There’s nothing for cruise tourists to spend money on
VietNamNet Bridge – Travel firms complain that cruise tourists don’t have the
opportunities to spend money in Vietnam since there are very few points of sales
serving the special travelers.
According to Phan Xuan Anh, President of Viet Excursions, which specializes in
receiving cruise tourists arriving at the ports in Vietnam and Cambodia, most of
cruise tourists like buying local products. Since they travel on cruises, they
have the places to keep the bought things for a long time. Unlike the tourists
taking tours with other means of transport, cruise travelers are not afraid to
buy many things.
Therefore, selling goods to cruise tourists could be a big source of income for the localities with great tourist potentials. However, Anh said cruise tourists tend to be choosy about the products they buy. Since they can go to different destinations during the same trips, they can compare the local products at different destinations in terms of quality, prices and packaging.
Also according to Anh, there are three classes of cruise travelers.
Those who take short term tours on the cruises with the capacity of 1,000 passengers or more are the ones with medium or good income. They like buying souvenirs and the things with small sizes, durable, packable, which would be given to friends or relatives as gifts. The souvenirs’ prices should be reasonable.
Therefore, the valuable fine arts and handicrafts with big sizes and heavy weights would be refused by the travelers. They would prefer T-shirts, bags, small handbags, tablecloth or small lacquer products.
The second group includes the tourists booking long term tours (15-20 days) going on big cruises with high end services. Most of the tourists are middle aged and they regularly go with family members. The travelers tend to spend money on high end branded goods. They would be willing to pay for luxurious clothes, branded handbags and cosmetics.
They can also go directly to luxurious shops to choose fabric and have their suits tailored. Especially, they would spend money on the paintings made by famous painters.
These prove to be the travelers who have the highest spending levels at the destination points. They also choose the best products and use the best services at luxurious restaurants.
The third group comprises of the old tourists, aged over 65, who travel around the world during their trips. The travelers don’t like going shopping, while they would only pick some souvenirs.
Director of a travel firm has also noted that local people cannot grab the opportunities to sell local specialties to cruise tourists, simply because the sellers don’t understand the travelers well.
In many cases, local products remain unsalable just because of very odd reasons. Bee’s honey in the Mekong River Delta, Go Den liquor in Long An, or My Tho loyal jelly all have high quality, but they cannot be sold well just because of the unreasonable packaging. The director said that though travelers like the special products, they cannot bring the products with themselves because the packaging may cause inconvenience to them.
Anh has noted that the cruise’s crew could be the big buyers if they can find the things they want. In general, a cruise with 2,000 travelers would be served by the crew of 1,000 people. They always like buying things for their families or for reselling. Filipino crews, for example, like lacquer pictures to resell then they dock at Manila ports.