The number of Chinese travelers to the coastal city of Nha Trang has soared in recent months.
Le Van Son, director of Liberty Hotel, said since Chinese travelers began flocking to Nha Trang, the environment has become seriously damaged.
“Beaches, accommodations and entertainment centers are getting sleazy,” he said.
Nguyen Thanh Mang, director of Hieu Quan Trade & Tourism Service, also complained about Chinese travelers’ behavior. “They are noisy. They cause sanitary problems. Some European travelers will refuse to stay in hotels where there are Chinese guests,” he said.
Also according to Mang, most of the tour guides for Chinese travelers’ groups are from China. Meanwhile, under current laws, foreigners are not allowed to practice as tour guides in Vietnam.
Some Vietnamese are hired to work as tour guides for Chinese travelers, but they act just as a ‘screen’ for illegal Chinese tour guide activities. Most of the hired Vietnamese cannot speak Chinese fluently and they have not undergone training.
“Even if Chinese tour guides give false information, the Vietnamese won’t say anything,” he said.
Chair of the Nha Trang Tourism Association Lam Nhu Cuong cited foreign sources as saying that Chinese have surpassed Americans as the travelers with the highest spending when travelling abroad.
It is estimated that each Chinese spends $2,000 on one outbound trip but Chinese travelers to Nha Trang City have a low spending level.
Most of the Chinese travelers to Vietnam book closed tours organized by Chinese tourism firms, or ‘zero dong tours’, as called by Vietnamese.
“Since late 2017, the increase in the number of Chinese travelers has caused hotel room rates at 4-5-star hotels in Nha Trang to drop dramatically,” Son said.
“In the first two months of 2018, the rate dropped by 50 percent,” he added.
Deputy chair of Nha Trang City Tran Son Hai said the number of Chinese travelers to the city has increased sharply recently and will continue to rise in the upcoming years.
Meanwhile, infrastructure conditions have not met the new circumstances.
“As the number of foreign travelers to the city has increased sharply, both the tourism sector and state agencies don’t know what to do.
Preparing the workforce for the tourism industry is a burning issue for Khanh Hoa province,” Hai said, adding that the number of foreign travelers in 2018 may increase by one million and Nha Trang needs to be prepared.
According to the Khanh Hoa provincial Tourism Department, 146,300 Chinese travelers visited Nha Trang in January.