Let me welcome you all to this presentation in many of the different languages spoken in the Nordic Countries … most of which I cannot even begin to pronounce. So let me just say it in my own language: Byenveni.
First of all, I would like to give you a brief introduction to our market.
When we speak of the “Nordic Countries,” we are talking about five different independent countries: Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Iceland.
So, this is what we are dealing with, the target of our efforts: Bringing people from this part of the world to this part of the world.
The total population of these five countries is twenty-four million, which puts them halfway between Australia and Canada.
For one, the Nordic people are fiercely independent. Sweden and Denmark are two of the three countries in the current European Union that have refused to join the common currency, the euro.
And that is one of the keys to this market: Whoever wants to get through to these consumers has to offer the same standards of quality and value that they are used to at home. And this also applies, of course, to a holiday destination that tries to grab a share of their travel budget.
These fourteen million people live in extremely prosperous societies, marked by low unemployment, moderate inflation, high income, high consumer spending, and (very important) high consumer confidence — which is the factor that keeps them spending.
These are eager consumers. These people are ready to spend. They can afford it. They do it. They are even used to high prices and high taxes. But they are also used to getting two things for their money: quality and value.
It is not surprising that across the Nordic Countries, more than eighty percent of the population have access to both a computer and the Internet, and own a cell phone. More than half the population have a computer and Internet access even in their own homes. This is one of the avenues on which we can find access to this market: it keeps our costs low, is very efficient, and it will portray us as a technologically advanced destination.
In the case of the Nordic Countries, we are dealing with IT societies in the truest sense of the word. Sweden was rated the world’s leading IT nation two years in a row, and according to the OECD, it is the world’s most knowledge-based society. This ranking assesses expenditures on R&D, software, and higher education.
What makes this even better is the fact that they also have plenty of time on their hands to travel and spend their travel budgets. Not only do they have five weeks of leave but they also have an average of a dozen public holidays. Together with weekends, this amounts to more than one hundred and forty non-working days per year — that’s more than twenty weeks! They certainly have time to travel.
In Sweden alone, the population spends about five percent of their disposable income on travel — and these five percent, in real money, amount to a staggering six billion euro. In one year! And that’s just Sweden. There is no question that these people can afford to travel.
And we should not forget that as far back as the days of the Vikings, the Norsemen loved to travel. They even discovered new continents. There is no doubt that: They love to travel.
Another key issue that we should keep in mind: They are very comfortable at home, but when they travel, they look for change, for alternatives.
And this factor is reflected in their travel patterns. Three out of five leave the Nordic Countries for holidays further south. Fifty percent stay in other parts of Europe, but ten percent prefer long-haul destinations outside of Europe.
Fortunately for us, the Danes and Swedes are not spoiled by easy travel options. Even at home, they have to cover vast distances or hop from one island to another. Denmark, for example, is made up of over four hundred islands. Even to visit your grandma, you might have to take a ferry, cross a toll bridge, go under water in a tunnel. It certainly ain’t easy.
So, when it comes to long-haul travel, a flight to another continent is not necessarily a bigger hassle than a drive across Sweden or Denmark. We have picked a few destinations popular with the Nordic population and compared them with the Seychelles in terms of travel convenience. Let us have a look at what it means for a Swede to fly from Stockholm to Bangkok in Thailand, Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, Sydney in Australia, or Mahé in the Seychelles.
First of all, our traveler will be quite happy to find out that the chances of jet lag are much smaller if he flies to Asia . In the northern summer, the time-zone difference is only two hours. For the other destinations, the gap is up to eight hours in the summer, and even ten in the winter. A look at the map will also show our traveler that the simple distance to Mahé, as the crow flies, is only half the distance to Sydney. Certainly, these are two points very much in favor of choosing Vietnam.
But then our friends gets to the travel agent and has her figure out the actual flight options that are available, as well as the prices. As he can fly directly from Stockholm to Bangkok, without changing planes, it takes him only ten hours. For the Seychelles, on the other hand, he would have to change planes in Paris, and this adds up to fourteen hours, including transit time. And when he hears the prices, not only the direct flight to Bangkok but even the slightly longer flight to Kuala Lumpur, with a stopover in Thailand, is still cheaper than the flight to the Seychelles! We have do ask ourselves not only: How do we compare? But also: How do we compete? It ain’t easy.
Facing strong competition, mainly from Southeast Asian destinations, but also from Australia and the Caribbean, we have to offer potential travelers the one incentive that beats them all: convenience. And convenience starts with access.
Once we provide them with hassle-free, affordable access to our destination, Vietnam have a lot to offer to some of the most interesting target groups available anywhere, and especially up here in the North.
The active elderly travelers, the DINKs, and the YIPs are all independent travelers, which means: they are flexible in their schedules, have money to spend, and have time for vacations. Although the professionals have obviously less flexibility and less time than those who are retired, all of these travelers are attractive target groups for us.
And on a private level, the people of the North lead very independent lives as well. Seven out of ten households have only one or two members: couples without children, single parents with one child, or people who live all by themselves (or maybe with a pet or two).
And there is a special group of independent traveler: those who have no obligations to their children, who have accumulated a vast amount of money over a lifetime of work, and who have practically unlimited time at their disposal Who are these independent travelers?
They are the most active group among travelers: the elderly, especially those between sixty-five and seventy-four. In Denmark, each of them takes more vacations per year than the population average. And the group of over-sixty-five-year-olds is the fastest-growing segment of the population: Across the Nordic Countries, they will soon make up one fifth of the population — and nearly half of them are still active travelers.
Even in a conservative calculation, this amounts to over two million active elderly travelers across the Nordic Countries!
Not surprisingly, these people are unlikely to give up their independent lifestyles once they are on holiday. Only a small fraction travels in prearranged groups, and mass tourism is an absolute horror for the vast majority.
What keeps them from coming? We all know that this year brought its share of bad news for the travel industry. While scares of terrorism linger on and are reinforced by recent attacks on tourism destinations in Southeast Asia, the threat of a war in the Middle East as well as the fear of contracting a contagious disease have kept potential travelers at home this year. But we should not forget that one destination’s scare might easily be turned into another destination’s golden opportunity — why not ours?
Over the past months, since we have taken over responsibility for this market, we have initiated a number of activities in order to familiarize the Nordic markets with this very special product: Vietnam
Our activities have included: visiting our major tour operators, giving in-house presentations, conducting an educational, attending trade fairs, holding press conferences, and media lunches. These are all pieces of a big jigsaw puzzle that have to interlock if we want to reach each and every segment of the market.
In order to reach the consumer, it is of vital importance to train and educate the actual counter staff who gets directly into contact with the potential traveler. Especially for those travelers who step into a travel agency undecided, the decision often depends on what the travel agent knows about a destination. At the same time, we have to supply the travel agents regularly with our promotional material and with training manuals, and we have to organize seminars and road shows, even if we cannot afford to take them all on educationals and fam trips.
So, to end this presentation, let me quickly summarize the results of what we have said and heard about the Nordic market.
Up here in the North, we have sixteen million people who love to travel individually and independently, who spend sixteen billion euro every year on travel, who have a total of twenty weeks of free time every year, and who are definitely looking for alternatives to their cold and dark winters.
And down there, we have a destination that is perfect for individual travelers and small groups, offers first-class luxury for those who have money to spend, offers the same kind of vacation experience anytime of the year, and offers a colorful landscape and a tropical climate that is the perfect alternative to the Northern winter.
I thank you for your patience in listening to this presentation, and I hope that we can rely on your support to achieve our goals in the Nordic markets.
Did you know that our ancestors were Vikings ? That’s why we like to travel! Did you know that we have a hotel that disappear every year! The Ice Hotel in Jukkasjärvi Did you know that during the summer we have daylight 24 hours - The Midnight sun
ECONOMY OF SCANDINAVIA <ul><li>Scandinavian population – about 24 millions </li></ul><ul><li>Largest exports – iron, paper wood </li></ul><ul><li>All 4 countries are doing well both socially and economically </li></ul><ul><li>An agening population (30 % of the population are over 50 yars old) </li></ul><ul><li>Small household sizes </li></ul>
<ul><li>Key sources used by Nordic travellers to decide destination for a trip </li></ul><ul><li>(It is a very consumer driven, sophisticated market) </li></ul><ul><li>Travel Agent 20% </li></ul><ul><li>Internet 20% </li></ul><ul><li>Travel promotions/articles 60% </li></ul>
<ul><li>How do Nordic travellers travel? </li></ul><ul><li>Alone 20% </li></ul><ul><li>With friends 50% </li></ul><ul><li>With family 75% </li></ul>
<ul><li>TRAVEL TRENDS </li></ul><ul><li>Activities when travelling </li></ul><ul><li>to foreign countries </li></ul><ul><li>Rest & Relax and tours 70% </li></ul><ul><li>Tours only and exploring the country 30% </li></ul>
<ul><li>Holidays in the nordic countries </li></ul><ul><li>School holidays – one week in the middle of February (week 9 or 10) </li></ul><ul><li>Easter holiday – one week in April (week 15 or 16) </li></ul><ul><li>Summer break – 10 weeks streching over the months of June, July and August. Scandinavians usually takes out their vacation during this period </li></ul><ul><li>Autumn break – school holidays one week in the middle of november </li></ul><ul><li>Christmas Holidays – Usually 2 weeks over the christmas holiday and new year </li></ul>
Fairs activities In-House Presentation s Educational Press Conference s Tour-Op . Visits Media Lunches
Key issues for the future <ul><li>Responsible tourism </li></ul><ul><li>Building bridges between cultures </li></ul><ul><li>Integration of local elements in Resorts and Restaurants. </li></ul><ul><li>Vietnams advantages in Eco tourism. </li></ul><ul><li>Adventure tourism </li></ul><ul><li>Online reservations </li></ul><ul><li>Online informations </li></ul><ul><li>Direct flights </li></ul><ul><li>Quality and safety </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>Roads </li></ul><ul><li>The people! </li></ul>
<ul><li>love to travel individually </li></ul><ul><li>have €16 million to spend </li></ul><ul><li>have 20 weeks at their disposal </li></ul><ul><li>are looking for alternatives </li></ul>16 million people who … in brief here
<ul><li>caters to individual travelers </li></ul><ul><li>offers quality and safety </li></ul><ul><li>is available all year round </li></ul><ul><li>offers an alternative climate </li></ul>a destination that … in brief t here
Qujanaq Giitit itt Aitäh Takk fyri Kiitos Kærar þakkir Mange takk Tack så mycket