Khanh Hoa tourism worries about heavy reliance on Chinese market

Chinese tourists have made up half of international arrivals to Nha Trang City in the central province of Khanh Hoa this year, forcing the local government to find ways to diversify its source markets, instead of heavily depending on China.

Chinese tourists have made up half of international arrivals to Nha Trang City in the central province of Khanh Hoa this year - Photo Zing

International tourist arrivals to the province last year are projected at around 1.1 million, with 600,000 of them coming from China, four times higher than in 2015. Meanwhile, arrivals from traditional visitor-generating markets such as Europe and North America dipped.

It is time for the provincial government to recover the traditional markets and look for new markets, Tran Viet Trung, director of Khanh Hoa Province’s Department of Tourism, told the Daily.

Trung underlined the need to avoid reliance on a single market, saying the province already experienced a sharp fall in tourism revenue triggered by an unexpected slump in Russian and Chinese tourist arrivals in 2014.

The province plans to join hands with air carriers to launch flights to Germany, and resume cooperation with travel firms specializing in Japanese and South Korean markets.

Nguyen Van Thanh, vice chairman of the Nha Trang - Khanh Hoa Tourism Association, said Vietnam Airlines plans to launch service between Nha Trang and Germany in April 2017. The general managers of 15 hotels are expected to work with a new committee responsible for luring tourists from key foreign source markets like Europe and Northeast Asia. This committee is expected to come out this quarter.

Japanese tourists came to Nha Trang in droves around 10 years ago but Japanese arrivals there have declined of late. The province said it would cooperate with tourism companies specializing in the Japanese market to bring Japanese guests back, Thanh said.

Last year saw more than 10 million foreigners visiting Vietnam, including nearly 2.7 million Chinese who came on chartered flights to Khanh Hoa, Danang, Phu Quoc and Dalat among others.

Chinese tour operators often choose to sign huge package contracts with hotels in Khanh Hoa to enjoy low room rates. Some hotel owners however have been seeking to diversify customers.

Nguyen Anh Vu, director of Green World Nha Trang Hotel, said his hotel sets aside around 40% of 228 rooms for the Chinese market.

“Some Chinese partners have asked for more rooms but we have declined because we want to serve clients from other markets. It is risky to rely heavily on a single market where partners often demand steep discounts,” he said.

Source SGT