MeKong Delta Tours -Vietnam Tour Operator specializing in MeKong Tours and Travel Services
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Vietnam Traveller's Fast Questions and Answers

1/ Where is Vietnam location ?
2/ How to go to Vietnam ?
3/ What places to see in Vietnam ?
4/ How many international border gate in Vietnam ? ( with China, Laos, Cambodia )
5/ How to get Visa to Vietnam ? Visa on arrival ?
6 / World heritage sites in Vietnam
7/ Taxi/bus from airports to cities/towns
8/ How many day to visit Vietnam ?
9/ What is the everage tour cost for a package tour in Vietnam ?
10/ How is the traffic in Vietnam ? It is safe when travelling by bike or motobike ? Driving Licences ?
11/ How is organise bike tour in Vietnam ?
12/ What is we should bring when taking your bike tour ?
13/ What is currency and how to exchange money Vietnam ? How to use Credit/Debit Cards and Where are ATMs ?
14 Homestay tour in Vietnam ?
15/ How about boat cruise and overnight Halong bay ?
16/ How is the road condition in the northern par of Vietnam ? How about the climate in Vietnam for travelling ?
17/ My Cell phone can use in Vietnam ?
18/ How should i bring clothes and shoes when travelling or trekking in Vietnam ?
19/ Can i book the cheap room rate in Vietnam from 25USD to 30USD ?
20/ Learning Vietnamese with our tour guide ? Vietnamese Language Centers ?
21/ How to travel to Cambodia via mekong delta ?
22/ How to crossing border to Laos ?
23/ How to get Visa to China in Vietnam ? Bus from Hanoi to Nanning
24/ How to get Visa to Cambodia in Vietnam ? Borders crossing between Vietnam and Cambodia
25/ How to get Visa to Laos in Vietnam ?
26/ Do you have contact office in Cambodia ?
27/ Do you have contact office in Laos ?
28/ Where to do trekking in Vietnam ?
29/ What is we should bring when trekking in Vietnam ?
30/ I am a Muslim, , is it easy to find halal food ?
31 / Where to get Vegetarians Food ?
32 / Vietnamese Food and restaurant ?
33/ Where to go if  travelling with kids ?
34/ How do we book the tour, on internet or come to your office? How to pay ?
35/ Do you have office in Ho chi Minh city? Can we book tour when we arrive HCM city or too late?
36/ How do we purchased domestic air tickets ?
37/ On the tour, does hotel provide the breakfast ?
38/ Hoi An Tailors for Women's Clothing ?
39/ How many days should be spent in Hanoi ? and Hochiminh city ?
40 / How many days should be spent in Sapa? What to do in Sapa ?
41 / What is your phone number in urgent case when travelling with us ?
42 / Do you arrange the honeymoon in vietnam?
43 / How to make the payment ? do you accept the Visa or travellers check ?
44/ Can you give us an indication of how much money we need to bring for our expenditures
45 / Can you arrange for us additional 2or 3 days stay in some SPA in Wietnam
46 / How safe is Vietnam?
47/ What level of comfort do the trains in Vietnam provide and how safe are they?
48 / Is it a good idea to take gifts to present in Vietnam? What would be appreciated ?
 

1/ Where is Vietnam location ?

Southeastern Asia, bordering the Gulf of Thailand, Gulf of Tonkin, and South China Sea, alongside China, Laos, and Cambodia

Region: Southeast Asia Capital: Hanoi

Coordinates: 21° 2" North, 105° 50" East

See more Vietnam City Guide Maps here

2/ How to go to Vietnam ?

Vietnam currently has three international airports: Noi Bai serving Hanoi in the north, Danang International Airport serving the central provinces and Tan Son Nhat in Ho Chi Minh City serving the south.

Available flights to Bangkok, Singapore, Paris, Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo, Sydney, Berlin, Jakarta, Manila, Taipei, Guangzhou, Kunming, Vientiane, Amsterdam, Moscow, Frankfurt, Kuala Lumpur, Los Angeles, Melbourne, Dubai, Osaka, Kaohsiung, and Phnom Penh.

Traveling by air - 3 international airport Hanoi ( Noibai airport) - Danang airport in the central - Hochiminh city ( Tan San Nhat airport )
There are 1 heliports in Viet Nam.

ROAD
From Cambodia: There is a road crossing at Moc Bai (Tay Ninh province 80km from Saigon) connecting Phnom Penh in Cambodia with Saigon. The new crossing into Cambodia via Chau Doc (245 km from Saigon) is passable either by boat or road.

From Laos: There is a road crossing at Lao Bao in Quang Tri Province, about 160km north of Hue, connecting Savannakhet with Central Vietnam. Another road into Vietnam is via Cau Treo, Ha Tinh Province.

From China: There are 03 roads crossing at Ha Khau (Lao Cai Province), Dong Dang (Lang Son Province) and Mong Cai (Quang Ninh Province

Traveling by water
There are 17,702 Km of waterways in Viet Nam. The most important ports and harbours are in Da Nang, Hai Phong, Ho Chi Minh City.
Travel by boat from Phompenh Cambodia to ChauDoc town in Vietnam on the Mekong river.

Getting There by Rail

It is possible to cross into China by rail from Lao Cai to Kunming in the Yunnan province of China or through Lang Son to Nanning. There are trains from Beijing-Dong Dang-Hanoi and back. Contact Vietnam Railways (tel: (04) 942 2770; website: www.vr.com.vn) for details.

1. From Vietnam to LAOS

Hanoi - Vientiane: Vietnam Airlines, Lao Airlines (code share)
Hanoi - Luang Prabang: Vietnam Airlines, Lao Airlines
Sai Gon - Vientiane: Vietnam Airlines

2. From Vietnam to THAILAND

Hanoi - Bangkok: Vietnam Airlines, Thai Airways, Thai Air Asia, Nok Air, Air France, Lao Airlines (via Vientiane)
Sai Gon - Bangkok: Vietnam Airlines, Thai Airways, Thai Air Asia, Air France, Lufthansa, Bangkok Airways
Da Nang - Bangkok: PB Air

3. From Vietnam to CAMBODIA

Hanoi - Phnom Penh (via Vientiane): Vietnam Airlines, Lao Airlines
Hanoi - Siem Reap: Vietnam Airlines
Sai Gon - Siem Reap: Vietnam Airlines
Da Nang - Siem Reap: Silk Air (no opposite flight Siem Reap - Da Nang)

4. From Vietnam to MYANMAR

No direct flight. You must fly Hanoi - BKK, then connect your flight to Yangon on Thai Airways, Bangkok Airways or Air Asia. Another way is you fly to Chiang Mai, then connect your flight to Mandalay on Air Mandalay (once a week).

5. From Vietnam to MALAYSIA

Hanoi - LCCT in KL: Air Asia
Hanoi - KL int'l airport: Vietnam Airlines, Malaysia Airlines

6. From Vietnam to SINGAPORE

Hanoi - Singapore: Vietnam Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Tiger Airways
Sai Gon - Singapore: Vietnam Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Tiger Airways, Jet Star
Da Nang - Singapore: Tiger Airways
Singapore - Da Nang: Silk Air (on the way to Siem Reap)

7. From Vietnam to the PHILIPPINES

Hanoi - LCCT in KL - Clark: Air Asia
Sai Gon - Manila: Philippine Airlines

8. From Vietnam to INDONESIA

Hanoi - LCCT in KL - Denpasar: Air Asia
Sai Gon - Singapore - Denpasar/Yogyakarta: Garuda Indonesia

9. From Vietnam to BRUNEI

Hanoi - LCCT in KL - BSB (capital): Air Asia
Sai Gon - BSB (capital): Royal Brunei Airlines

3/ What places to see in Vietnam ?

Here is a list of sightseeing places in Vietnam , please choose what you want to see:

1. HANOI (many museums, lakes, parks, old French buildings. On 10 Oct 2010, Hanoi will celebrate the 1,000 year anniversary)
2. SAPA (mountain scenery, trekking to ethnic minority villages), BAC HA (Sunday morning market) CANCAU (Saturday morning market)
3. MAI CHAU - HOABINH (Thai ethnic minority villages)
4. SON LA – DIEN BIEN PHU (battle field where the French troops were defeated in 1954)
5. NINH BINH (rural life, caves, beautiful stone churches, Cuc Phuong national park)
6. HA LONG BAY (the world heritage, thousands of islands)
7. BA BE LAKE (240km from Hanoi, the largest lake in north VN)
8. PHONG NHA CAVE (the world heritage, near Dong Hoi, central VN)
9. HUE (the old capital of VN in the 19th century, visit the Imperial Citadel, tombs, cruise along the Perfume river)
10. DMZ (Vinh Moc tunnels, Ben Hai river - the place where Vietnam used to be divided into the North and the South for 21 years during American war, Khe Sanh combat base)
11. HOI AN (ancient streets, the world heritage)
12. MY SON (brick temples, the world heritage)
13. NHA TRANG (beaches, islands, scuba diving)
14. MUI NE near PHAN THIET (beaches, sand dunes)
15. DA LAT (highlands, cool weather, waterfalls and lakes)
16. CENTRAL HIGHLANDS (Gia Lai - Kon Tum - Dak Lak, special culture, best coffee)
17. SAI GON (the most developed city, night life)
18. MEKONG DELTA (floating villages & markets, nice beach in Ha Tien)
19. CU CHI TUNNELS (American War)
20. PHU QUOC ISLAND (beaches, fishing villages)

4/ How many international border gate in Vietnam ? ( with China, Laos, Cambodia )

ROAD
From Cambodia: There is a road crossing at Moc Bai (Tay Ninh province 80km from Saigon) connecting Phnom Penh in Cambodia with Saigon. The new crossing into Cambodia via Chau Doc (245 km from Saigon) is passable either by boat or road.

From Laos: There is a road crossing at Lao Bao in Quang Tri Province, about 160km north of Hue, connecting Savannakhet with Central Vietnam. Another road into Vietnam is via Cau Treo, Ha Tinh Province.

From China: There are 03 roads crossing at Ha Khau (Lao Cai Province), Dong Dang (Lang Son Province) and Mong Cai (Quang Ninh Province

Traveling by water
There are 17,702 Km of waterways in Viet Nam. The most important ports and harbours are in Da Nang, Hai Phong, Ho Chi Minh City.

5/ How to get Visa to Vietnam ? Visa-on-arrival ?

Most visitors to Vietnam need a visa to enter the country. Visas are exempted for the citizens of the countries, which have signed a bilateral or unilateral visa exemption agreement with Vietnam, tourist visa may be valid for 15 to 30 days.

Some people have mistaken a "Visa-on-arrival" with a "Pre-arranged visa" for Vietnam. There is no "Visa-on-arrival" for Vietnam, unless you are exempted from it as I said above and get a stamp upon arrival at the international airport in Vietnam. In case you don't want to or cannot apply for a visa at the Vietnamese Embassies or Consulates for some reasons (for example, no Vietnamese Embassy in your country), you can apply for a visa through our agent in Vietnam. We will get an approval letter for you, so that the airlines will allow you to get on board. Upon arrival at the international airport in Vietnam, the immigration officers will stamp the visa into your passport. This service is called a "Pre-arranged visa" Certainly, We will charge you some dollars for the service.

Click here to see the visa procedure to Vietnam >>>>

6 / World heritage sites in Vietnam

World heritage sites in Vietnam

As of 2007, there are 5 UNESCO world heritage sites located in northern and central Vietnam, and 2 intangible world heritages. Following is some basic information:

UNESCO WORLD NATURAL HERITAGE SITES

1. Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh province - (recognized in December 1994)

Ha Long Bay is made of 1,969 islands of various sizes, 989 of which have been given names. There are 2 kinds of islands, limestone and schist, which are concentrated in 2 main zones: the South East (belonging to Bai Tu Long Bay) and the South West (belonging to Ha Long Bay). This densely concentrated zone of stone islands, world famous for its spectacular scenery of grottoes and caves.

2. Phong Nha - Ke Bang National Park in Quang Binh province - (recognized in July 2003)

Phong Nha - Ke Bang national park (200,000 ha) is one of the world's two largest limestone regions which includes beautiful limestone formations, grottoes and caves.

Phong Nha caves (over 30 caves and total discovered length of 100km) has the longest underground rivers, the largest caverns and passageways, the widest and prettiest sand banks, and the most astonishing rock formations in the world.

UNESCO WORLD CULTURAL HERITAGE SITES

3. Hue Imprerial City in central Vietnam (recognized in December 1993)

Hue served as Vietnam's political capital from 1802 to 1945 under the 13 emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty. Hue's attractions are the splendid toms of the Nguyen emperors, several notable pagodas and the remains of the Imperial Citadel.

4. Hoi An Ancient Town - 30km south of Da Nang city (recognized in December 1999)

The ancient town of Hoi An used to be occupied by early western traders and became one of the major trading centers of South East Asia in the 16th century. It has a distinct Chinese atmosphere with low, tile-roofed houses made of wood and narrow streets.

5. My Son Sanctuary - 69km southwest of Da Nang city (recognized in December 1999)

My Son used to be an imperial city during the Cham dynasty from the 4th to the 12th centuries. It is a large complex of religious relics that comprises more than 70 architectural towers of red brick which were built to reflect the divinity of the king.

INTANGIBLE HERITAGES (Unesco Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritages of Humanity)

6. The royal music in Hue - (recognized in November 2003).

7. The gong (Cong Chieng) in the Central Highlands - (recognized in November 2005).

7 / Taxi/bus from airports to cities/towns ?

This post was updated in July 2008 thanks to the help of some TTers.

1. HANOI: From Noi Bai airport to the Old Quarter (30km):
by Noi Bai taxi (tel 8868888): VND 270,000 (US$15)

by 15-seat mini bus of Vietnam Airlines: US$2 from the airport to Vietnam Airlines Head Office at No. 1 Quang Trung St. From there you can walk to the Old Quarter.

by public bus: first you get bus No. 7 (yellow & red color) VND 5,000 from Noi Bai airport to Cau Giay, then change into bus No. 9 (VND 3,000) from Cau Giay to Bo Ho (Hoan Kiem lake in Hanoi center). From there you can walk to the Old Quarter. The total costs for both bus trips would be VND 8,000 (or 50 US cents).

2. HUE: From Phu Bai airport to Hue city (13km)

Taxi: US$10

3. HOI AN: From Da Nang airport to Hoi An town (30km)

Taxi: about US$15.

4. NHA TRANG: From Cam Ranh airport to Nha Trang (about 30-40km)

(Note: Nha Trang airport was closed some years ago. You will fly to/from Cam Ranh airport which is located about 30-40km south of Nha Trang)

Taxi: VND 200,000 (US$13) for a 4-seat taxi, VND 230,000 (US$14) for a 7-seat taxi.
Transfer from the Cam Ranh airport to Nha Trang City (and return): A shuttle bus is operated in connection with every Vietnam Airlines flight. Expect VND 26.000 (US$1.8) per person to reach the old airport of Nha Trang. From there you will be able to go on foot (800 m) to the hotels by the sea. Taxis also wait on arrival of the shuttle bus. After having dropped passengers at the old air terminal, the bus carries on its way and goes to the major hotels in the town. The charge is VND 35.000 (about US$2) per person then. A service of taxi (at offficially fixed price) also exists between the Cam Ranh airport and Nha Trang city: cost is VND 170.000 (US$10) for a regular 4-seat taxi OR VND 230.000 (US$14) for a 7-seat taxi. It takes 45min for a taxi ride.

5. Hochiminh city : From Tan Son Nhat airport to the Backpacker area (Pham Ngu Lao St, Dist 1)

Taxi: VND 90,000 (about US$6), it takes about 25 minutes.

NOTE

Be careful with the fake taxis in the large cities as they will overcharge you.
Don't take the offer from taxi drivers or touts, who want to take you to their hotels.
You can easily find a taxi/bus ticket counter in the arrival hall.
You also can book in advance with your hotel for a pick up.

8 /How long to visit Vietnam ?

Most of tourists visit Vietnam for the period of 14 days or 10 days for general view, the period may longer if you wish to discover the north west , north est or central highland of Vietnam.

tour will starting from Hanoi or Hochiminh city. Tour ended in Hanoi or Chi Minh city.

Hanoi - Ha Long Bay - Cat Ba island (book 2-3 day tours, OR go by yourself, one way Hanoi - Ha Long Bay - Cat Ba with tourist company by bus and boat, stay on Cat Ba island, exploring beaches, cave, jungle, fishing villages, then take express boat Cat Ba - Hai Phong and by train/bus Hai Phong - Hanoi.

Hanoi - Lao Cai overnight train (or by bus but it takes a long time), then 30km by bus to Sapa. You should spend 2 nights on train, 2 days for trekking. From Sapa to Bac Ha by bus, about 60km.

Hanoi - Ninh Binh: by train, by tourist bus, or you can rent a car from Hanoi

Hanoi - Mai Chau: 2 day tour, or by bus

Hanoi - Hue: overnight train, by tourist bus or flight

Hanoi - Da Nang: overnight train, by tourist bus or flight

Hue - Hai Van Pass - Da Nang - Hoi An: by train, or by tourist bus, or by taxi (through pass or through tunnel)

Da Nang - Nha Trang: by train, by tourist bus or flight

Nha Trang - Da Lat: by tourist bus

Nha Trang - Sai Gon: by train, by tourist bus or flight

Da Lat - Sai Gon: by tourist bus, or flight

Sai Gon - Mekong Delta: 1-2-3 day tours, or by local bus

Here is my suggestions for your trip (in case you want to see all 3 regions):

10 days or 2 weeks

1-2 days in Hanoi
2 days in Ha Long Bay
Overnight train Hanoi to Hue
1 day in Hue
Bus Hue to Hoi An (4 hours)
Hoi An 1-2 days
Fly Da Nang - Sai Gon (evening flight) US$ 75
Cu Chi tunnels (half day or 1 day)
Mekong Delta (1-2 day tour)

3 weeks

3 weeks in Vietnam:

1. Ha Noi
2. Ha Long Bay
3. Ninh Binh
(May replace or add Sapa if you like trekking)

Overnight train or flight Hanoi - Hue US$52 one way

4. Hue
5. DMZ

Bus Hue - Hoi An (4 hours)

6. Hoi An - My Son Cham towers (May add Nha Trang/Mui Ne for beach)

Flight Da Nang - Sai Gon US$75 one way

7. Sai Gon
8. Mekong Delta
9. Cu Chi tunnel

You can add or skip places if you like.

9 / What is the everage tour cost for a package tour in Vietnam ?

Our tour cost not included the flight in /out Vietnam. We just provide the landtour in Vietnam only, package tour cost normally included accomodations, tranportation, local tour guide speaking englisht or french, food, entrances fees, domestic flights or train tickets, boat trip. Cost is varied from 700 USD up to 3000USD, it depend on the length of stay and hotels standard. Please contact us now for free advise and plan tour in Vietnam.

10/ How is the traffic in Vietnam ? It is safe when travelling by bike or motobike ?

In the cities

The traffic can be a nightmare for visitors to Viet Nam for the first time. Believe it or not, there are transport rules but people don't seem really interested in following them. Three or four people on one motor bike is a common sight, particularly with the young and young families.

The traffic is worst during the rush hour when everyone is attempting to get to work or get home quickly. Some people ride their motorbikes on the pavement rather than waiting in the a traffic jam. The people walking are just as likely to get hit on the pavement as they are crossing the roads at such times. It's crazy. Road users become very impatient, constantly using their horns when there's obviously nowhere to go, even shouting at others to get out of the way. You have to be quite aggressive or you get nowhere.

Outside cities

But is safe for travelling by bike outside of big city like Hanoi, Danang and Hochiminh city. Our bike tour journey has choosed the good road with beatiful landscape that you will enjoy so much when cycling

For motobike , just for adventurer only, you will need more experienced and good skill with professtional tour guide.

Driving Licences

It is illegal in Vietnam to drive without a licence. An Interational Driving Permit is acceptable. Make sure it is endorsed for motorbikes. To legally drive in VN you are legally required to carry:

1. an IDP or VN licence
2. the moto registration papers
3. moto insurance papers
4. identification (ID card for locals or passport for you)

Police most of the time will not bother you, but from time to time they have a blitz and will suddenly start stopping EVERY foreigner driving a bike and checking for the above documents.

Don't even THINK about driving a car in Vietnam. The police really don't want you to, for your own good.

11/ How is organise bike tour in Vietnam ?

During the trip, we provide the escorted minibus, just cycle as much or as little as you like since we have the van with us for most of the time except for some parts of the trip due to small ferry.

Everyday, you will ride around 30 - 40 - 60 km or more on the flat road or mountain road. it depend on your capability. We have support van and tour guide follows you in case you are tired or preparing bikes.

12/ What is we should bring when taking your bike tour ?

You can bring to Vietnam the following :

1. Bike Helmet
2. Small backpack
3. Shoes and shorts for cylcing
4. Sunglasses
5. Gloves
6. Professtional Pedal

See our support van or bikes

13/ What is currency and how to exchange money Vietnam ? How to use Credit/Debit Cards and Where are ATMs ?

Currency
Dông (VND; symbol ). Notes are in denominations of 500,000, 200,000, 100,000, 50,000, 20,000, 10,000, 5,000, 2,000, 1,000, 500, 200 and 100. Coins are in denominations of 5,000, 2,000, 1,000 and 500.

Currency Exchange
The US Dollar is the most favoured foreign currency. Australian, British, Japanese, Singaporean and Thai currency, as well as the Euro, can usually be changed in the larger cities; great difficulty may be encountered in trying to exchange any other currencies. There is a commission charge for changing money in banks.

Note : you may do an exchange US Dollar at the jewllery shops in Hanoi and Hochiminh city
Credit/Debit Cards and ATMs

An increasing number of outlets accept MasterCard and Visa. However, outside main towns and cities, it is wise to carry cash. There are ATMs in many major towns , but not everywhere.

ATMs are available in Hanoi , Halong bay, Dien Bien Phu, SonLa, CaoBang, LangSon , HaiPhong, Thai Binh, Thanh Hoa , Vinh, Hue, HoiAn old town, Danang , Nhatrang, CamRanh, Dalat, Kontum, Buon Ma Thuot, Hochiminh city, CanTho, ChauDoc, HaTien, CaMau..

Traveller's Cheques
These are widely accepted in hotels and banks. To avoid additional exchange ratecharges, travellers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars.
Currency Restrictions
Restrictions apply.

Banking Hours
Mon-Fri 0730/0800-1130 and 1300-1600.

Exchange Rate Indicators ( July 2008 )

1 USD = 16.800 VND , 1 £ = 33.455VND , 1 € = 26.000VND

The exchange bureau are availale at the airport in Hanoi, Hochiminh city

14/ Homestay tour in Vietnam ?

You will eat, sleep and learn about living activities at residents’ homes where you come during your homestay tours. This kind of tour is for those who like discovering, experiencing and learn about customs and practice of various cultures.

You will feel like returning to nature and experience interesting things of simple life. Homestay tourism has developed in Mai Chau of Hoa Binh northern province, In the centre of Vietnam, we do offer overnight at homestay in HoiAn town or in Hue. Buon Me Thuot in the Central Highlands, Sapa, PhongTho and some provinces in the Mekong River Delta like Vinh Long, CanTho

Mai Chau, about 135 kilometres from Hanoi and about 60 kilometres from Hoa Binh town, the capital of Hoa Binh province. From Cun Mount Peak, you can have an overview of Mai Chau set in green valleys and stilted houses of ethnic minority people. The stilted houses are quite large. They are roofed with palm trees and their floors are made with bamboo. Tourists will stay at one of these houses.

In Mai Chau, you can join trekking tours around villages and exchange with ethnic minority people through festivals with traditional dances and gong music.

In the Mekong River delta, homestay tour is also one of tourists’ favourites. Now, we often choose the Mekong River delta ( Vinh Long , CanTho )to introduce to tourists.

The reason is that tourists have more information about this region and they particularly like learning about life of residents in the river region. They like travelling by boat, calling at handcraft villages, doing the garden work and making cakes with the locals.”

The Mekong River delta promises to be an attractive place for a large number of tourists in the future. Homestay tours in the river delta are suitable for tourists who do not have much time to travel.

Homestay tours are not new but you should discover yourselves. You can design these tours by contact us now

15/ How about boat cruise and overnigh in Halong bay ?

Travel to Halong Bay with your family, friend group or even 2 of you who want to spend a quiet time together? Private boat cruise maybe the good option. Our private boat with comfortable facilities, friendly and professional trained staffs, affordable price will definately brings you unforgetable time in World heritage of Halong bay.

Most of boats in Halong bay are wooden boat, buitl on the tradtional style, the overnight boat in Halong bay are equiped from 2 to 10 rooms with toilet inside, there is a twin or double room, all the boat have restaurant, you can order foods, drinks during your stay in Halong bay. We do provide overnight tour in Halong from 2 to 5 days.

See more photos and boat picture in Halong at our website www.halongtours.com

16/ How is the road condition in the northern par of Vietnam ? How about the climate in Vietnam for travelling ?

In genreral, you can travel by car or landcruiser to all parts of Vietnam, except the rainning season to avoid the landslide.

Travelling through Vietnam, you will notice a big difference in climate between the north and the south. In the north the raining season starts in july august, end in september.The south of Vietnam ( Ho Chi Minh City) is near the equator, so It has two season: raining and dry season. The raining season stars around: March to October and The dry season from November to April. During the raining season it rain nearly every day but just for haft an hour to one hour and then shining again.

The best time to visit Vietnam ( Also the tourist season for westerner) is between August to April when the weather tend to be good in both North and South.

17/ My Cell phone can use in Vietnam ?

Sure! you can use your cell phone in Vietnam , and use pre-paid card to call, you buy an other pre-paid card for your callings, simcard cost 50.000, calling card 100.000VND, oversea call rate 7000VNd/minute. You can buy a Vinaphone , Mobile phone , Viettel simcard any where in Vietnam.

18/ How should i bring clothes and shoes when travelling or trekking in Vietnam ?

In Vietnam, there is a difference of climate in the norht and the south, especially in the winter. You should bring warm clothes when travelling in the north of Vietnam from November to March. In the centre ( Hoian ) and south Vietnam ( Saigon, Nhatrang, Mekong ) , the climate around 25 °C to 33°C , just need to bring summer clothes.

Annual temperature for Sa Pa town is 15.4°C, with a maximum of 29.4°C and a minimum of 1°C. The warmest months are July and August, and the coldest months are December and January. Snow falls in some years on the highest peaks.

19/ Can i book the cheap room rate in Vietnam from 25USD to 30USD ?

Yes, you can send us any request for hotels booking around Vietnam, just come to our hotels website www.vietnamhotels.biz or send an email with request for numer of rooms, hotel location, lenthg of stay. Our travel consultant will suggest you the most convenient hotels as your budget

20/ Learning Vienamese with our tour guide ?

Travelling to Vietnam, you may find it neccessary to learn the language in oder to understand the people here and to use all the services well. Our tour guide may help you to learn Vietnamese during your trip in Vietnam.

Here is info about Vietnamese Language Centers in the Timeout Guide to Hanoi and HCMC:

HANOI:

Vietnamese Language Center

1. No. 1, Pham Ngu Lao St., Tel: 8262468

2. No. 20 Lang Ha St., Tel: 7761123

HCMC:

1. Lassho Vietnamese Language School for Foreigners
No. 8, Mac Dinh Chi St., Dist 1, Tel: 8233816

2. Sai Gon Vietnamese Language School
No. 41 Dinh Tien Hoang St., Ben Nghe ward, District 1, HCMC
Tel: 84-8-8251027

21 / How to travel to Cambodia via mekong delta ?

The new crossing into ChauDoc (245 km from Saigon) to Phnompenh Cambodia is passable either by boat - Ticket cost around 30USD for hydrofoil, taking 4 -5 hours from 8h00Am in ChauDoc - Arrival time 13h00. You may applly visa on arrival at the border to Cambodia - cost 20USD

22/ How to crossing border to Laos ?

From Hanoi the daily bus to Vientiane , passing Cau Treo border.
Takes about 20 hours and departs everyday at 7 PM..

There is a border crossing into Laos in Hatinh (Cautreo Border). You can catch the bus from HN to Ha tinh easily (340km) and then go to Cau treo border by bus (120km). From border to vientiane distance about 200km.

From Hue or Danang, you can take the bus to Xavanakhet crossing LaoBao border gate. You should have visa in advance , can not get visa at the border. Visa on arrival just available at the airport. Good trip to you.

23/ How to get Visa to China in Vietnam ?

If you are in Vietnam , you may come to Chinesse embassy in Hanoi or contact our office for Visa services - Visa cost from 45USD for normal case .

Bus from Hanoi to Nanning

In the message above, Aoga posted some information about the direct bus from Nanning to Hanoi. I have seen a post about the direct bus from Hanoi to Nanning and kept the telephone number. Today I called the agent and below is some information.

Kim Lien Hotel
7 Dao Duy Anh Street, Hanoi
Tel: 0084-4-5770434 (if you are in Hanoi, call 5770434)
Or: 0084-25-716077 (this tel is in Lang Son or Dong Dang town)

The bus leaves Kim Lien Hotel in Hanoi at 8:30am or 9:20am daily, and arrives in Nanning at 4:00pm or 5:00pm. You will change the bus at the border.

Ticket costs (US$20 ) one way.

Now it's easy to travel between Hanoi and Nanning without hassles. Previously we had to go from Hanoi - Lang Son - Dong Dang - Friendship Gate - Pingxiang - Nanning by bus, train.

24/ How to get Visa to Cambodia in Vietnam ? international border crossings between Vietnam and Cambodia

If you are in Vietnam , you should contact Cambodia Embassy in Hanoi or get visa on arrival are avaiblabe at border or airport. - bring with you 2 photos passport size. Visa cost 20USD .

• International airport tax departure Phnompenh and Siemreap: US$25

Below is the list of the international border crossings between Vietnam and Cambodia that were open. Any advice or up-to-date info would be welcome. Please also use the "search" function to find the latest trip reports posted by TTers.

1. MOC BAI (Tay Ninh province, 70km from HCMC) - BAVET crossing (Cambodia VoA: Yes)

2. XA MAT (Tay Ninh province) - TRAPAING PHLONG crossing (opened in Jan 06)

3. TINH BIEN (An Giang province, 25km from Chau Doc) - PHNOM DEN crossing (Cambodia VoA: Yes, US$25, confirmed on Dec 23, 2007)

4. VINH XUONG (An Giang province, 30km from Chau Doc) - KAAM SAMNOR crossing (river crossing / Cambodia VoA: No)

5. XA XIA (near Ha Tien town) - PREK CHAK crossing (Cambodia VoA: Yes, US$25)

6. LE THANH (near Pleiku, Gia Lai province) - O'YADAO (Ban Lung, Ratanakiri province) crossing (Cambodia VoA: Yes) open in Dec 07

25/ How to get Visa to Laos in Vietnam ?

If you are in Vietnam , contact our office in Hanoi or Laos Embassy - if you take a flight to Laos , you can get visa upon on your arrival at Vientiane or Luangprabang airport - bring with you 2 photos passport size. Visa on arrival cost 30USD .

26/ Do you have contact office in Cambodia ?

Yes, we have travel agent in Phnompenh and Siemreap - We will send you more contact details if you are taking our tour to Vietnam Cambodia

27/ Do you have contact office in Laos ?

Yes, we have travel agent office in Vientiane, Luangprabang and parkse in Laos - We will send you more contact details if you are taking our tour to Vietnam Laos

28/ Where to do trekking in Vietnam ?

We have compiled a list of hiking and trekking tours in Vietnam. If you are interested in any of these hiking and trekking tours and vacations

- Sapa Town 's picturesque mountains and colorful hill tribes, this is the best place to do trekking - see more tours or information on website www.sapatours.com

- Pu Luong (near Hanoi) is with outstanding beauty and renowned biodiversity, as a lowland limestone forest ecosystem covered by rich tropical forest, stunning panoramas and beautiful rice paddies.

- Maichau - Hoabinh, on the bank of Ma River to experience the everyday life and culture of White Thai, Muong people

.- CaoBang - near chinesse border , north est of Vietnam

- Catba island near Halong bay - trekking from National park to Viethai village

- Babe lake - trekking to see Tay village

- Cuc Phuong National Park in NinhBinh ( 130km from Hanoi ) , and relaxing with an overnight rest in a traditional stilt home.

- Cat Tien National park - 5hours drive from Hochiminh city

- Kontum and river dafting in the Central highland of Vietnam

29/ What is we should bring when trekking in Vietnam ?

Valid passport: your passport must be valid for at least six months after your date of departure from Vietnam.

We do recommend lightweight trail shoes or even running shoes. The best qualities to look for in choosing shoes to bring to Vietnam

* Camera + Recording device and blank tapes

* Sunglasses with hard case
* Flashlight
* Extra batteries (for camera, tape recorder and flashlight)
* Second pair of eye glasses (if you need your eye glasses on a daily basis)

- Aspirin, Tylenol, Aleve or something similar
- Personal medications (anything you normally take at home and any precautionary items such as migraine medications, if you are prone to that).
- Cold medicine
- Allergy medicine
- Anti-diarrhea medicine (e.g., Immodium and an antibiotic)

Warm jacket. Fiber fill or down should be adequate. This is especially necessary during winter from December to February in Sapa area

30/ I am a Muslim, , is it easy to find halal food ?
If you are planning to visit Vietnam but don't know where to go for halal food then please check out these places: (We are in the process of compiling this list, please have patience with us)

South Vietnam

You need a local Muslim to take you to these places (just ask the Imam from the Dong Du Mosque for assistance):

66 Dong Du, District 1: Indian, Vietnamese cuisine. This mosque has a halal food court where you can buy lunch or dinner. Many Muslim foreigners come here to eat.
26 Bui vien, District 1: Indian, Pakistani.
45 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia: Malay, Indo cuisine.
459B Tran Hung Dao: Pho (noodle).
94/4A Huynh Van Banh (near fashion shop of Ms.Basiroh): Budget food.
52 Nguyen Van Troi: Goat Cari (cari de).

An Giang
Café Vila, 25 Nguyen Huu Canh, Chau Doc town.
phone: 867129; Indian food

North Vietnam

53 Ba Trieu, Hanoi.
10 Hang Thung, Hanoi.
Nisa Restaurant: 90 Nguyen Huu Huan: Malay and Indian cuisine.

31 / Where to get Vegetarians Food ?

Food for Vegetarians

Tôi ãn chay = I'm a vegetarian

Based on the Timeout Guide to Hanoi and HCM City:

Hanoi:

1. Com Chay Nang Tam: 79A Tran Hung Dao st., (tel: 9424140)
2. Dakshin: 94 Hang Trong st., (tel: 9286872)
3. Adida: 37 Nguyen Khac Nhu st.,(tel: 9272430)

HCM City:

1. Com Chay Nang Tam: 384/40, Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, ward 8, Ditrict 3 (tel: 8483874)
2. Hoa Mai restaurant: Rex Hotel, 141 Nguyen Hue st., District 1 (tel: 8292185)
3. Tib restaurant: 187 Hai Ba Trung st., District 3 (tel: 8297242)

32 / Vietnamese Food and restaurant ?

Regional Cuisine

Cuisine in this country of 80,000,000 people differs strikingly between the north, south and central regions, but two key features stand out. First, rice plays an essential role in the nation's diet as it does throughout southeast Asia. But this is also a noodle-crazy population, regularly downing them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, in homes, restaurants and at roadside stands. Noodles are eaten wet and dry, in soup or beside soup, and are made in different shapes and thicknesses of wheat, rice and mung beans. Secondly, no meal is complete without fresh vegetables and herbs. A key portion of every meal, north, south and central, is a platter containing cucumbers, bean threads, slices of hot pepper, and sprigs of basil, coriander, mint and a number of related herbs found principally in southeast Asian markets.

As in any country, Vietnam's cuisine reflects its geography and history. Geographically, it consists of two great river deltas separated by a belt of mountains. Vietnamese describe their country as two great rice baskets hung on either end of a carrying pole. The Red River Delta surrounding Hanoi provides rice for the residents of North Vietnam. The tremendously fertile Mekong Delta, centered by Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) produces rice plus a wide variety of fruits and vegetables both for itself and the central strip of the country whose principal city is the former imperial Hue.

Vietnamese Soup Customs

Soup is customarily served for breakfast in Vietnam--big bowls of steaming noodle soup, with meat and any number of ingredients added at the last minute, like bean sprouts, cilantro, basil, chili peppers, lime slices, and green onions. All, of course, spiced with with plenty of fish sauce (nuoc mam), chili-garlic sauce, and/or hoisin sauce in nearby dipping dishes. It's an unusual melange of cooked rice noodles, raw vegetables and herbs, and shaved raw meat or seafood that cooks in the broth just as it's brought to table.

Phó, as it's known, people line up at the doors of Phó restaurants night and day to sit at trencher tables and feast on the soup til sweat pours down the backs of their heads. The term phó translates as "your own bowl," since it's one of the few meals where the food is not passed around and shared.

"Small" soups, by contrast, are served as first courses--they generally don't have noodles; they're served in small portions; and they're called sup. The famous Sup Mang Tay, or Crab and Asparagus Soup is in this category--so is Sup Nam Trang, a fascinatingly complex soup of crab, shrimp, and dried white fungus (mushroomlike).

Finally, the class of soups known as Canh are generally served family style, out of one big bowl--often spooned into smaller bowls at table with rice. And they are generally light--also served as a first course to whet the appetite. These include Canh Sa Lach Soan (Watercress-Shrimp Soup), Canh Chua Tom (Hot and Sour Shrimp and Lemongrass Soup), and Canh Chua Ca (Hot and Sour Tamarind Fish Soup).

See the Vietnam Restaurant list

33/ Where to go if travelling with kids in Vietnam ?

In Hanoi, the Waterpuppets are an absolute must for any kid, whether you are 6 or 16 (or 66). The colourful puppets magically move criss-cross a small pond and make a lot of noise. Bet your parents find this cool too.

The Cuc Phuong National Park is a great jungle, but visit the 'Endangered Primate Rescue Centre' at the entrance first. This mini-zoo is home to a number of extremely rare monkeys. You may find the tropical showers during the rainy season exciting, but be aware that leeches (bloodsuckers) will be a problem at that time of the year.

Undoubtedly your parents want to show you all the old stuff in Hoi An. Remind them that the beach is nearby, about half an hour by bicycle. Another fun thing to do is a river boat trip in one of those very narrow sampans, step in carrrrrefulllly.

A snorkelling trip to the islands near Nha Trang is unforgettable. Bring your own snorkel set or buy one before you hop on the boat. Nha Trang also has the best beach in Vietnam, but mind the current, which can be particularly strong in the autumn. Never swim alone. For yet another great experience in Nha Trang get up at five o'clock in the morning, watch the sunrise plus a few thousand Vietnamese play badminton and do exercise.

Fancy sleeping in the Crazy House in Dalat? For a fairy-tale experience, ask your parents to book you in the Tiger room or any other theme-rooms of this weird mini-hotel. After waking up, visit the dusty summer palace of Vietnam’s last emperor Bao Dai and have your picture taken behind his desk (don’t smile).

To experience a Vietnamese amusement park, call on Dam Sen in Ho Chi Minh City, which has everything from old-fashioned merry-go-rounds to brand-new water slides. Outside of the city, there are also two big water parks, great on a sizzling-hot day. Bring lots of waterproof suntan lotion!

The underground Cu Chi Tunnels, close to Ho Chi Minh City, are a bit scary to some children, although most find them a real thrill. You’re lucky if you’re small, because so are the tunnels. Bring old clothes, for you’ll get dusty, and mosquito repellent.

34/ How do we book the tour, on internet or come to your office? How to pay ?

The reservation should be sent by fax, mail, or e-mail to:

Office in Hanoi Capital Vietnam :

Adventure Tours - Asia Pacific Travel
Add : 14 CUA BAC ST - BA DINH DIST - HANOI - VIETNAM
Tel : (84.4) 37568868 - 38364212

Fax : (84.4) 37567862

Hotline : + 84.9.1 3224473

Email : info@adventuretours.vn or pacifictravel@hn.vnn.vn

Office in Danang city - Vietnam :

Add: 79 Thanhlong St.,Haichau Dist, Danang City,Vietnam
Tel: (84.511) 3 286 088
Fax: (84.4) 37567862 /(84 511)3531897

Office in Hochiminh city - Vietnam :

Adventure tours in Hochiminh city

Address : 127 BanCo Str - District 3 , Hochiminh city
Tel : 84.8.38334083

The reservation is validated only if you have received a confirmation of Adventure Tours upon your payment of deposit.

Payment method

Bank credit transfer as well as expenses, which must be charged by the customer, are credited on the above account.

Credit card: [form of authorization-by Winword file - by Acrobat PDF file ]

For payment by credit card, 3% of expenses are charged by customer who has to fill in the form and make a copy of his credit card, then both documents must be faxed to the following number: (84.4) 7567862.

The form and photocopy of your passport must be sent to which are regarded as the final and legal proof of your payment for Adventure tours.


As the payment has been made, AdventureTours.vn will draw up a confirmation which is handed out to the customer when he is arrived in Vietnam.

 

35/ Do you have office in Ho chi Minh city? Can we book tour when we arrive HCM city or too late?

Our company head quater is located in Hanoi, the other 02 offices are located in Hochiminh City ( Saigon ) and Danang City.

You should confirm your tour booking by fax, mail or e-mail to us at least 10 working days before your arrival in Vietnam.

It's quite late if you book your trip when you arrive, some of services may be not available at that time, especially hotels rooms and flight tickets. In this case, we will try our best to arrange services for you base on their avaibilty. However the tour price for last minutes bookings are mostly higher than normal.

36/ How do we purchased domestic air tickets ?

 

38/ Hoi An Tailors for Women's or Man Clothing ?

Hoi An is surely the tailoring capital of the world with about 300 little shops crammed into its narrow streets - all selling more or less the same designs made from the same material.
The clothes shops in Hoi An make tailored clothes, you get measured for whatever garment you want, or have a copy made. You can collect the item within 1 day, have a fiting and go from there.

1) They are cheap - a suit for $30 anyone
2) They are fast - from pointing out the material to an outfit in 8hrs.
3) They are good - you vaguely say what you want, they provide it that night, better than you could imagine it yourself, and perfectly fitting.

37 / What is your phone number in urgent case ?

From over see, you can call our hotline number + 84 9 13224473 ( Vietnam colde : 84 ) 9 for cell phone - following 8 numers

When you are in Vietnam, you dial directly 0913224473 - 091336 5849

Contact number in Hanoi - + 84 4 8 3 364121 - contact number in Hochiminh city : + 84 8 3 8334083

42/ Do you arrange the honeymoon in vietnam?

You should have a look at some of the resorts in Hoi An, the Furama also on China Beach, there are a number there like Life Resort (good spa) and theres lots to see culturally and the food is great. Obviously depends on your budget but there is the very upmarket Eveson Hideaway in Nha Trang where you'll get very pampered

The Life Resort Hoi An hotel would be a very romantic place to stay. (There are also less expensive options, several of which are enthusiastically reviewed.)

The town itself is beautiful, with much to see and several good restaurants (two of them in the Life Resort itself). Plus Hoi An is close to a nice beach.

Nha Trang is wonderful! It has a great beach and your husband could try scuba diving if he's into sport, there's many schools. There's one diving school, which I recommend, based at 'Crazy Kim's' bar which is a fantastic bar which finances a school for the street children. There's also a very famous natural hot spring baths where I also had one of the best Thai massages and greatly recommend. There's two wonderful ancient temples in town on the cultural side. to visit. There's lots of wonderful restaurants or you can have lobster cooked in front of you on the beach. It is an amazing town. I also highly recommend Ho Chi Min City (formerly Saigon) which is a beautiful city. I wasn't over enamoured with Hanoi, although it has a beautiful lake and a couple of good museums and of course Ho Chi Min's mausoleum.

Another option: Phu Quoc Island. Phu Quoc does not have as many touristic facilities as mainland's towns and cities do but it has a wonderful wild nature. When we were there, we could see many couples enjoying their honey moon in the island. Some resorts have their own beach. Tourists could play volley ball on beach. There are bungalows which are so nice for couples. Riding motorbikes through the national park is also fantastic. We hired a boat (just us) and the boat took us around little ilands. It now and then stopped some places where the tour guide told us what we could do such as fishing, snorkling. One of the things I liked best is that lying on the beach in the shade of palm trees growing along the baech. Breeze and sounds of sea waves gave me a wonderfulfeeling. I also loved the food they served during the trip. Actually it was the fish which we fished during the tour and they were all freshly cooked righton a beach of one of the islet. So we ate what we caught. How interesting it was. At night time, we still could use the pool and after that went for a walk along the beach. How surprising it was whenI thought there would be nobody on the bach at the time of the night but it was not true. There were many couples still around on the beach. We accidently walked to close to a couple who were having their romatic time on the beach. We just had to quickly and quietly changed our direction.

I wish you have a great honeymoon in the place you choose.

The main attraction in Mai Chau (apart from the scenery) is being able to stay in traditional housing, browsing/buying weaving and doing a bit of trekking in thesurrounds. Most of the trekking is of the full day variety rather than longer, multi-day trips and as far as I know, you are required to take a guide. I'm sure you'd be able to arrange a one-on-one trip though (you and the guide).

As for motorbike hire, I'm not sure. If there's not places explicitly hiring bikes out you may be able to come to some kind of informal arrangement once you're there. The other option is just to hire the bike in Hanoi and ride there yourself -- it's not all that far.

43/ How to make the payment ? do you accept the Visa or travellers check ?

You can make payment by cash, bank transfer, credit card ( Visa, Master and American Express ). It's inconvenient for us to accept travellers check as we only receive the money in our bank account after serveral months.

Money Transfer: Payment by money transfer service of Western Union (Applied if you are not in Vietnam)
You can choose many of bank agents of Western Union in your country or do it online to transfer money to our company. Please follow the guide of http://www.westernunion.com
After that, please send us the bank code of this transaction by fax/ mail, then if it is approved, we will send you the confirmation. (Bank charge may apply. This, if any, will be settled by client)

46/ How safe is Vietnam?
Vietnam is a relatively safe country to visit. As a woman, I have travelled extensively in Vietnam on my own with absolutely no problems. Despite people's fears, there is almost no animosity towards Americans.

That said, there are increasing instances of theft, especially in HCMC where pickpockets and snatch thieves on motorbikes are the worst menace. The best tip is to be vigilant at all times. Often cute kids or old grannies have deft fingers. Leave all valuables (expensive watches, jewellery, glasses, etc.) at home, and don't even wear flash costume jewellery. Make sure you have a firm grip on cameras and shoulder bags at all times and never leave anything you value lying around unattended. I would also not advise taking cyclos late at night, especially in HCMC or as a female on her own.

The other problem area is on the trains, especially the night trains from Hanoi to Lao Cai. Again, make sure all your luggage is safely locked, preferably stowed out of sight or attached to an immovable object, and don't leave things near open windows. It's also wise not to accept food or drink from people you don't know (there are reports of one or two people being drugged and robbed this way).

You might also have read warnings about unexploded shells, mines and other ordnance lying around. This is still the case in the DMZ, around My Son and certain border areas, particularly along the Chinese border. It is advisable to visit such areas only with an experienced local guide and never stray off well-trodden footpaths anywhere in Vietnam.

Finally, there's the traffic. Trying to cross the street in Hanoi or HCMC is an adventure in itself! You'll be faced with a tightly-packed stream of scooters, bikes and cyclos which looks completely chaotic at first. But don't give up! Either walk till you find some traffic lights or just go for it. The key is to walk slowly and steadily out into the traffic. As long as you keep a steady pace and make your movements clear, the traffic will flow round you. Problems arise if you stop or move too quickly and the drivers/riders can't anticipate your progress.

Unfortunately, driving standards are pretty poor. Vehicles are badly maintained and the roads are becoming ever more crowded, especially Highway 1. As a result the number of serious accidents on the highways is on the increase.

But don't get paranoid! Thousands of people visit Vietnam each year without experiencing any problems whatsoever. It's also worth bearing in mind that the situation in Vietnam is certainly no worse than many big European and American cities. Just take the same precautions you would in any unfamiliar place, and you should be fine.

Adopt Vietnam Resources:

47/ What level of comfort do the trains in Vietnam provide and how safe are they?

There are five classes on Vietnamese trains: hard seat, soft seat, hard sleeper, soft sleeper and "super berths" (soft sleeper with air-con), though only the long-distance expresses offer the full range. For short journeys hard or soft seat carriages are fine, though most Vietnamese people can only afford hard seat so these carriages tend to be packed out.

For longer journeys, particularly overnight, try and get a sleeping berth. Hard sleeper consists of six bunk beds in one compartment (two tiers of three). In most cases the seats have padding and it's reasonably comfortable; the exception is the night train to Lao Cai, when you just get a hard wooden bunk and a mat to sleep on. Prices for the bottom bunk are highest and the top bunk is the cheapest, partly because you have to climb up and also because there's very little space between the bunk and the ceiling. Soft sleeper compartments have four bunks (two tiers of two) which are all priced the same. Note that sleeping berths get booked up well in advance, so it's best to make your reservation as early as possible.

Meals are provided on longer journeys, though you may prefer to take your own supply of snacks, fruit and bottled water. You can supplement these when vendors come on the trains at stations to hawk their wares.

As far as safety goes, in my experience (as a female travelling alone) the trains in Vietnam are fine. However, theft is becoming more of a problem on some routes, particularly the night trains from Hanoi north to Lao Cai. It's wise to ensure your luggage is locked and safely stowed away, don't leave anything lying near an open window and always carry your valuables with you. In the sleeping carriages the bottom seats lift up and you can put your bags underneath, so these berths are quite a good idea. The only downside is that everyone will be sitting on them during the day - which means you can't stretch out if you want a nap. The top berths have access to a useful storage space above the door.

48 / Is it a good idea to take gifts to present in Vietnam? What would be appreciated?

Is it a good idea to take gifts to present in Vietnam? What would be appreciated?
Giving small gifts to those who have performed a special service or with whom you have a working relationship is greatly appreciated. Anything from your local area, such as cakes, sweets, chinaware or photo books or calendars, is a good idea. Otherwise, inexpensive make-up, perfume, jewellery and pretty toiletries go down well with women, while men will prefer pens, cigarette lighters, imported cigarettes, whisky or other spirits and car/biking magazines. For children, obviously small toys such as inflatable playground balls and skipping ropes are popular and easy to transport. Or how about drawing books/pads of paper and pencils or crayons, erasers, model cars, small-size T-shirts and other clothes.

When presenting gifts, don't expect effusive thanks as this isn't Vietnamese style. Whatever their reaction, you can be sure that the gift was appreciated.

 
 

 

MeKong Delta Tours - Asia Pacific Travel
Hanoi head office: 66 Hang Than St., Hanoi, Vietnam
Tel: (84.4) 38 364 212 - 37 568 868
Fax: (84.4) 37 567 862
USA/Canada Toll Free 1-866-208-6418
Australia Toll Free 03 90010198

Contact us by email

MeKong Delta Tours - Asia Pacific Travel in Danang
Add: 79 Thanhlong St., Haichau Dist, Danang City, Vietnam
Tel: (84.511) 6 286 088
Fax: (84.4) 37 567 862 /(84 511)3531897
Contact us by email

MeKong Delta Tours - Asia Pacific Travel in Hochiminh city
Add: 127 Ban Co St., Dist 3, Hochiminh City
Tel: (84.8)38333388 / 62729925/ 38337714
Fax: (84.8s) 38 334 083
Contact us by email

Business hours: 8:00 - 18:00 ( Monday - Saturday ) - 8:00 - 17:00 ( Sunday ) GMT+7

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