Danang anticipates domestic travel business in May

Hoteliers plan for a surge in domestic travel after the country’s lockdown ends on April 22

Furama Resort Danang: focusing first on the domestic market.

DANANG - The lockdown in Thailand is keeping Danang hoteliers busy as they review and restructure their businesses and anticipate a surge in domestic travel after it ends come end-April.

Mr Nguyen Duc Quynh, deputy general director of Furama Resort Danang/Furama Villas Danang, Ariyana Convention Centre Danang, and CEO of Hotels & Resorts Division Phu Long Real Estates JSC, said that his team is taking advantage of this time to train staff and create a productivity plan.

"When social-distancing is over, international visitors will not be able to travel right away; we need to focus on the domestic market first, with promotion, and suitable packages to stimulate tourism industry.

"Enterprises should focus on safety, security, preserving the value of assets, get ready to reopen; offering suitable packages when we eye the light at the end of the tunnel.

"In the post COVID-19 era, the return of tourism industry will be extremely strong." He expects sharp growth in the business. "Therefore, the city, hotels and tourism enterprises should be prepared to promote and attract first visitors, after COVID-19," he added.

Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi: its main marketing conduit will be via social media.

Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi director of sales & marketing/regional director of business development for Accor in Vietnam, Cambodia & Laos, Mr Anthony Slewka, said that the "new normal" will include a change in travellers' buying habits and more specifically personal preferences regarding social interaction in public venues, seating, and menus.

"Hotels are only guessing at this point and certainly hygiene protocols and spacing will be called into question. The other reality is that everyone will be attempting to catch the customer as travel restrictions ease - and this will create a highly competitive environment.

"Competition will encourage some hotels to discount significantly. At Sofitel Legend Metropole and some other Accor hotels, we will try to focus on added values as much as possible."

The domestic offers for Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi will include room sales on Facebook such as staycation packages ranging from US$250-US$290 for a room for two with breakfast over the summer period, US$100 F&B dining credits per day, and transport to and from the airport/Hanoi.

The package will also be on All.accor.com and distributed in modified via key domestic partners through end-May for stays till end-September. Business travelers will have a long stay rate with shortened stay requirements to qualify along with other perks such as transportation.  

For F&B revenue, the hotel will target Hanoi residents with new menus, high tea promotions and value-add incentives for events. There will be fewer buffet concepts and more a la carte offerings, availability of hand sanitizers, and spacious seating where possible. Hotel ambassadors (staff) will be specifically trained on hygiene-oriented serving methods and the hotel will promote its HACCP certification. It claims to be the first five-star hotel in Hanoi to get the full rating.

"The main marketing conduit will be Facebook (the most popular platform for Vietnam for F&B promotion) and social media and digital in general," said Mr Slewka.

Grand Mercure Danang's GM, Mr Guy Poujoulat, said: "Following (the) extension of the social distancing measures to April 22 we are talking at best to stimulate the above target market from May onwards. Then regionally targeting the leisure domestic clientele along with regional MICE and non-residential business.

"Summer and school holidays are only 2.5 months away and some domestic airlines are already proposing very aggressive campaigns.

Seif Hamdy, GM, Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort: "We believe that there is great opportunity for domestic recovery soon."

Mr Seif Hamdy, GM, Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort, InterContinental Danang, said: "Vietnam has seen minimal number of cases with zero deaths so far. This has given us confidence in the domestic market and we believe that there is great opportunity for domestic recovery soon. The safety and wellbeing of both our staff and our guests are the top priority for us here at InterContinental Danang, as such the resort is strictly following social distancing guidance from the authority. Until we are certain that it is once again safe to travel, we will not be actively promoting any offer.

"In anticipation of the recovery, we have prepared several attractive offerings for the domestic market, however it is too soon to set any concrete timeline at this moment. During a crisis like this, we remain cautiously optimistic. Our team is constantly monitoring the situation and we are ready to respond immediately as soon as the situation changes."