Hanoi (VNA) – The tourism industry saw a strong start in 2018 as the international tourist arrivals to Vietnam reached over 4.2 million people in the first quarter of the year, an increase of 30.9 percent year on year.
According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), Vietnam welcomed more than 1.3 million visitors in March, the third consecutive month the foreign tourist arrivals exceeded a million.
About 3.1 million foreigners came from Asian countries in the first three months, up 37.6 percent year on year. Visitors from the Republic of Korea showed the highest growth of 69.2 percent, followed by those from China (42.9 percent).
Tourists from Europe rose by 15.4 percent from the same period last year with significant growths reported in those from Russia (15.8 percent), the UK (14.4 percent), Sweden (20.6 percent) and France (12 percent). Travellers from America increased by 11.5 percent year on year.
The country earned more than 10 trillion VND (440 million USD) from tourism, up 30.3 percent year on year with Ho Chi Minh City posting the strongest surge of 32.3 percent.
Vietnam aims to serve between 15 – 17 million foreigners and 78 million domestic travellers this year, with total revenue expected to hit 620 trillion VND (27.28 billion USD), up 21.35 percent year on year.
The continuous expansion of the tourism can be partly attributed to Vietnam’s active tourism promotion overseas since the beginning of the year.
Earlier this month, the country took part in the 26th Moscow International Travel and Tourism Exhibition (MITT) in Russia, one of the world’s five largest travel fairs held annually since 1994. This event attracted over 1,900 businesses and representatives from 192 countries and territories.
Russia ranks sixth in the number of tourists to Vietnam. In 2017, Vietnam received some 574,000 Russian visitors, up 32.3 percent from 2016, who mostly came to central and southern destinations like Nha Trang, Phan Thiet and Phu Quoc. The country expects to welcome 1 million Russian guests by 2020.
On March 28, the national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines started deploying Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft for the Hanoi-Moscow air route in an effort to meet increasing demand of Russian travellers.-VNA
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