The 1st National Travel & Tourism Summit with the Public and Private sector held in Hanoi this week was an exciting, vibrant conference as it was meant to be, Intense Vietnam.

Bravo to all national and international governmental and private representatives (and the impeccable event organization!) that managed to keep an interesting substantial discussion during this 2-day gathering. As humble servants, we missed though some vital topics to be tackled deeper and not just briefly mentioned. Assets and environmental protection should also have been discussed in a more detailed, straightforward, Viet-style manner. We can’t just put the cart before the horse, we’ve seen that many times in other destinations, and it absolutely does not work.

One of the KEY topics was LITERALLY on the table. No one thought about it? Or no one dared to mention it? Having plastic water bottles on that U table at a high-level summit based on sustainable development was neither a sustainable nor elegant detail. And details can be so meaningful.

If we had to choose two messages from all the speakers, these would be the ones:

     – CNN Vice President Advertising Sales APAC: “We need to be aware that #Sustainability is not a marketing tool.” [#boom ! #WomenThatRock !]

    – Deputy Prime Minister: “… Quality, … segmentation, … environment, IT, innovation, optimize what we already have, create a #Tourism #Ecosystem that can and will be extrapolated to other industries and will help us to improve in other fields, … With coordination we can make possible the impossible.” Our passionate Sustainability manager even jumped from the chair to clap her hands. She got pleasantly surprised, since it was this last speech, after a 2-day conference, the one that transmitted more insight about #SustainableDevelopment and about #Tourism4SDGs, the main issues that were supposed to be addressed during the summit.

Our humble perspective about some other topics on the Summit’s agenda:

1. Matters addressed by some speakers that hit the target 2. Matters that can hit the target if smartly developed with prudence and moderation (aka Sustainably) 3. Other Matters
Tourism used as a TOOL for economic and ALSO social and environmental development Some speakers mentioned the need to “dramatically” increase our accommodation and airport capacities. We are not much into dramas, so we personally prefer that “Robust, sustainable growth” mentioned by the Singapore Tourism Board. Comparisons are interesting till certain point. Vietnam is not Singapore, Japan, Thailand, Dubai, Britain or Spain. We need to consider our intrinsic, one-of-a-kind circumstances to develop tourism policies fully adapted to our needs and interests on national, regional and local levels.
Quality over Quantity NTO overseas offices Instead of complaining about how difficult is to manage our younger workforces, the discussion in this regard should have been addressed about how to provide them with practical expertise and how to keep them motivated.  We really need to offer our young talents nice incentives so that they stay with us, in their native country.

(and according to our assets)

Infrastructures improvement and development framed within meticulous Destination Management and City-Plannings that tackle the most urgent priorities first.
Education, training, productivity, efficiency. Digital Pre-employment programs can only work together with humanistic and on-site classes. Telematics cannot provide a full scope about the art of serving
Innovation, IT Support foreign and national investments. Giving priority to those investors that propose lucrative, socially and environmentally concerned businesses.
Partnerships Omni-channel for visitors
Tourism policies and clear, nice goals International advisors can help to provide very interesting and objective insights, but that needs to be combined with local governmental and private knowledge and expertise.
Long term branding, positioning, authenticity
Marketing ROI
Easier Visa Procedure
Transparency, build trust as a destination

After this exceptional event, we are back to work again, doing our best to proceed and ACT as per the needs and interests of ALL our stakeholders and assets, because we understand that without them, it is just unfeasible to MANAGE this powerful double-edged sword that our industry represents.

Keeping it up!

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