Industry Update
Press Release 4 May 2020

Young, Independent, Digitally-Driven Travelers to Lead Vietnam’s Travel Reopening: China Vietnam Travel Sentiment Survey

Vietnam’s global tourism ambition needs to focus on China and short-haul travel, concludes latest research

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C9 Hotelworks Ltd.

BANGKOK - Vietnam's remarkable reopening of its domestic travel sector is expected to be replicated by focusing on short-haul Asian markets in a quest to restore their international tourism profile. The country has effectively demonstrated a Covid-19 leadership model in Southeast Asia with a focus on the all-important driver of airlift demand.

A newly released survey of qualified travelers from first tier cities in China by leading hospitality consulting group C9 Hotelworks and Delivering Asia Communications, created to understand relevant overseas travel sentiment for the remainder of 2020, analyses demand for Chinese inbound tourism to Vietnam.

Key points highlighted in the study are that nearly half of the respondents want to travel abroad this year, with 45% interested in traveling specifically to Vietnam. Moreover, post Covid-19 Chinese travelers are looking at more mainstream, well-known destinations with top Vietnam picks being Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Nha Trang/Cam Ranh Bay and Halong Bay.

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Speaking about the reopening of Vietnam tourism, C9 Hotelworks Managing Director Bill Barnett said "a post crisis short-term 'fear factor' is expected for extended air travel which will be manifested in a preference for short-haul, door-to-door flights, which is a key opportunity for China outbound to Vietnam."

"Of equal importance is to understand that at the moment, and in the coming months, domestic travel and tourism will define the gradual recovery process. What is significant about the China Vietnam Survey is who are the immediate post-crisis travelers and how can hotels and tourism stakeholders proactively meet their needs. We see a parallel trend in early travelers both domestically and from the China data, which pair up in a new tourism visitor profile," said Barnett.

Putting the market insights to use is an important sentiment voiced by David Johnson, CEO of Delivering Asia Communications, who added: "a 360 view of the results from over 1,000 qualified respondents concludes that tourism for the remainder of the year will be heavily leveraged by younger travelers in the age range of 20-29 years old, who increasingly place an emphasis on booking hotels on digital platforms."

"Two other significant trends from our China research showed that aside from sightseeing and eating being key activities, nature moved up in preference, which could be a reaction to a post-crisis change in tourism values. Diving into accommodation preferences, the two ends of the price spectrum of budget/economy and five-star hotels drew most positive responses from the Chinese surveyed," he said.

One final takeaway from the survey is how younger travelers are reflected in rising sentiment with 81% saying they would choose independent travel vs. group tours. This fact, coupled by younger Chinese booking travel digitally via WeChat and Fliggy is a new twist in Vietnam's marketing to China inbound tourists.

In addition to the survey, a special free web event is being held on Thursday 7th May at 2:00pm Vietnam time led by C9 Hotelworks and Delivering Asia Communications including leading experts Ken Atkinson, Founder and Senior Advisor of Grant Thornton Vietnam and Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Tourism Advisory Board, Michael Piro, Chief Operating Officer of Indochina Capital and David Keen, Chief Executive Officer, QUO. Register here:
https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_HKNCYBqmTW2Ooykp0pJKiA?fbclid=IwAR3IJSEMO6xK3iqYjFqvKAyocK9Ake_cr2VTDAseeVdwbvJwj8zmwOyPhzY=

Read and download the China Vietnam Travel Sentiment Survey 2020 here:
https://www.c9hotelworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/china-vietnam-travel-sentiment-survey-2020-05.pdf

About C9 Hotelworks

C9 Hotelworks is led by founder and Managing Director Bill Barnett, who brings over 30 years' experience in the Asian hospitality and real estate sectors. Prior to founding C9 in 2003, Bill held senior executive roles in hotel operations, development and asset management. He is considered to be a leading global authority on hotel residences, and has sat at almost every seat around the hospitality and real estate table. Bill promotes industry insight through regular conference presentations at key events and contributes to numerous industry publications. For more information contact www.c9hotelworks.com

Contact
Bill Barnett
Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks
Phone: +66 (0)8 1956 1802
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