This is a very interesting question. Will you come back to Vietnam? Everybody has their own story and experiences while visiting the “Hidden Charms of Vietnam”. Many travelers might have good memories of the wonderful hospitality of Vietnamese tourism services, mouthwatering and authentic Vietnamese cuisine and enjoying the most spectacular views of sea front, highlands and historical sites in the country.
But, some others may have a bad experience when visiting this country. In some cities, there are some street sellers that have always overcharged and refused to return back proper change during business transaction. One of my personal experiences, during my first trip to Vung Tau beach city, the seafood restaurant used to charge triple to the lobster that we ordered, even during that time, I was there with a native Vietnamese travel buddy from Saigon. In other case, a friend of mine took a cruise trip to Halong Bay and unluckily the tour operator had overbooked and suddenly he had an unexpected roommate during the cruise. He couldn’t get any refund, just continued with the trip.
According to a travel writer in his website, Matt said that during his trip to Mekong Delta, he took a bus back to Ho Chi Minh City and intended to buy lemon juice at a rest and relax station. The lady drink vendor kept laughing and looking at him continually. A Vietnamese overseas who joined the trip informed him that the seller tried to rip off to him because he was white.
Mark, another white traveler said that he came twice to Saigon and Hanoi and he always enjoyed the stay at backpacker area even being ripped off is always as expected to happen. He shared that most of cab drivers are rip offs especially at Noi Bai International Airport. But, you need to be wise with Viet-can-scam cabbies. A dodgy cab meter is normal and it is great if your hotel can arrange for airport pick up. Buying watch, books, postcards and DVD are mostly a ripped off especially for White in Asia.
Be cautious, Less Hassle & enjoy your Trip in Vietnam
No kids. Believe me! Vietnam is not a friendly kid place to travel. Mekong tours need you to jump from one place to one place. The traffic in city centre is crazy and the food hygiene is limited for your kids.
No flashy dress. You might get sexually or emotionally harassed.
No Iphone, No Ipad and flashy gadget when travelling here. These stuff is very high in demand in Vietnamese second hand gadget market. Instead of losing your gadget, get some nokia with price around VND200,000 from local mobile shop.
Never go out with less than VND300,000 cash. It may not be enough for your food and transportation.
Use cabs instead of “xe om”or motorbike taxi. It is safer and less hassle to use a legalized cab operator such as Vinasun and Mai Linh.
Always eat local and remember that wet tissue is not for free. It will cost you around VND2000 each.
Sometimes you will meet with a “mid age women” at backpacker area and says that they have a cheap room and you should give a try on it for 1 night. You need to avoid any hotel that the owner is staying there because normally they will lock the door after 12 AM and you will have some difficulties to get in.
Back to the original question, you will come back to Vietnam? You may get ripped off but with power of Google and information sharing in online forums and blogs, you should be well prepared to visit or maybe come back to Vietnam.