One of the best jobs now is tourism consultancy, especially giving advice to local authorities on local tourism development.
A director of a provincial sports and tourism department told reporters on the sidelines of an event held recently in HCMC that he is looking for experts who can give advice in drafting the local tourism development strategy.
He said it was easy to find foreign consultants, but their service fee is high, up to millions of dollars. Some Vietnamese experts have refused the job as they are too busy.
In the past, consultants mostly gave advice to travel firms to develop new tourism products. Now, they are hired to draft local tourism development strategies.
Not only provinces and cities, but towns and communes also have demand. An analyst commented that local authorities now tend to be choosier: they want to hire professional consultants to draft strategies rather than do it themselves.
They need advice when planning a specific product – community tourism, agriculture tourism, or a new pedestrian street.
Phan Dinh Hue, director of Vong Tron Viet, a travel firm, said many provinces and cities want to develop tourism, but they do not know where to start, so they need advice.
The demand has increased sharply since early last year, when the Communist Party Politburo released Resolution 08 on turning tourism into a key business field.
“Some localities have proposed cooperation, but I have refused them because I will be busy until the year end,” he said, adding that the demand for the service is high, while there are not many experienced strategists.
For the last two years, Hue, while running his travel firm, has shifted to provide consultancy services. Like other consultants, he cooperates with experienced specialists in different fields to draw up projects.
Thoi Bao Kinh Te Sai Gon quoted its sources as reporting that the consultancy service fee set by Vietnamese experts is more reasonable than that set by foreign consultancy groups. In general, local authorities have to pay from VND500 million to VND1 billion for each project, or pay in accordance with the jobs done.
The experts who have the largest business are those in big tourism centers including Hanoi and HCMC. In addition, retired officials who once worked for tourism agencies or state management agencies also receive many invitations. Some tourism schools have also begun providing the service.
Commenting about the quality of the strategies, Pham Ha, CEO of Luxury Travel, said local authorities pay too much importance to the number of travellers. Some strategies only plan short-term development, and do not consider long-term sustainable development.
According to a report on Vietnamnet