start, some agents such as Khanh Sinh Tour, Opentour, Sky tour Redtour have not been interested in such tours. Other like the Hanoi Tourism General Company, Golden tour have built tours, but the efficiency seemed to be little. Even the leading tourism companies such as Saigon Tourist, Vietravel, Ben Thanh tourist, Fiditour have promoted tours from late last year and continuously changed contents of tours to be suitable to each different times, added more tourism products as well as promotion services. However, the results are not expected. According to an initial report, Saigon tourist served 8,500 Vietnamese and foreign tourists and 1,000 youth member under the IKO Youth Travel program while Vietravel is estimated to attract only 1,000. Currently, the number of visitors having registered tours accounts for 40 per cent.
According to travel companies, the millennium program is prone to culture and foreign affairs rather than to tourism, resulting the low efficiency.
Vu Hoang An, director of the Cau Vong (Rainbow) tourism company, said although amid the 1,000th anniversary of Thang Long-Hanoi, travel agent located in the capital city have no numerous opportunities. The millennium program mainly welcomes visitors from other regions while Hanoi-based companies are not specialized in receiving tours. As a result, local travel agents must organize all-in tours, failing to setup a liaison. In addition, the national programs under the millennium have been organized incomprehensively and lack service products, information. Many tourists, thus, accept to give travel agents full powers to organize tour.
Nguyen Cong Hoan, vice director of the Redtour Hanoi travel agent center, said many tourists who have registered tours of the agent will meet difficulty in sightseeing directly the great festival’s programs. Because of the large number of international arrivals to Hanoi on the occasion, the city’s police have proposed to ban all passenger cars to enter the inner city on the date of Oct 10. Thus, tourist will have to use public vehicle to enter the city center and they can follow the great festival via 20 LED screen put at parks and public places. These will influence remarkably sightseeing plan of tourists, Hoan said.
Some other tourism programs, meanwhile, are held too far from the center. For example, the Thang Long-Hanoi international tourism festival 2010 is organized at the Thien Duong Bao Son in suburb and is expected to attract 30,000 visitors per day and night. Although this place has large and convenient spaces for displaying products, but it is too far from center Hanoi.
The Thang Long-Hanoi millennium is a cultural, political and social event of the country and Vietnamese people as well of international friends who have fondness for the capital city. The city’s department of tourism should have built a specific roadway in advertising and mobilizing the participation of travel agents, by doing that the great festival would not only become a cultural and political event but also bring in the economic efficiency and contribute to the country’s tourism development.