Saigon: Only a stone’s throw away
Exciting news: Vietnam Airlines has announced that it will launch flight services between Ho Chi Minh City and San Francisco from 28th November 2021.
The airlines is planning to open the route to its first U.S. destination in phases and the new flight will operate with the following schedule:
- VN98 Ho Chi Minh City to San Francisco, departing at 8:40PM and arriving at 7:30PM.
- VN99 San Francisco to Ho Chi Minh City, departing at 11:00PM and arriving at 6:40AM +2.
The flight will cover a distance of 7,838 miles and will last approximately 13hr 50min eastbound and 16hr 40min westbound. The flight will operate twice weekly in both directions, on Sundays and Wednesdays, with plans to increase to daily frequencies once the pandemic further subsidies. Vietnam Airlines intends to use a mix of Airbus A350-900s and Boeing 787-9s for the route.
The announcement comes as Vietnam begins to reopen its borders to foreign tourists for the first time since March of 2020.
We are thrilled to see this route being launched. Besides Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong Delta, travellers from the U.S. will be able to visit some of the most stunning destinations in South East Asia, among others Phu Quoc, Hoi An, Hanoi and the world famous Halong Bay.
The Government Office announced that a pilot plan to welcome international visitors has been approved. The plan will be divided into three phases, starting from this November:
In the first phase from this November to December, foreigners will be able to visit: Vietnam’s biggest island Phu Quoc; the central city of Da Nang; Quang Nam Province (home to the ancient town of Hoi An); Khanh Hoa Province (home to the Nha Trang beach town) and Quang Ninh Province (where the famous Ha Long Bay is located). The tourists need to book the package tour(s) with a local travel agent(s) and arriving via either charter flights or international commercial flights (the tourists will stay for 7 days at the destination).
Saigon is aiming to open by DEC 2021 (without quarantine but the tourists must stay at least 7 days in Saigon before travelling to other destinations).
In the second phase that takes effect from January 2022, the scale of the pilot plan will be expanded by connecting destinations through regular charter and international commercial flights.
Tourists could participate in travel programmes that combine multiple destinations after completing their tours at the first destination within seven days. Five destinations – Kien Giang, Nha Trang, Da Nang, Quang Nam and Quang Ninh – will be piloted first and some other localities will be added to the programs later as long as the pandemic conditions permit, and the local authorities submit proposals to welcome international tourists.
Vietnam’s tourism market will fully open to international tourists in the last phase, the starting time of which will be based on the contemporary pandemic situation on the evaluation of the two previous phases.
Above plan might change depending on Covid 19 development and vaccinations progress in Vietnam.
Note: Since the entry requirements in our destinations change almost daily, we recommend that you keep yourself up to date with the latest developments on a regular basis.