31st SEA Games in Vietnam officially set for May 12 to 23, 2022

Finally, the delayed 31st Southeast Asian Games (also referred to as 31st SEA Games or Hanoi 2021) that will be hosted by the City of Hanoi in Vietnam will officially take place from May 12 to 23, 2022 as the event organizers announced recently. This is a breakthrough following the previous announcement that May 2022 would be the month of organizing the events that will lure the best athletes of Southeast Asia.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the article published recently by Philippine News Agency (PNA). Some parts in boldface…

Organizers of the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) in Vietnam announced on its website on Friday that the biennial multi-sport games postponed from last year will be held from May 12 to 23 next year.

The specific dates were posted on Vietnam’s national Olympic committee website and reported by Channel News Asia (CNA).

The Games will open three days after the Philippines holds its national elections on May 9, 2022, and according to Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president, Rep. Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino, the majority of the athletes, coaches, and officials on Team Philippines would be unable to cast their votes.

This is one of those sacrifices of having to represent the country in an international competition,” he said in a news release.

The POC has determined a 626-athlete delegation to the Vietnam games, which will be played in the Hanoi main hub.

The main bulk of the delegation will be leaving for Vietnam no less than a week before the opening ceremony,” Tolentino said. “This is because our athletes need to acclimatize and get the feel of the competition venues, environment, and weather.”

It gets hot in Hanoi in May, with temperatures expected to reach 34 degrees Celsius.

Hanoi hosted the SEA Games for the first time in 2003 in a December schedule when the weather was wintry, with temperatures dropping to 11 degrees Celsius in the evening.

Vietnam originally scheduled the SEAG from November 21 to December 2 last year, but was forced to postpone it due to the pandemic.

Hanoi will be the main hub with 11 other sub-venues.

Vietnam, the ANC said, has allocated a budget of about USD69 million (PHP3.45 billion) for the games, which are expected to attract nearly 20,000 participants, 7,000 of them athletes from 11 countries.

Visiting Vietnam

With regards to Vietnam, those who plan to visit the country during this pandemic should take note that recently the country opened specific tourist destinations for foreigners without the hassle of quarantine related to COVID-19. There will be specific rules and requirements that should be met in order for foreigners to be accepted. Posted below is an excerpt from the New Straits Times report. Some parts in boldface…

VIETNAM has opened up five popular tourist destinations in the country for foreign visitors to visit without quarantine.

The government said that foreigners who have either been fully vaccinated or recovered from Covid-19, can visit the five destinations starting this month.

The Vn Express said that the move comes after Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh approved the pilot plan by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

The plan will be carried out in three phases, with the first phase allowing foreign travellers to visit designated places in Vietnam’s biggest island Phu Quoc, Da Nang City, Quang Nam Province which is home to the ancient town of Hoi An, Khanh Hoa Province which is home to Nha Trang beach town, and Quang Ninh Province home to Ha Long Bay.

Authorities said that travellers must show proof of full vaccination or Covid-19 recovery, as well as a negative coronavirus test done within 72 hours before departure.

Only test results done using RT-LAMP or RT–PCR methods will be accepted.

Visitors will also need to have a medical or travel insurance that includes coverage for Covid-19 treatment worth at least US$50,000 and must book a package tour.

Children under 12 years old travelling with a parent or guardian do not require a certificate of vaccination against Covid-19.

They must also install the contact tracing IGOVN application on their smartphones and use it during their tours in Vietnam.

Although there is no quarantine requirement, visitors will be tested on the first day of arrival using a rapid antigen test and if the result is positive, they will be taken to a medical facility and the cost will be borne by the insurance company or the tour operators.

Authorities said that foreigners who want to see their families in Vietnam can register with the tour operators to do so.

The second phase of the plan is expected to take effect in January next year and it will allow tourists to travel between the five destinations allowed in the first phase.

The Express said that the third phase will see Vietnam fully reopen to foreign visitors.

However, a detailed timeline will depend on the pandemic situation in the country.

And now here is Vietnam tourism video for your viewing…

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: Are you looking forward to the 31st SEA Games now that it has a finalized set of dates for the organizing? What is the one sport you are looking forward to watch in the Hanoi SEA Games? Are you interested to visit Vietnam anytime soon?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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