As a result, thetotal number of foreign arrivals during the first six months of the yearexceeded 3.54 million, a year-on-year increase of 2.6 percent.
More than 2.8 million arrived by air, up 0.8 percent year on year,while over 120,000 arrived by sea (up 2.7 percent) and 561,000 by land(up 12.5 percent).
Over 2.16 million visitors cameto the country as tourists, accounting for 61 percent of total visitors,followed by business travellers and those who visited relatives.
Tourists from Russia saw a 58 percent rise in number, followed bythose from Thailand (24 percent), Indonesia (21.5 percent) andmainland China (21 percent).
Despite economicdifficulties, the administration remained optimistic that the tourismmarket would recover in the upcoming months.
The number of visitors continued to increase in spite of a 1.4 percent fall in the first five months of the year.
The domestic tourism industry is working with foreign agencies tocreate new tours and routes to attract more foreign tourists, accordingto the Vietnam Administration of Tourism.
The sectorexpects to receive about 7.2 million foreign visitors this year, anincrease of 5.15 percent, and to serve about 35 million domestictourists (a surge of 7.69 percent).
Foreign visitorsspent an average of nine days in Vietnam . They also poured arelatively big amount of foreign currency into the economy, spending anaverage of 1,002 USD per arrival last year, much higher than in 2005,when the average spending was 661 USD per arrival.
Tourists paid the most for accommodations, which accounted for 27percent of total spending, followed by food (20 percent), travel (17percent) and goods purchasing (15 percent).
Touristsfrom Japan spent the most: 167 USD per day per person. They werefollowed by those from Indonesia , Malaysia , Singapore , theRepublic of Korea , Thailand and the Philippines .
The country earned 6.83 billion USD last year from tourist spending,equivalent to 70 percent of overseas national currency exchange.-VNA