From February 15, Vietnam will remove all coronavirus-related restrictions on international passenger flights arriving in the country.
The move was heralded as the start of a new post-pandemic era and is expected to revive the country’s fragile tourism industry, which accounts for nearly 10% of Vietnam’s economy and has been hit for the past two years.
There has already been a surge of interest, with many travelers researching Vietnam entry requirements and planning future trips to the country.
Vietnam announces reopening
Tuoi Tre, one of the most popular and widely circulated newspapers in the country, announced the good news.
In a featured article, Dinh Viet Son, Deputy Director of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam, said, “Vietnam will lift restrictions on international flights from February 15. Flight frequency will be restored to pre-pandemic levels.
After the announcement, Vietnam is already in talks with its airline partners to restore commercial flights. However, this is not the first foray into restoring air routes: since the beginning of the year, Vietnam had already reintroduced international flights in 15 key markets.
Vietnam began its long road to recovery by lifting domestic restrictions late last year and launching small pilot projects for Vietnamese travellers.
From there, Vietnam began welcoming foreign arrivals in November from a number of countries. This was followed by a relaxation of quarantine requirements, as visitors only needed to self-isolate for three days (instead of the two weeks at the start of the pandemic).
The sandbox projects targeted tourist areas such as Phu Quoc, Da Nang, Hoi An, Nha Trang and a handful of other popular spots. Under this program, tourists could purchase a tour package and enjoy a stress-free trip to Vietnam. This was because accommodations were essentially all-inclusive and tourists could enjoy activities that were limited to being in or around their accommodations for the first seven days of arrival.
The current situation of COVID-19 in Vietnam
As Vietnam slowly reopens, the country is closely monitoring its current situation and taking necessary health and safety measures.
The country has recorded more than 3.4 million coronavirus cases since the pandemic began in early 2020, and has seen three major waves of new cases.
According to the latest statistics, 83% of the population has received at least one dose, while 80% of the inhabitants are fully vaccinated. Similarly, the country recently launched a booster program and 40% of residents have already received their dose.
Although the number of new cases has recently increased, there are fewer hospitalizations compared to previous waves. This is likely due to the new Omicron variant, which spreads faster but has less severe symptoms.
Vietnam Entry Requirements
At this time, final entry requirements are unconfirmed. However, some important information is already known.
The U.S. Embassy in Vietnam noted that under the new tourism recovery plan, incoming tourists will need to have three items:
The first is proof of full vaccination (within the last 6 months and having received the last dose at least 14 days before arrival in Vietnam) or proof of recovery from coronavirus.
Next, travelers must have a negative COVID-19 test result, taken within 24 hours (for a rapid antigen test) or 72 hours (for a PCR test) before departure.
Finally, visitors will need to take out appropriate travel insurance. Insurance should cover up to $10,000 and should cost around $30.
Once in Vietnam, travelers will be required to self-quarantine on the first day of their trip.
Vietnam: what to see
After being closed to international tourism for nearly two years, it’s no surprise that many travelers are excited to visit Vietnam again.
To that extent, many have already started planning their trip. Here are the destinations that have generated the most interest during the reopening:
Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, is always a popular choice. This ever-bustling metropolis has something for everyone, whether it’s exploring chic cafes and restaurants, learning about the country’s history at a museum, or going beyond. concrete streets and enjoy nature.
Speaking of nature: the iconic karsts and emerald green waters of Halong Bay are another destination worthy of a bucket list. It’s no wonder it’s one of the most visited tourist spots in the country, with over 6 million tourists flocking to the area every year. Travelers can take a boat trip around the bay, explore nearby caves, or simply swim in the waters.
Hoi An, an important trading port since the 15th century, has retained its period charm and colorful houses to this day. The city’s old town has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, and popular attractions include the Japanese Bridge (also known as the symbol of the city!), the History and Culture Museum and a boat trip along the Thu Bon River.
(Devdiscourse journalists were not involved in the production of this article. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of Devdiscourse and Devdiscourse claims no responsibility for them.)