Many foreign travel firms come to seek local partners

Many foreign travel firms come to seek local partners

Dao Loan

A foreign visitor talks to a staffer of a domestic travel company at the International Tourism Expo HCMC (ITE HCMC) on September 7 – PHOTO: DAO LOAN

HCMC – International travel companies have come to Vietnam in droves to attend the 2017 International Travel Expo in HCMC (ITE HCMC 2017) and search for Vietnamese partners to plan new destinations in Vietnam for their customers and develop tourist exchange programs.

Local firms said a large number of foreign tour operators are showing up at the ongoing event. Travel companies from Indonesia, Myanmar, Taiwan and Nepal are exploring the possibility of tying up with travel firms here in the nation to boost travels between Vietnam and these foreign destinations.

Vo Viet Hoa at Saigontourist, Vietnam’s leading tour operator, said he had met 50 partners on the first day of the expo. Most Asian firms want to exchange customers while German partners want to offer golf tours for German and European guests, Hoa said. Regional partners expressed interest in short tours, such as those connecting HCMC and Phnom Penh or Siem Riep in Cambodia.

Hoa told the Daily that these tours hold high potential as convenient transport services and good English-speaking tour guides are available.

Foreign companies are keen to learn about local tourism products and services and build links with Vietnamese partners so that they can send their customers directly to Vietnam, instead of having to go through agencies.

Jennifer Hibbitt from Flight Center Travel Group said she is in Vietnam to inspect tourism services. Her company will introduce tours of HCMC and other destinations in Vietnam to its customers soon, she added.

Local hotel managers have also set up a lot of appointments with foreign partners during the expo.

Do Nguyen Quoc, sales director of Rex Hotel, said he met 30 partners from America and Europe on September 7 and that they paid attention to products with competitive prices. Rex Hotel will work with 110 partners at the expo, nearly double last year, Quoc added.

ITE HCMC is annually held by the HCMC Department of Tourism, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, Vietnam National Trade Fair and Advertising Company (Vinexad), and Informa Exhibitions Co Ltd, and endorsed by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the HCMC government.

The event this year, themed “Your Gateway to Tourism in Asia,” is attended by nearly 300 international travel companies. It features 300 booths of travel companies and tourism promotion agencies.

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