Update: 20:19 | 24/08/2021
Thua Thien-Hue Province, home to popular tourist town Hue, has disbursed VND1.86 billion ($81,600) to 503 tour guides who lost their jobs to Covid-19.
Nguyen Van Phuc, deputy director of the provincial tourism department, said 510 affected tour guides have applied for the government support package but only 503 were eligible, local media reported.
A foreign tourist visits the Hue Imperial Citadel in 2020.
Due to the severe, two-year impacts of Covid, these jobless tour guides have had to switch to sales, insurance consulting and tutoring to earn a living.
Under the government resolution issued last month on the second pandemic relief package to help poor individuals and businesses hit by Covid-19, tour guides are entitled to receive VND3.71 million each.
To access financial support, they are required to show their valid licenses granted prior to May 1, 2021 and have not yet received any previous monetary aid.
Before the pandemic, over 26,000 tour guides were licensed to operate in the country, including 16,000 specializing in outbound tours, according to official statistics.
Hue, capital of Thua Thien-Hue Province and renowned for its Imperial Citadel and royal tombs, received over 4.8 million visitors in 2019, 2.1 million of them foreigners.
Since last week, Hue shut down tourist destinations, historical relics and banned gatherings of over 20 people amid the complicated development of the ongoing outbreak that struck the country since late April.
Vietnam's tourism industry experienced one of the most difficult periods in its history last year when Covid-19 slashed the number of foreign arrivals by nearly 79 percent to 3.8 million.