The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), together with the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board (TAB) and the Swiss Sustainable Tourism Programme (SSTP) have joined hands to launch a new ‘Green Travel’ section on the national tourism website: www.vietnam.travel/sustainability.

Users visiting the section will find articles dedicated to best practices for responsible travellers, guides on following Vietnamese customs and local etiquette, and pieces highlighting the country’s lesser-known destinations.

To make it easier for travellers to find sustainable tourism providers in Vietnam, the webpage features a catalog of reputable businesses across the country. Visitors can look up outstanding tours that are educational, ethical, as well as eco-friendly; find sustainable accommodations among lodges, homestays, and hotels; and discover souvenirs such as crafts, textiles, and stationery brands that preserve Vietnamese culture and support local communities.

The section also offers hand-drawn infographics on sustainable travel in Vietnam, and in-depth stories for those interested in Vietnam’s ethnic minorities and traditional craft villages.

To make the experience actionable for travellers planning trips, a collection of leading tour operators offering sustainable experiences is also included.

In order to ensure the listed companies are standout examples of practicing socially and environmentally sustainable tourism, TAB sought the expertise of SSTP consultants to research the contents of the Green Travel section in accordance with the sustainability criteria established by SSTP for the tourism industry in Vietnam.

Tourism officials said the Green Travel section represents progress, and is a first step in Vietnam’s endeavours to support sustainable travel businesses and assist responsible travellers coming to Vietnam.

Over the coming months, the national tourism website will make debut videos showcasing the country’s best sustainable tourism assets and outstanding experiences, and will host giveaways for sustainable Vietnamese products and holidays on its official social media channels, found under the handle: @vietnamtourismboard.

Already social media users can show their support for responsible travel by searching in GIFs for the keyword ‘greenvietnam’, and posting the stickers to their stories on Instagram and Facebook.

Vietnam recently also launched a ‘Visit Vietnam from Home’ page, encouraging travellers to explore the country even while the borders are closed. The page delivers virtual travel experiences such as 360-degree tours, local recipes, colouring pages, and immersive videos.

Tourists prefer short-distance trips for National Day holiday

Tourists are booking mostly short-distance trips and brief stays near their homes for the upcoming National Day (September 2) holiday.

 

A representative of Vietravel said that all group tours stopped after the second COVID-19 outbreak in late July.

The company is now focusing on services for family groups such as car rentals, hotel reservations and tickets at tourist spots on Phu Quoc Island and Vung Tau City for the upcoming holiday.

Luxury staycations at hotels such as Rex, Lotte Saigon, and Vinpearl Luxury in HCM City are another alternative chosen by tourists, the representative said.

A staycation package at upscale hotels with discounted prices starting from VNĐ1.3 - 3.4 million (US$56-146) for two guests are especially suitable for locals in HCM City and neighbouring localities.  

TST Tourist is focusing on one or two-day tours by road with prices starting from VNĐ700,000-1.8 million ($30-77) a person.

Nguyen Minh Man of TST Tourist’s marketing department said the company has adopted COVID-19 preventive measures to ensure safety for tourists.

Fewer than 30 passengers are being grouped in a 45-seat bus, and fewer than 20 guests in a 30-seat bus, to maintain safe distancing, Mẫn said.

Struggling travel operators are striving to organise tours for the holiday in an attempt to maintain operations and create work for staff, according to the HCM City Department of Tourism.

Travel agencies said that they plan to offer stimulus tour packages for the autumn season and year-end holidays if the outbreak is under control in September.

During the upcoming holiday, the Sai Gon Railway Transport Joint Stock Company will run additional trains on routes from HCM City to Nha Trang. The company has committed to implement preventive measures to ensure safety for passengers and staff.

The central coastal province of Khanh Hoa is expected to welcome small groups and families during the National Day holiday, said Hoang Van Vinh, chairman of Khanh Hoa Province Tourism Association./.VNA/VNS

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