Two years of the epidemic caused many roads to be absent from the sound of engines. Off-road motorbike tourism is expected to return when Vietnam re-opens and welcomes international visitors.
A unit specializing in organizing tours by off-road motorbikes said that it provided hundreds of trips a year before the Covid-19 epidemic took place.
After two years of the pandemic outbreak, this company could only organize four trips due to a shortage of potential foreign tourists and could not guarantee tour guides. Many companies that organize motorcycle tours expect this once-popular form of tourism will quickly recover when Vietnam opens.
Staying in business for two years during the pandemic
Since 2020, the tourism industry has stagnated; off-road motorbikes in Vietnam have also been heavily affected by the lack of international visitors. Many businesses providing this tourism service are in trouble, finding enough ways to wait for the epidemic to pass.
Mr. Anh Wu, the co-founder of Offroad Vietnam Motorbike Adventures, said that the company has only organized four offroad trips in the past two years. The blockade regulations and travel restrictions have caused severe company impacts, a representative of Offroad Vietnam Motorbike Adventures shared with SCMP.
Without customers, the company’s tour guides have to find other jobs to maintain income during the epidemic season. Mr. Wu shared: “Sadly, many people have to change jobs to work as delivery drivers or technology drivers.” During the last four outbreaks, many foreign employees were forced to quit their jobs to return home. Mr. Anh Wu added.
The company diverted to provide bicycle tours for domestic customers in a difficult situation. Bicycle tours are popular because of their low cost and are suitable for the epidemic context. “The number of tours increased by more than 50% compared to before,” said a representative of this company. Many other offroad tour providers in Vietnam also face similar difficulties.
Duong Van Dong, Director of Indochina Motorbike Tours, shared that he had faced a terrible situation when thousands of guests canceled tours and asked for deposit refunds when the new pandemic broke out.
The golden age is over.
Before the pandemic, offroad tours were on the rise, which used to be a tourist trend favored by many international tourists and a part of domestic tourists.
Mr. Wu’s company used to receive hundreds of tour groups every year. A guide usually guides these tours. Customers participating in the offroad time of this company are very diverse, but there is a common need to want a memorable trip, crossing each road with a free mind.
“Before April 2020 was the golden age of this type of adventure tourism. The number of tourists booking tours at that time tended to increase; the audience also expanded,” Mr. Anh Wu shared with SCMP.
Mr. Nick Samson, the owner of Vietnam Motorcycle Tours based in Da Lat (Lam Dong), emphasized that offroad tourism is adventurous, cost-effective, suitable for adventure enthusiasts on each road. Road.
“Offroad helps tourists to socialize, make new friends at attractions, enjoy the surrounding sounds and landscapes especially,” Nick Samson describes the experience that offroad trips bring.
Confidence is back
To adapt to the epidemic situation and the general difficulties of the entire tourism industry, Indochina Motorbike Tours has changed the way it does business in the past two years. The company was forced to cut staff, cut wages and diversify business ventures.
The company maintains a small number of tours for foreigners living and working in Vietnam. “Overall, offroad tours have been stalled for the past two years. Hopefully, this type of tourism will return soon when Vietnam opens up shortly,” said Indochina Motorbike Tours Director.
Similarly, Vietnam Motorcycle Tours also organizes small group motorbike tours in Da Lat. The roads are designed far away from the main roads and famous tourist spots. “I want to introduce to my customers the pristine natural beauty of this highland land,” said the owner of this company.
In response to the positive tourism recovery signal, Nick has partnered with several foreign companies to organize tours to India and expand to Vietnam.
Offroad Vietnam Motorbike Adventures is also preparing for the return of upcoming offroad tours: “We have upgraded our fleet and prepared everything to welcome back adventure travelers. anytime”.