Several airlines from China have opened direct scheduled flights to HCMC to cash in on the rising number of Chinese travelers to the city.
Late last month, airlines such as Xiamen, China Southern and China Eastern increased their flight frequencies to HCMC, especially on the Shanghai-HCMC route with several daily flights. Visitors are also coming in droves from such cities as Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
Tour operators in HCMC said the opening of more air routes signaled the stable and increasing inflow of Chinese visitors, after a period of fewer arrivals from this major source market.
“We used to face a period of gloomy business from mid-2014 when Chinese arrivals fell. The situation did recover a little after that but the picture is much brighter now,” said a tour operator that often organizes tours taking in places of interest in HCMC and the Mekong Delta for Chinese visitors.
Chinese visitors also prefer coastal destinations like Vung Tau and Phan Thiet, the source said, adding Chinese partners will cover aviation services for guests while Vietnamese tour operators arrange ground services or visa procedures.
Tu Quy Thanh, director of Lien Bang Travelink, said the number of Chinese visitors is rising quickly towards the end of the year, which will likely help raise the growth rate of arrivals from this market to 60% for the whole year.
Arrivals from China currently account for some 23% of Vietnam’s inbound travel market. Destinations in central Vietnam like Danang and Nha Trang are currently favorite sites for Chinese visitors.