HCM CITY The COVID-19 pandemic has had a severe impact on the economy, hitting tourism particularly hard, and the sector needs to accelerate digital transformation to manage the business and reach customers, experts said.
Traditional management and business methods have proven ineffective during the pandemic, requiring them to immediately embrace digital transformation.
Trần Trọng Kiên, chairman and CEO of Thiên Minh Group, one of Việt Nam’s leading travel and hospitality companies, said COVID has forced it on the tourism industry to change itself.
Việt Nam has nearly 44 million smartphone users, more than 67 million internet users, 66 million social media users, and 145 million mobile subscribers.
The Government has approved a national digital transformation programme from now through 2025 at the end of which it expects Việt Nam to become one of the 50 leading countries in information technology and the digital economy to account for 20 per cent of GDP.
These provide a premise for promoting digital transformation in all industries, especially hospitality and tourism.
Digital transformation is seen as one of the solutions to help the tourism sector overcome the slump caused by the epidemic.
Vũ Thế Bình, deputy chairman of the Việt Nam Tourism Association, said through digital transformation tour companies could reach more prospective travellers, provide better care to customers, reduce costs, and increase their business efficiency.
It is an inevitable trend for businesses to improve their competitiveness, he added.
With Gotadi, a flight and hotel booking app belonging to HG Holdings Group, a market leader in hospitality, is considered a successful example of digital transformation.
Hahalolo, an integrated tourism website based on a social network that introduces its services to tour providers and tourism enterprises, has been up for one year with more than six million users now.
It seeks to change Vietnamese travellers’ habits to exclusively booking tours and tickets online. — VNS