Vietnam’s tourism numbers bounced back in July thanks to a surge in visitor numbers from Europe following a visa waiver policy.
Figures from the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism showed that foreign arrivals jumped to 593,566, 12.1 percent up from June and 5.1 percent from the same period last year.
The agency attributed the rise to a 71 percent year-on-year increase in the number of Spanish nationals visiting the country together with 18.3-45.1 percent increases from Italy, Germany, and the UK.
In July Vietnam added those countries to the list of countries whose nationals do not require a visa for a 15-day stay following months of decline in tourism.
Industry insiders said the visa waiver policy has successfully tapped the summer travel demand in Italy and Spain. The peak season in the UK, France, and Germany starts in October.
But they also said the government needs to give tourists more time in Vietnam since 15 days are not enough when many tourists also visit Laos and Cambodia.
Citizens of ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) member countries do not need a visa to enter Vietnam while nationals of Denmark, Finland, Japan, Norway, Russia, South Korea, Belarus, and Sweden do not need a visa for a single entry and visits of up to 15 days.