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|Non-cash payments bring new hope to tourism in Vietnam|
Cashless payments have been identified as the inevitable trend in Vietnam as a result of several key government decisions. The Prime Minister’s Directive 22, issued in May, aims to promote a clear transition towards modernised payment methods, contributing to a reduction in the rate of cash usage.
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to a significant shift in consumer behaviour in favour of e-commerce platforms. New travel services such as booking applications and online travel agencies have seen a positive uptick.
According to a survey conducted by the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board in May, the prolonged social distancing period has led to a sharp increase in the adoption of online services, which has had a sizable impact on the extent to which consumers book hotels and tours online. According to the survey, 44.2 per cent of respondents answered that they had booked travel services via online platforms and the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board believes this trend will continue.
According to Visa’s research, being able to travel locally after the pandemic was one of the top five most-anticipated consumer activities, with 30 per cent of respondents stating that they looked forward to this change. In addition, 85 per cent of consumers have started using new payment methods such as contactless payments and will continue to maintain this habit in the future. The survey revealed that many consumers are optimistic about the post-pandemic situation, with 53 per cent believing that the economy will recover quickly when the pandemic eases. On this premise, cashless payments are likely to be enhanced in future.
In addition to this, the trend in online shopping habits has been reinforced by figures collected in late April, with 53 per cent of Vietnamese consumers affirming that they would continue to purchase products and services that they started to buy online during the crisis, even after the global pandemic has subsided. Interestingly, one of the key drivers for shopping online was discount incentives, with up to 80 per cent of Vietnamese consumers being motivated by regular online promotions from retailers.
Visa has implemented many programmes to encourage the adoption of cashless payments in several key areas, including co-operating with a host of merchants on Cashless Day 2020 in June. To name just one of the many promotions being issued for Visa cardholders, discounts are being applied to purchases of flight and hotel booking services on Agoda when using a Visa card, including 20 per cent off on June 6 and 10 per cent on other days, valid until September 30.
Visa country manager for Vietnam and Laos, Dang Tuyet Dung, said “By sharing insights on visitors’ spending behaviours throughout their journeys in Vietnam, we hope to assist the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board in developing an even more targeted approach to growing a sustainable tourism industry. In addition, Visa remains committed to disseminating safe and convenient payment methods across travel services, thus enhancing visitor experience and contributing to the development of one of the key economic sectors of the country.”