The number of foreign arrivals reached 11,000 in February alone, down by 38.3% from January’s figures.
The GSO attributed the sharp fall to the serious impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially the resurgence of the virus in January, on the tourism industry.
The majority of foreign arrivals in the reviewed period were experts, technical workers, and drivers who transported goods on roads through border gates, according to the GSO.
In a recent report produced by the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), this year is likely to prove extremely challenging for the local tourism industry. Vietnam has yet to reopen its borders to international tourists due to COVID-19, therefore the number of foreign arrivals will remain low in the coming months.
Though Vietnam represents one of the bright spots for effectively controlling the spread of COVID-19, the local tourism industry has been greatly impacted by the pandemic.
Relic sites, sightseeing spots, and entertainment areas nationwide have been forced to shut down several times, with many travel agencies finding it difficult to do business amid COVID-19 fears.
The VNAT has recently carried out domestic travel stimulus schemes aimed at boosting online tourism advertisement through social networks, including YouTube, with the aim of helping the local tourism industry to recover in the post-COVID-19 period.