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General travel tips for first – visit Vietnam

Everything will be perfect if you have careful preparation and so does traveling. This article brings you some general travel tips for those visiting Vietnam for the first time. Hope that it helps.

BEFORE DEPARTURE:

– Make sure that your passport is valid at least six months beyond your intended stay in Vietnam and apply Vietnam visa at least 1 week prior to departure. If you live far away from Vietnam embassy, visa on arrival is the best solution. Some recommended websites: vietnamvisa.org.vn; myvietnamvisa.com; etc.

– You should have local cash to use in Vietnam for your convenience. Try to get familiar with local currencies: 10,000; 20,000; 50,000; 100,000; 200,000; 500,000 VND notes. Although Vietnam government issues coin, it is rarely used.

– Should buy travel insurance prior to departure. Note that the standard of local health facilities is below international standards.

– Prepare costume suitable with weather in each part of Vietnam. The winter in the north is much colder than the south and the central while summer in the central is the hottest. May to November signals the monsoon season, and the weather is humid and warm

– Should know some national holidays, especially the lunar New Year since some places/services such as restaurant, shops, and public offices might be closed during these days and you should have a plan in advance.

DURING JOURNEY IN VIETNAM:

– Transportation: you can rent a car from a travel agency (such as EVIVA TOUR) or use taxi for your safe. The taxi fare is slightly different between taxi providers. Some trusty taxis for your reference: in Hanoi: Taxi Group 04.3853 5353, in Ho Chi Minh City: Taxi Mai Linh 08.38 29 8888.

– It is easy to get lost in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Do not worry since the Vietnamese is friendly. You can ask them in English and try to speak loudly and slowly.

– Keeping cards, cash and passports in a hotel or be especially vigilant in crowded touristy areas and at bus and train stations.

– Bring the business card of hotel in which you stay to contact in urgencies

– When crossing the road in big cities (Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City), always keep looking to the left and right and walk slowly. You will know how adventurous and exciting it is.

Author: Phuong Dong

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