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|Air New Zealand says it benefits greatly from stronger bonds between the two countries|
New Zealand and Vietnam are on now their way to become close partners in tourism, education, and business, which is believed to boost the growth of air travel. Latest statistics from Vietnam National Association of Tourism show that more Vietnamese are travelling to New Zealand and vice versa.
Specifically, in the first five months of 2018, the number of Kiwi visitors to Vietnam was 18,181, growing by 105.4 per cent against the same period last year. On the other hand, about 29,340 Vietnamese nationals have travelled to New Zealand in 2018 so far.
The Oceanic country currently hosts 2,200 Vietnamese students of tertiary education, from short-term diplomas to PhD courses.
On the economic front, New Zealand is boosting its partnership with Vietnam, aiming to reach $1.7 billion in bilateral trade turnover by 2020. Both countries are members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which covers 13.5 per cent of the global GDP.
The airline industry is betting hard on these developments, as more Kiwis and Vietnamese will fly between the two countries for leisure, studying, and trade. For example, Air New Zealand has just announced its third season of non-stop flights between Ho Chi Minh City and Auckland.
In particular, from June 23 to October 23, 2018, Air New Zealand will operate two services a week from Auckland to Ho Chi Minh City on Tuesdays and Saturdays, using its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. Besides, Air New Zealand also partnered up with Singapore Airlines to offer passengers alternative travel options, transiting at Singapore to New Zealand.
“Vietnam is an emerging market with significant growth predicted in the near future, and this direct link has been proven to boost tourism, education, and business links between the countries over past two years,” noted Jenni Martin, head of South and Southeast Asia at Air New Zealand.
The representative said the airline would focus on leveraging the region’s potential to encourage year-round trips through both direct and indirect flights. To promote its third season, Air New Zealand also partnered with H’Hen Nie, the winner of Miss Universe Vietnam 2017.
Direct flights from Ho Chi Minh City to Auckland take eleven hours, with economy seats going from VND15.538 ($675).
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