Domestic and foreign visitors to HCMC can find it easier to obtain useful information, advice and support via the Internet, phone hotline or travel information centers as the city is working on a project to make travel information available for tourists.
The HCMC Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has presented this project to the municipal government after consulting some departments.
Instead of making information available only at relevant state agencies and travel firms, the city will develop a more comprehensive information system to meet the needs of visitors and promote the HCMC tourism brand and products of tour operators.
This system will include a travel portal of the city at www.vibrant-hochiminhcity.com and a phone hotline for tourists on 1099.
In addition, four travel information centers will be built next to Ben Thanh Market, the Central Post Office, Lam Son Park in front of the City Opera House, and the international terminal at Tan Son Nhat International Airport. Tourists can get travel guides, maps and other publications.
The project will be deployed over six years with a total cost of nearly VND14 billion, with more than VND7 billion to be spent on equipment, software and human resources, said the tourism department.
The system will need over VND2.4 billion in the first year of implementation, nearly VND2.8 billion in the second year and some VND1.4 billion in the third year. Thereafter, it will be able to finance itself through commercial operations.
Last year, the HCMC Tourism Association suggested the city government allocate around 150 square meters of land at September 23 Park in District 1 to open a tourist support center. However, this schemed has not materialized.
The total number of international visitors to HCMC in the first five months is estimated at 1.6 million, up 7% year-on-year, generating about VND34.4 trillion in revenue, up 15% over the same period last year. The city expects some 4.1 million international tourist arrivals this year, according to the HCMC tourism department.