Vietnam short of tour guides

Vietnam has over 4,700 local and 9,900 international tour guides meeting only 15 and 40 percent of practical demand, according statistics by the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism.

Foreign visitors at Ben Thanh Market, HCMC (Photo: SGGP)
Foreign visitors at Ben Thanh Market, HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

About 50,000 tourist students graduate from universities, colleges and vocational levels annually. However, only 5 percent those of bachelor’s degree and 30 percent students of college and vocational training levels work in tourism field. In fact, recruiters have to steadily retrain most of new graduates.
Deputy director general of Muong Thanh Hotel Group Tran Ngoc Luong said that the company takes about 6-12 months to retrain new graduates.
The quality of tour guides is weak especially in foreign language level, said Dr. Pham Hong Long from the National University of Social Sciences and Humanities. That is a difficult problem amid global integration, he added.
The education and training industry has share of responsibility in this issue. In addition, standards to grant tour guide certificates have been loosened and created job opportunities for guides without formal training in tourism. They just need to pass a short training course and meet requirements to work as tour guides.
Dr. Tran Van Long from Hanoi Tourism College proposed to intensify the connectivity between schools and businesses to improve the quality of tour guides across over the country.

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