Embarking on the journey of starting a travel company in Vietnam opens up a myriad of opportunities for foreign investors. From the lively streets of Hanoi to the breathtaking Ha Long Bay, Vietnam’s allure as a global tourist destination sets the stage for an exciting venture.
In this article, we will delve into the prospects of entering the travel industry in Vietnam, the conducive business environment, and the step-by-step process for foreign investors to establish their presence.
Services Offered by Foreign-Invested Travel Companies
As outlined in Vietnam’s 2017 Tourism Law, foreign-invested travel companies are authorized to offer international tours exclusively for inbound tourists. This limitation implies that these companies can organize trips for international travelers exploring various destinations within Vietnam.
Starting a Travel Company in Vietnam: A Step-by-Step Guide
1. Legal Entity Registration:
Foreign investors must initiate the process by registering a legal entity for their travel company. However, it’s crucial to note that 100% foreign ownership is not permitted in Vietnam’s tourism sector. Instead, investors are required to establish a joint venture with a Vietnamese partner.
2. Application for Investment Registration Certificate (IRC):
Obtaining an Investment Registration Certificate (IRC) from the Department of Planning and Investment is the next crucial step. This certificate officially acknowledges foreign investment in Vietnam.
3. Application for Business Registration Certificate (BRC):
Investors need to apply for a Business Registration Certificate (BRC) from the Department of Planning and Investment. This certificate serves as official recognition of the business as a legal entity in Vietnam and requires specific documentation.
- Application form for business registration
- Draft of the company’s charter
- List of members/shareholders
- Copies of relevant personal identification
4. Tourism License from VNAT:
To operate a tourism business in Vietnam, a license for providing international tours from the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) is mandatory. Article 31 of the 2017 Law on Tourism outlines the criteria businesses must meet to secure this license.
- Legally established business in accordance with Vietnamese law
- Deposit of 50 million VND (approximately $2129) as a security measure
- Person in charge must have a diploma in tourism management or international travel management certification
Documents required for a tourism license application include:
- Application form
- Certified true copy of the BRC
- Certificate of deposit payment
- Certified true copy of the decision on appointment or employment contract for the person in charge
- Certified true copy of the qualifications of the person in charge
Services like GBS can streamline the process for foreign businesses, facilitating license acquisition and documentation.
Opportunities for Foreign Investors
Vietnam’s recognition as “Asia’s Leading Destination 2023” underscores its vast potential in the tourism industry. Foreign investors can explore diverse activities, such as:
1. Adventure Tourism Company:
Capitalize on Vietnam’s diverse offerings by creating adventure tourism packages. Activities like trekking, wildlife spotting, kayaking, rock climbing in Ha Long Bay, and canyoning in Da Lat present exciting opportunities.
2. Wellness and Health Tourism Company:
Tap into the growing wellness sector by establishing wellness retreats. Collaborate with local retreats to offer traditional Vietnamese therapies, catering to the increasing demand for wellness tourism globally.
3. Cultural Tourism Company:
With over 40,000 historical landmarks and eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Vietnam’s rich cultural tapestry provides a fertile ground for cultural tourism. Investors can curate experiences that showcase the country’s historical and cultural treasures, attracting tourists from around the world.
In conclusion, venturing into the Vietnamese travel industry as a foreign investor requires navigating legal procedures and leveraging the diverse opportunities the country offers. With careful planning and compliance, the journey of establishing a travel company in Vietnam can be a rewarding and fulfilling endeavor.