Sunday, 12/11/2023 08:18

Việt Nam says xin chào to music tourism

By Thu Ngân

For weeks Hanoian Bùi Trang Dung was unable to decide where to take her family for vacation last summer.

“This place is beautiful in the summer, that place has many delicious foods and the other one is cheaper.” These were the words that constantly ran in the 42-year-old’s mind.

She then came across a piece of information about a music show by a famous singer she loved in Mù Cang Chải in the northern province of Yên Bái.

The holiday destination instantly chose itself: It was to be Mù Cang Chải.

Before and after the music show Dung and her family went around visiting some lovely sites and trying delicious local foods.

Like Dung, a young man in HCM City and a group of his friends impulsively decided to make a trip to Singapore next March to attend Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour and successfully managed to book tickets for it.

He told Việt Nam News he had visited Singapore several times and this time decided to go just to watch the show.

Of course, he and his friends would spend several days travelling around the “Lion City”, he said.

In recent times music tourism has grown extremely popular.

In a report, USA’s futuremarketinsights.com predicted that the global music tourism market would rise from US$5.5 billion last year to $11.3 billion by 2032.

The “need for travelling with a purpose” had set off this boom, it said.

“Social media influencers and bloggers prefer travelling for leisure, entertainment and content, increasing demand for music tourism.”

It also listed other reasons like improving living standards and just the love for music.

An image taken before South Korean girl band Black Pink’s Born Pink Tour in Hà Nội in July. Tourist arrivals in the city jumped 2.5-fold to 170,000, including 3,000 foreigners, during their two-day concerts. — VNA/VNS Photo Tuấn Đức

In a report it published in June, travel aggregator Agoda revealed there was an astonishing 814 per cent increase in searches in Việt Nam for accommodation in Singapore during UK rap band Coldplay’s concert series in January 2024.

The surge was also seen in neighbouring countries like Malaysia and Indonesia, but Agoda’s search data indicates Singapore can also expect more travellers from Hong Kong, Thailand, the US, Australia, India, the Philippines, and many other places.

“Music inspires a great deal of passion, and dedicated fans are truly remarkable as they will travel far and wide to see their favourite acts live,” Enric Casals, regional associate vice president Southeast Asia at Agoda, said.

“This spike in accommodation bookings is a testament to the undeniable lure of live musical experiences, showcasing the profound impact they have on travel decisions.”

To attract visitors, Singapore plans to organise mega events including music shows such as Swift’s in March 2024 and one by American singer Charlie Puth last month.

Việt Nam, a potential destination

The recent successful shows of famous international singers and bands like Black Pink’s Born Pink Tour in Hà Nội in July and Charlie Puth in Nha Trang and the fireworks festival in Đà Nẵng show that Việt Nam is capable of organising mega global shows.

In addition, many performances will be organised in the end of this year, in which Irish band Westlife will perform in HCM City in November, and the show’s tickets sold out within hours.

A music performance in Nha Trang, attracting many people across the country.
Many music performances have been organised in the country so far this year. — Photo from baotintuc.vn

Besides, many provinces and cities successfully organise small music shows, and music tourism has been wholeheartedly embraced by locals, especially during weekends.

Many famous Vietnamese artists with a large fan base, like Mỹ Tâm, Hà Anh Tuấn, Đông Nhi, Hồ Ngọc Hà, Trung Quân Idol, Văn Mai Hương, and Hoà Minzy, choose tourism destinations like Đà Lạt, Hà Nội and HCM City to hold concerts.

Other destinations are the northern provinces of Vĩnh Phúc and Yên Bái where "Soul of Forest", one of the most popular shows, is organised, featuring many famous singers.

Music shows are typically performed on large stages. However, shows that are "in the middle of nowhere" are getting much love from music fans seeking little getaways.

According to music composer Vân Trình, who spoke to phunu.nld.com.vn, the new trend provides music lovers with well-rounded experiences on both the ears and eyes.

Any scenic place can be turned into a stage, and fans are happy as long as organisers ensure the quality of the music.

The website quoted another movie director Gin Trần as saying that music habits have changed after the pandemic, and combining music and tourism can enrich all the senses and provide a soothing effect.

A music performance in Đà Lạt. Many tourism destinations organise music shows as a means to attract visitors. — Photo Courtesy of Lululola Show

According to experts, music tourism has been around in many western countries but has only recently come to Việt Nam.

Music festivals such as "Tomorrowland", "Coachella" and "Ultra Music" have attracted a large number of enthusiasts every time.

Popular K-pop bands, like BTS and BlackPink, have created a travel trend with fans following their idols to every concert.

When a concert is held, music lovers buys ticket and fly out to the performance venue to support their idols, and they need accommodation, food and drinks, souvenirs, and other entertainment.

As it becomes a trend, music shows not only publicise Việt Nam to the world but also play an important role in the development of the tourism industry, especially at a time when the country hopes to develop the night economy.

The economic fallout of mega shows, including music performances, is huge for everyone involved.

The Hà Nội tourism authority said tourist numbers jumped 2.5-fold to 170,000, including 3,000 foreigners, in July when there were two days of BlackPink concerts in the city.

Tourism revenues are estimated at VNĐ630 billion ($26 million).

Klook has seen huge demand from all markets after revealing its collaboration with the Taylor Swift concert in Singapore.

In Việt Nam, it saw the installation of its app increase by 80 per cent.

This demand would continue to pump up until D Day, the company said.

It did expect great demand for the Klook Experience Package, but it is safe to say that was an understatement as more than 600,000 fans from across the region eagerly waited in line and shelled out more than SG$1,700 (US$1,240). It sold out within a couple of hours.

Việt Nam accounted for the eighth highest number of buyers globally, Klook reported.

American singer Charlie Puth at a show in Nha Trang in July. Many foreign singers have been flocking to Việt Nam to perform this year. — Photo baotintuc.vn

In an interview with Việt Nam News, Nguyễn Huy Hoàng, general manager of Klook Vietnam, said his company’s recent Travel Pulse survey found that travellers, especially millennials and Gen Zs, crave authentic experiences, which are now the first consideration when planning a holiday.

"This includes mega events like concerts such as the Taylor Swift - The Eras Tour in Singapore," he said, pointing out that destinations which leverage celebrities and entertainers’ fan bases attract visitors from across the region.

“This touches on a new growth segment that can bring great economic benefit," he said.

“Flights, transportation and accommodation are the first things to go up, followed by F&B, retail, and other travel services throughout the event duration.

“As event goers tend to spend several days before and/or after the actual event, they start looking for other things. This is when the destination can upsell travel products like attractions, tours and activities.

"Our own data also suggests that when a tourist attends a concert or event, the incremental spending can range from four to five times the ticket value, and most importantly, this incremental spend is going to local businesses and the economy."

Irish band Westlife will perform in HCM City in November, and the show tickets sold out within hours. — Photo Westlife FB fanpage

To boost tourism through major events, experts suggested learning from other countries that organise such shows.

Klook said such events could be leveraged to create an influx of tourists to Việt Nam too, benefiting local businesses such as hotels and restaurants and stimulating the economy.

But there is a need to invest in facilities, infrastructure and venues that should be well-equipped to host large events like concerts and other performances.

The country should also make good use of marketing channels to showcase its unique attractions, landmarks and experiences and link them with the global user base, Klook said.

This exposure could encourage fans to explore various destinations and experiences and ultimately boost tourism spending, it added. VNS

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