Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Another funny (and wrong) story about the dreams of Vietnam tourism

This article was available at, and this is such a perfect example of bad journalism. There are just so many facts wrong. See my comments in brackets.

VietNamNet Bridge – Representatives of the German national airline say the air carrier plans to open the direct air route Hanoi-Berlin during the visit of Andreas Timmerman, Director of the Foreign Trade and Trade Promotion Department under the Economy Ministry of Brandenburg state.

(There is no National Airline in Germany anymore, but they may mean Lufthansa. Why they don't name it? andreas Timmermann by the way is a more low ranking director in one of the poorest states in Germany).

Currently, Vietnam’s national air flag carrier Vietnam Airlines only provides flights from Hanoi and HCM City to Frankfurt.

At a recent meeting with leaders of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), an airline spokesperson said that Berlin is now the third biggest airport in Europe and has been upgraded and expanded.
(That can't be true, because actually Berlin is Number 28 in Europes airports and number 4 in Germany, needs to be upgraded and expanded, but isn't so. There are plans to build a new one in the future by 2012. Oh, and by the way there are actually 2 airports in Berlin, Tegel and Schönefeld)

In 2008, the airport served 21.4 million passengers, including 17 million transit passengers and 200,000 passengers who flew on Hanoi-Berlin route.
(Wikipedia says its 14,5 Million passengers in total. As far as I know ther is NO direct flight form Berlin to Hanoi for now. Actually there are just a few intercontinental flights from Berlin)

Confirming the intention to open the Hanoi-Berlin direct air route, the airline hopes the direct flights will help meet demands of businessmen and tourists traveling from Germany to Hanoi, especially the demand of tens of thousands of Vietnamese people living, working and studying in Germany.
(Yes, including those who are forced to leave Germany because they are illegal immigrants. Lufthansa has a strong focus on profitable business routes, and not so much about tourists).

Currently, Vietnam’s national air flag carrier Vietnam Airlines only provides flights from Hanoi and HCM City to Frankfurt.
(Yes, for a reason. The market isn't big enough for flights from Berlin. Frankfurt and Munic are still the big hubs for tourists.)

In addition, on November 30 the prospect of further cooperation and tourism development between the two sides as well as cultural exchange activities and trade promotion were discussed. These are slated to be held on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the relation establishment in 2010.

(It's not clear who was talking to each other. What would Lufthansa has to do with cultural exchange?? And why should a low ranking state official who is just involved in foreign trade of that particular state be allowed to speak in the name of whole Germany and Lufthansa??))

In addition, VNAT will organize a roadshow in Germany to display Vietnam’s tourist image
s. (Thanks. If it's like the other VN roadshows and trade fair apperances, you better use ATR's for the flights - you won't sell more than 20 seats)

Deputy Head of VNAT Hoang Thi Diep said that VNAT will propose the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to set up a tourism office in Germany soon.
(Really? Isn't that done by a local tour operator for now? And how this is going to be? Blue plastic chairs, metal tables, overexposured posters on the wall and 20 years old brochures combined with staff that barely speaks english and no German at all?)

Go back to journalism class, writer and start from beginning!


Tim said...

Great posting Thomas! VN newspapers are full of stories like this, mid-ranking officials pulling each other's peckers to justify their salaries and junkets. Read between the lines like you clearly have and you see nothing will actually come of it.

Thomas Wanhoff said...

Wow, Tim, that was fast .. for any reason I was expecting you here :-)))) Thanks for the comment.