SOS: foreign tourists are swindled by falsified websites

VietNamNet Bridge – Many Vietnamese individuals and institutions have assumed big travel firms’ names to cheat foreign tourists. Meanwhile, a real travel company is considering suing these impostors in court.

Sabine Lorenz and Karin Hildegard Dusold, two German tourists, heard about the beauty of Vietnam’s Ha Long Bay from relatives and decided to make a trip to Vietnam. They booked a tour to visit with the five-star Paradise Cruise in August on However, after the tourists made their payments, they received a notice that the five-star Paradise Cruise ran out of rooms and they were asked to travel with another cruise service.

After that, they realized that a company located at No 68 Hang Bo Street, Hanoi had assumed Paradise Cruise’s name and cheated the two German tourists.

Another traveler, French Christian Prestaut, thought that he successfully booked a tour with Paradise Cruise for a trip to Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. He paid a deposit worth $1500 through (total expenses for the trip were $4986). However, after depositing the payment, the traveler realized that a man named Tony Bui created the false website. Mr. Bui lives at Room 514, F4, Trung Hoa Residential Quarter in Cau Giay District, Hanoi.

Nguyen Cao Son, Marketing and Sales Director for Tuan Chau Paradise Cruise, said that his company has received many complaints from clients. The clients said they paid for five-star cruise services, but they were then forced to travel with low-quality cruises.

“After learning about the facts, we realized that we are also victims. Some companies and individuals have assumed our names to cheat clients,” Son said.

According to Son, the address of his company’s website is and the company has a certificate on trademark registration from the National Office of Intellectual Property (NOIP). However, to date, at lease eight websites with similar names have been created, creating misunderstandings for travelers. A lot of foreign travelers book tours on these false websites, which explains why they receive such low-quality service.

“We believe that individuals and institutions deliberately create misunderstanding, because on the false websites, they provide information similar to the information on our official website, while changing the information about physical addresses to contact and emails to book seats,” Son said.

He went on to say that his company is considering bringing this case to court in order to protect the Vietnamese tourism industry’s image in the eyes of international tourists.

While talking to Dau tu newspaper, Lawyer Nguyen Hoan Thanh from Thanh and Associates Law Office, said that there are clear signs of intellectual property law violations, but it would be not easy to remove the addresses and domains of the websites that falsify Paradise Cruises’ name.

“If Paradise Cruises can point to the institutions and individuals who deliberately violated the laws, the company can take legal proceedings against these individuals and institutions and sue for damages,” Thanh said.

According to Thanh, if the domain of the websites is “ .vn”, the company will be able to sue the individuals and institutions and ask to remove the websites. However, if the domains are “.com” or “ .org,” the company will have to ask for the removal through ICANN, the institution that supervises domain names. The institution will make a decision on whether to stop the operation of domains that create such great misunderstandings.

Meanwhile, analysts have called on institutions and relevant agencies to take the necessary actions to stop the falsification of tourism websites, saying that this is one of the reasons to explain why many foreign tourists do not intend to return to Vietnam after their first trip.

The eight falsified websites:

Source: Dau tu


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