vietnam reopening borders

Vietnam Starts to Plan Reopening for Tourists with Vaccine Passports

Vietnam’s reopening date for tourism is still uncertain. As of today, only a very limited number of essential workers are allowed entry. A 21-day quarantine and PCR are mandatory.

However, from last month local media has been reporting that the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism is working with relevant agencies to try to reopen for vaccinated tourists around July 2021. 

Vietnam Opening Tourism – Latest Updates

Vietnam

April 4

A few days ago, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc asked his ministers to start working on a plan to reopen international fights and also to prepare the necessary protocols to start using “vaccine passports.”

Vietnam has been one of the most successful countries worldwide at containing the spread of the virus. Early on, the government implemented centralized quarantines, effective contact tracing and quick lockdowns. 

“The war against the virus is not over and there is still a lot to do.” said the Prime Minister. Thus, it is expected that this potential reopening would be slow and with multiple restrictions. The government has not released more information about it as of yet.  

March 12 

The potential reopening for vaccinated tourists is yet to be officially confirmed. However, the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism stated the government is working on the possibility to create the so-called vaccinated passports to identify those who have already been immunized and -maybe- reopen the country for these kinds of visitors.

Vaccination rollout 

Vietnam started its vaccination program on March 8. The country expects to target a limited group of people from priority groups, such as healthcare workers, staff working at quarantine sites, essential service workers and senior citizens over 65 with chronic diseases for now.

February 14

Vietnam authorities have extended the quarantine to 21 days, instead of the previous 14. The cause is the threat that new strains of COVID-19 in different continents pose for the Vietnamese population. (Source)

The country has approved the use of AstraZeneca vaccines but it has yet to receive its first shipment out of the 30 million doses promised. (Source)

What is open in Vietnam at the moment?

Due to the low coronavirus cases, the country has been slowly reopening some tourist venues, mostly to local tourists. 

  • March 12: Quang Ninh authorities reopened bars, nightclubs, video game centers, movie theaters, and karaoke parlors.
  • March 9: Ho Chi Minh City authorities reopened some of its gyms, fitness centers, and pubs.
  • March 8: Vietnam started vaccinations beginning with front-line workers and health care staff in 13 cities and provinces that have had an outbreak.
  • March 2: Hanoi authorities have decided to reopen local restaurants and cafes at a limited capacity. 
  • (Source)

What is the current COVID-19 situation in Vietnam?

Vietnam has been considered a success story at curbing the ravages of the pandemic. As of April 4, the country has reported 2,626 positive cases and 35 deaths.

The country acted fast once information about the virus became available. It closed its borders in early March and quarantined and tested returning citizens at government centers. Widespread testing and contact tracing occurred.

While the current lockdowns are expected to have an economic impact on the country, people are optimistic. There is a great deal of confidence in the government thanks to its successful response early in the year. Projections are good that the economic repercussions will be mild.

For more information about the pandemic in Vietnam, click here.

Travelers in Vietnam

Vietnam airport

Since March 22, 2020, Vietnam’s borders have been closed to tourists. Only Vietnamese nationals and those conducting either official or essential business were allowed into the country.

All those arriving were required to undergo testing and a 14-day quarantine.

While no new tourist visas are being issued right now to Vietnam, the country has extended temporary residence to those foreigners who entered the country after March 1st, 2020. The government has been extending this permission to stay every few months.

These visitors must fill out an online medical declaration and provide the location where they are residing.

Foreigners are expected to follow the same rules as local residents. They will be fined if they fail to wear a mask in public or follow other rules.

Vietnam attracts tourism from all around the world

Street in Vietnam

Dating back to 2000 BC, Vietnam has one of the most ancient cultures in South East Asia. Since then, it’s been influenced by the Chinese as well as Khmer, Indians and of course the French, who colonized the country.

One area in which the French influence can still be seen is the country’s coffee culture. This makes it unique in a region more known for tea.

The cuisine is also unique and delicious. From refreshing soups to French inspired sandwiches and exquisite tropical fruits.

There are also beautiful beaches, magnificent mountains, and budget accommodations. The people are generally friendly. One way to experience the local culture is to shop in the roadside markets. Here visitors will not only find delicious food, they will also be able to shop for local crafts.

Guided tours can take visitors through a variety of natural wonders. In the north, there are many lakes and limestone caves.

In Central Vietnam, visitors enjoy touring the red and white sand dunes. In the southern part of the country, the Mekong Delta provides a look at an ancient lifestyle with its houseboats and river people. It is also rich in biodiversity – 10,000 new species have been found here.

Vietnam

Vietnam is an interesting and beautiful country in Southeast Asia. While it is currently undergoing another resurgence of the coronavirus, given how quickly the government got things under control, there is hope that the country will be able to open for tourists soon.

When it does, it would be a great place to visit with its stunning natural beauty, ancient culture and delicious food and coffee.

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