12 souvenir shops in Ha Long City are forced to shut down from October 26 following a request from the local authorities for failing to meet criteria set by the Department of Tourism.
Huong Duong Thang Long, one of 12 shops that are forced to shut down
Ho Quang Huy, vice chairman of Ha Long People’s Committee, signed the decision. The shops must complete required procedures and upgrade to meet the criteria within this month.
Ward authorities were asked to co-operate with the inter-department inspection teams to improve tourism services. Transportation and tourism firms that bring visitors to shut down facilities will be punished. Utility firms were also asked to stop providing services to shops that fail to comply with the ban.
Various violations of tax and invoice regulations at these 12 shops and involvement in zero dollar Chinese tours meant some of the same shops were forced to shut down in March. They only changed the names and resumed previous operations.
Since early 2015, cheap tour packages are being offered to Chinese tourists and Vietnam is one of the popular destinations for such tours. Chinese tourism firms offer very low tour packages for visitors. Visitors only have to pay for plane tickets and don’t have to worry about accommodation or entrance fees to beauty spots.
However, once in Vietnam, they are transferred to another firm. Their stay at hotels are cut short and the meals are cheap. They are also forced to visit overpriced shops or services of such firms. The industry is badly affected as visitors rarely want to return to Vietnam a second time.
Thailand also cracked down on zero dollar tours which the country claims led to losses of USD9bn.
Via : Sapa Luxury Travel