Vietnam is eyeing the resumption of regular international passenger flights, targeting daily flights to partnering jurisdictions in September.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) submitted a proposal to the Ministry of Transport to ramp up international flights in three phases, it says in a 31 March statement.
This comes as Vietnam’s prime minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc issued a call on 17 March for preparations to reopen international air travel, including the possibility of introducing “vaccine passports”.
In phase one, flights are targeted at bundled flight and hotel travel packages for Vietnamese citizens serving 14-day quarantines. No timeline was provided.
Phase two will be implemented from July, focusing on re-establishing air connectivity with other countries. There will be four weekly return flights for each airline in each destination country, which includes Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. The flights are also subject to the quarantine capacity at Vietnam and the arrival airports.
The third and final stage begins in September. Vietnam is targeting daily return flights to each destination country. In this phase, Vietnam will allow entry to foreigners with a negative Covid-19 test result or vaccine certificate to serve a shortened seven- to 14-day home-quarantine.
The launch of the final phase will depend on the progress of Vietnam’s vaccination programme, and it plans to restore air connectivity with countries that have similar vaccination standards and protocols to curb the spread of Covid-19.
CAAV says that local authorities will recognise international vaccine certificates issued by government-approved immunisation establishments or the World Health Organization’s vaccination system.
Cirium data shows that seat capacity on international flights to Vietnam from January to March was 115,000-149,000 each month, a far cry from the 1.8-1.96 million seats for the same period in 2019.