Travel planning is an essential part of any trip no matter where you will go. It allows you to budget for your trip and saving your time as well. There are certain things you need to know before visiting Vietnam – especially if you’re a first time visitor.
1. Don’t forget checking your visa requirement
The Vietnam E-visa is available to over 80 different nationalities and grants the holder entry to the country for tourism. Travelers from other countries must contact directly to the Vietnam Embassy/Consulate to get Vietnam Visa beforehand. In order to check your Visa requirement, click here
2. Travel insurance
Vietnam is a relatively safe country to visit, you still should prepare for unforeseen circumstances. Food poisoning, traffic accidents, losing your belonging, or even missing a flight are just some of the things that can really ruin your Vietnam trip. So the first thing you need to do is to consider travel insurance for your trip.
3. Choose best time to travel
With more than 1,600 kms long, the weather in Vietnam varies considerably as you go from north to south, from a temperate to a tropical climate. This variety makes Vietnam a year-round destination depending on your targeted location. Here are some reference information:
- North Vietnam: Spring (February to April) and Autumn (September to November) are the 2 most suitable & beautiful seasons to travel to, when days are generally warm and sunny.
- Central Vietnam: Travelers will experience pleasant weather in Central Vietnam any time between February and August, sunny 30°C (86°F) days are the norm in July and August.
- South Vietnam: South Vietnam experiences warm, pleasant temperatures year-round, making travel good at any time. The dry season generally runs from December to May and a rainy season runs from June through November.
4. How to get around
Traffic in Vietnam are much of a hassle. With motorbikes and cars running on the street using the same lane, people just randomly cross the road, and motorbikes sometimes even go on the sidewalks. On the other hand, Vietnam is one of the cheapest countries to visit in Asia and getting around is super affordable. Among the many ways to get around in the cities include taxis, local buses, bicycle rickshaws, and even motorbike taxis you can use Grab Taxi to avoid scam services.
5. Be aware of scams
The first Vietnam tip you need to know about is to try and book your tours or trips through a reputable website beforehand. Klook, SaiGon Tourist or Viet Travel has tons of options at reasonable prices.
6. You don’t need to tip
Tipping is not really a thing in Vietnam like other countries in Southeast Asia. However, if you decide to splurge on a fancy dinner or pop into a swanky eatery, expect a 10% service fee already worked in on your bill.
In big cities and tourist cities such as Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang, tipping seems more common.
7. Learn a few key Vietnamese phrases
The official language in Vietnam is Vietnamese, but English is widely spoken in more touristy places. It’s always a good idea to know some basics words. Here are a few key phrases that will make your trip a whole lot more enjoyable and perhaps even impress a few locals:
Hello – Xin chào
Goodbye – Tạm biệt
Thank you – Cám ơn
Sorry – Xin Lỗi
Please – Làm ơn
No – Không
How much is it? – Cái này giá bao nhiêu?
Please help me – Làm ơn giúp tôi
Where is the bathroom? – Nhà vệ sinh ở đâu?