On Monday, Nguyen Van Tuan, head of the Central Tourism Department, told Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper that he did not agree with Quang Ninh’s new pricing scheme regarding excursion tours around Ha Long Bay.
The northern province has sparked widespread opposition in both tourist and business communities towards its directive No 3620, which almost doubled admission fees for Ha Long Bay excursions as of December 1.
| Ha Long Bay - Photo: Tuoi Tre |
According to the decision, tourists departing from Ha Long port and following any of the five excursion routes will be charged from VND40, 000 to VND130, 000 a person (USD2 - USD6.5), nearly twice the previous rates.
Tuan said that he had discussed the issue with the leadership of Quang Ninh and suggested that the province suspend its plan, as “it is not the right time to hike the price,” he said.
The department head also requested Quang Ninh to devise a reasonable pricing scheme which incorporates discounted prices for domestic tourists.
“There also have to be reasonable proposals accepted by the tourism business community,” he stressed, adding that he believed the province would soon make adjustments to its policy.
Thus far Quang Ninh’s senior officials have yet to make any official comments regarding the issue.
Nguyen Van Thanh, deputy head of Quang Ninh’s People Committee and the official who authorized the scheme, has failed to respond to all requests by Nguoi Lao Dong’s reporters.