Vietnam extends visa fee exemption through year's end

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Vietnam has extended a program to waive visa fees for foreign tourists through the end of this year, the government announced on Thursday.

Tourists coming to Vietnam on trips organized by travel agencies under the "Vietnam Your Destination" campaign are eligible for the fee exemption scheme, according to a report published on the government's website.

The current cost of an arrival visa is US$25 for each foreign tourist.

The country is implementing the "Vietnam Your Destination" promotion campaign, following a similar program last year. It had previously planned to offer the visa fee exemptions until September only.

Foreign visitors to Vietnam in the first nine months reached 3.7 million, up 34.2 percent from the same period of last year, according to the General Statistics Office. Vietnam is expected to welcome 4.2 million foreign arrivals this year.

The government's report cited experts who attributed the sharp increase in arrivals this year to effective promotion policies. The millennium anniversary in Hanoi has also proven an attractive draw for foreign tourists, it said. 

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