The guide to a safe trip in Vietnam
Vietnam is the best destination to visit in Southeast Asia. It will be in the bucket list of every traveler who is traveling with family or sole. It is also a safe country to enjoy culture, marine life, adventure, nature, history, or food. The sparkling turquoise seas, curving beaches, stunning scenic beauty, and colonial streets make it a perfect place to get away after a hectic year.
These days Vietnam has become pretty safe. The culture of the site is vibrant, and the history is fascinating. There are millions of people who travel to this country every year, not just the intrepid backpackers, but also with the families, friends, and all sorts of people visit this destination.
From visiting the Corel Reefs in Nha Trang to the mountains in Sapa, traveling to this place is an experience more than a country. You can enjoy the sunset in the Mekong Delta and cruise in the waters of Halong Bay while enjoying the cuisines of Vietnam.
Also, you can go for trekking and wander from one island to another, enjoying its stunning beauty. Homestays are the perfect places to unwind your holidays, watching nature and rainwater flowing into the river of Mekong.
Though it has some downsides such as petty crimes like pickpocketing and fuzziness with the pushy vendors, by keeping a close watch on the surroundings and your valuables, you can avoid the hassles in your travel.
Many people show interest in traveling alone to explore the beauty of Vietnam. It is the place where you can plan the trip within your budget
Southeast Asia is very safe: The people of the country are friendly and welcoming. The food is also delicious that it makes you feel like staying home away from home. There are many beautiful places where you can stay alone comfortably without any intimidation.
You can also find an English-speaking guide to explore the local areas. You can walk around the Ho Chi Minh City during the night times and go on a hiking trail in the jungle or go for an adventurous motorbike ride on Hai Van pass or take a night bus to tour around the country.
Enjoy street life in Vietnam
The soul of Vietnam culture is the nightlife. As you are traveling alone, you can go and visit the places of your choice and have food that you love to taste without any planning. You can find the vendors selling street foods on the city roads. The street eats that you should try Pho and Vietnam spring rolls.
Meet other travelers
When you on the tourist trail, you can meet the fellow solo travelers. These travelers will be sharing the same love for traveling like you. So, you can find new friends who are like-minded as you. There are many hostels in Vietnam. You can stay in those hotels during your visit to meet new people and carry incredible memories with you while leaving the place.
Dos and Don'ts in Vietnam
Vietnam is a place that is rich in history, culture, and is a beautiful country. Though this is a friendly and safe place, to stay trouble-free and have a smooth travel, you should know the dos and don’ts of this place. You should remain calm to avoid arguments with aggressive vendors, tour operators, and fellow drivers while driving on the roads.
- Greetings in Vietnam are no different from Western countries. You do not need to practice or know any kind of welcome when you are in Vietnam
- Vietnamese will dress traditionally. You should dress decently without showing off too much of the skin. If girls are traveling alone, you should be wearing the dress appropriately to avoid creepy looks.
- Dress with pagodas. You should avoid wearing t-shirts and shorts. You can wear shoes, and you do not need to remove them until you come back to the hotel. If you are not sure what to wear, you need to follow the locals dressing.
- Do not wear a lot of jewelry. Even if you have jewelry, you need to take that bag with you. Though violent crime rates are low, many petty crimes happen often. If you have a camera, wear it around the neck and keep your bag safe.
- When you are taking a ride in a motorbike or taxi, ensure that the bag is not on the display since it becomes easy for the pickpocketing people to grab. Bag snatching is a common crime in the country, and there are high chances of miscreants to steal your laptops and cameras.
- Do not wear skirts, shorts and other dresses to the temples
What do you need to keep a watch on when traveling in Vietnam?
- You cannot show affection in public. You will see the couples holding their hands clinging together, but do not kiss or hug in public.
- You should not lose temper in Vietnam. Try to stay polite and calm to avoid getting into trouble.
- You need to drink a lot of water to keep yourself hydrated. You do not need to carry bottles with you since there are many vendors available in the stone throw distance from your place.
- You need to keep the credit cards, cash, airline tickets and other valuables with you safely
- Travel only with the tour agencies that are reliable and certified. Even if you are planning to travel alone without taking the help of tour agencies, you need to research correctly and learn the country from fellow travelers who have already visited Vietnam.
- Do not put valuable stuff in the checked bags
- Use only taxis and public transportation
- Use Maps to calculate the distance to reach your destination to avoid falling prey to taxi drivers’ frauds
- Keep the money in the front pocket
- Buy medicines if you have any problem after eating the street food in Vietnam
Family travel to Vietnam
Vietnam is the best destination to visit with families as it is packed with many fabulous activities. Kids would love to know a little bit about the history of the country, but do not show interest in visiting temples and historical places. Few of the activities that make your family travel to Vietnam a memory includes:
Take an auto-rickshaw ride in the streets of Hanoi: Many families will either start their trip or end their journey by going on the roads of Hanoi. This street is always bustling. So, the parents need to keep their children close by. You can enjoy the mayhem of the road by getting into the auto-rickshaw and tour around the old city enjoying its culture, vibes, and beauty. The driver takes you through the noisy streets where you can see colorful handicrafts and fresh flower stalls.
Pu Luong homestay: You can take your kids to Vietnam in their summer vacation to have a good time with the family. The night stay in the village homes will be an excellent experience for your kids where they can enjoy the view of the lush green fillers around and fresh air. The farms surrounded by deep mountains give a breathtaking view. When you visit the villages of Vietnam, your family can enjoy the food that is cooked on an open fire and sleep on the floor. Night stay in the town has to be experienced by the kids living in the city culture once.
Female travel in Vietnam
Women are traveling around the world due to their flexible working patterns and the ability to spend more. The best part of going alone is that you can fall in love with the spirituality of the place, culture, and nature. Besides, you will have the freedom to make your plans and enjoy the sense of accomplishment by conquering the challenges a woman faces in the travel by yourself.
Women who want to travel alone or in a group can happily go. Though you see catcalling in a few places, taking safety measures while walking alone during night times can help you avoid those. Though serious crimes are minimal, be careful of the petty crimes. You need to keep the documents and bags with you and keep a tab on those.
There are plenty of opportunities for women to make new friends and meet people from across the globe on your tourist trails. These are a few things that you should not miss to do when you are going alone to Vietnam
- Stay in the local Vietnamese family that is in the Ho Chi Minh City
- Go for adventurous trekking in the Sapa and enjoy hiking with the female guides
- Take the bicycles for rent and go around the narrow lanes of the streets and coastal towns
- Attend traditional cooking classes to learn how to prepare Vietnamese food delicacies
- Go around the streets of Hai An
- Witness the visual treat of Halong Bay that makes you feel like it is closer to your life
- Relax in the beautiful blue sea beaches enjoying the coastline of Vietnam
- Immerse in the culture and history of the place
What woman can enjoy in Vietnam
People in rural areas would stare and try to strike a conversation with you. Though it makes you feel uncomfortable, it is also good to learn about their culture by talking to them. Many people in Vietnam are friendly and very helpful, but you need to be cautious of the scams.
When you think you would be in trouble, try to stay polite. Apart from the adventurous trips, there are endless wellness treats available for women in the country, such as chicks club that organizes weekend getaways and retreats for females focusing on Yoga and meditation.
For backpackers, there are many female dormitories and hostels available in tourist places.
Travel in a group
Though you are exploring different places by yourself, it is now time to go to Vietnam in a group. Many tour agencies plan your trip with the group. You can either go with your friends in a group or join the group of solo travelers who are traveling through the same travel agency that you have approached. Group travel will help you to get rid of many travel problems
There are many benefits of traveling in a group to Vietnam
Do not need to worry about the language barriers: When you are going in a group to Vietnam, you do not need to worry because there would be a group of travelers with you who can deal with the locals verbally. For a group, the travel agency will send a local guide.
Cut down the budget: When you are going in a group, you need to set a budget. The budget must not be too high or too low; after all, you are going for fun and relaxation. By going to a group, you can limit your expenses on accommodation and many other things. However, before going to Vietnam, you need to read about the positive image of the country to get some insights.
Accommodation: If you are going to a group, the person who already visited Vietnam will arrange the accommodation in advance. If your group has a limited budget, you can go for the Boutique hostels, as these are cheap and comfortable.
Safety: When you are going in a group, there will be a group leader who will give proper advises avoiding the mess in the new place. When something goes wrong in the back, be it health-wise or get into arguments, the group people will help you to get out of the trouble.
Electricity safety in Vietnam
The electricity in Vietnam is 220 volts. You will find the plugs in Vietnam to be having two round pins and sometimes come across the two flat pins and three pins. You can find the adaptors in any of the electrical shops to charge your mobiles or laptops. The power supply is interrupted more often. So, prepare yourself to experience power cuts and surges. The Power outlets are compatible to use with the US plug or European one. Before leaving for Vietnam, you need to carry the adapter along with you.
Water safety in Vietnam
It is highly recommended not to drink tap water whenever you are. However, few of the top hotels will filter the water and release the same water through the taps. You can drink the water after filtration but never drink river water. It is good to avoid ice when you are drinking juices outside except in the top hotels and reliable food courts.
The water that is contaminated with bacteria and viruses would cause sickness. It may disturb the whole travel itinerary of yours. So, you need to be careful while drinking the water outside. The microorganisms in the water would cause different health ailments such as diarrhea, typhoid, cholera, and other issues. These diseases would trigger even when you drink the water that seems to be clean and safe.
Luckily, there are different types of drinks available to quench the thirst, such as hot tea. You can get the carbonated beverages and bottled water at a lower price. When you are buying bottled water, you need to make sure that the seal of the bottle is proper and the water is clear. Many would refill the water in the used bottles and sell it to the people.
Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City have tap water that is properly chlorinated, and many travelers use this to brush their teeth without any issue. You must not use tap water for cleaning the teeth since it is impure. You need to be careful in the areas where there are floods, since sewage water may get along with the water system.
Vietnam is famous for its many beautiful beaches. You can both enjoy the picturesque beauty of the place and diverse marine life. You can dive deep to witness the stunning and colorful sea creatures that are mostly found in the Vietnam region. The incredible sea creatures are located in the Vietnam Balmy seas.
Phu Quoc’s horned sea star: This is a kind of starfish that is found in the tropical seas of Vietnam. The thorns of this sea creature are used to scare the predators and surprise the tourists. However, this creature does not pose any harm to tourists. If you want to witness the beautiful sea creatures and especially this one, you need to travel to Phu Quoc.
Whale sharks of Nha Trang: People who want to see the sea creatures would like first to witness sharks. The whale sharks in the Vietnam Sea are around 40 feet and weigh 200 tons. Moreover, the shark is the longest creature that is found in the sea. This one will float to the bays of the Nha Trang and give a feast to the tourists. It will live on krill and Plankton.
Ocean sunfish: This is also called by the other name, i.e., Mola Mola, whose weight is around 2000 pounds. It is the giant fish that one can catch its attention at the winding coastline. It is also found in the fishing nets of the fishermen. However, you cannot consume this fish as this is an endangered ocean giant.
Hunted hawksbill turtle: This is the endangered sea turtle that is found in the stretching coastline of Vietnam. You can witness the beautiful hawksbill in the clear waters of Nha Trang. Due to illegal fishing, the population of this sea creature has been reduced drastically.
When you are visiting a new place or country, you would love to try out the food delicacies that are special in that place. Vietnam has been a country where food safety issues are frequent. Food in Vietnam, especially the street food that is sold, is not safe to consume. The vendors will not take any hygienic precautions while preparing the food. The sidewalk eateries will use adulterated ingredients to save money. If you are buying vegetables in Vietnam, you need to wash them neatly before eating.
To keep food poisoning at bay, a few of the safety precautions you need to take while having food in Vietnam include:
- Soupy dishes are the main dishes in Vietnamese cuisine. These dishes have more chances of you falling sick. When you order Pho ensure to consume the meal when it is piping hot.
- Clean the cutlery that you are going to use thoroughly. The quality of air in Saigon is reduced, and therefore, dust would settle on the tables and utensils. Though you do not need to deep clean everything that you use to have the meal, you need to wipe it gently using the napkin to keep dust at bay.
- Eat the food that is cooked thoroughly and stay away from the raw meat. You can try out the seafood in the Sushi restaurants if you are going to stay in Vietnam for a short time.
- You must not eat raw vegetables and salads. You can add herbs to the hot Pho.
- Be cautious while consuming the fruits and vegetables with skin and avoid eating apples and grapes
- When you are eating something use sanitizer to clean the hands
Vietnam has excellent transportation facilities where travelers can travel from one place to another without any hassle with the available mode of transportations safely. When going to long-distance, airplanes, trains, and long-distance buses are available for travelers. If you are traveling within the city, you can use Taxi, buses, cyclo, and XeOm. These are the most cost-effective and best ways to go to town.
Cyclo: This is a three-wheeled bicycle taxi that has two seating that has two large wheels in the front and a small bicycle seat behind, which is supported by a single wheel. Though the people in the city do not widely use this, many tourists love to try out this option to explore the city traveling even in narrow lanes. This vehicle is best to take a glimpse of city life.
You need to be wary of notorious drivers. They create fuss and nuisance on the road to make you pay a whopping price for the ride. It is not recommended to use cyclo during the night times since there are many mugging and theft cases been registered. Cyclo is the best option to go for a relaxed tour of the city during the day time.
Xe Om: This is a motorcycle taxi and is the best transportation option available for solo travelers to explore the city and go to the sightseeing places by escaping congested traffic areas. You have to pay to the drivers depending on the traffic, distance, and terrain. The driver would provide you with the helmet and ensure that you reach safely and on time to the destination. If you are traveling on busy roads, then this will be the best option. You can also enjoy the thrill of riding on the downhill.
Cheap and safe transportation
Local buses: Many buses are run to offer better connectivity throughout the city. The bus fares are also economical. These buses let you reach the destination quickly. However, during peak hours, you must not take local buses as it is highly uncomfortable to stand. You also need to keep a close watch on the wallet or purse. The other problem is that the drivers do not stop for a minute at every stop. The pickup and drop points are far away from the tourist attractions.
Many traffic laws promote road safety in Vietnam. The police are ready to slam a considerable amount of fines on the people driving in the wrong route, jumping the red signals and using the sidewalks like a driving lane. Be it; you are the citizen of the country or a foreigner, both are fined the same.
- Not more than two people should go on the bike:
- Do not go beyond the speed limit set by the police authorities
- Do not forget the kickstand
- Do not drink and drive the vehicle
- You should not blow horn during the night times
- You cannot weave hands
- Do not run away when the accident happens due to your mistake
- Do not use a cell phone while riding the vehicle
- You have to wear a helmet
- You cannot ride along with the other person side by side
- You cannot offer a push to the friend whose vehicle has flat tire or trouble till the repair shop
What needs to be careful about when traveling in Vietnam?
Vietnam is a safe yet incredible destination for travelers to enjoy its beauty and attractiveness. Though the country is peaceful, there are a few things that you need to be careful about in your trip to ensure that you have a hassle-free and memorable experience:
- Ensure that you are using only reliable tour operators when you are looking for tours to Vietnam
- Ensure that you carry all the required documents, photos and cash along with VISA
- Do not underestimate the weather as it varies unpredictably
- You need to be cautious while consuming the street food
- Always wash and peel the fruits and vegetables you eat and do not drink tap water
- Keep the phone and wallet out of sight of miscreants and make sure that the purse is in front of you
- Do not keep the passport in the backpack
- Do not forget to take the hotel business card
- Many people will not accept credit or debit card, most of the places where you are going for shopping or doing any service, you would need to pay cash
- Stroll when you are crossing the street
- Do not give tips in the restaurants
- When you are visiting the temples, you need to cover with scarf or pagodas
- Do not depend on the taxi meter as the dishonest taxi drivers will burn holes in your pockets
- Do not take the photographs without seeking the permission of the people
- Do not lose your temper
- You need to negotiate on the things you are buying
- Take travel insurance from the reliable insurance vendor
- Learn a few words in Vietnam
Laws and culture in Vietnam– safety aspects
The laws in Vietnam are not as strict as the other countries, but people who break the rules would be put behind bars. It is a conservative country where the adoption of western culture at an extreme level is not tolerated.
These are the laws and cultures that you need to know to stay trouble-free and have a great and enjoyable visit to Vietnam
Drug laws: The penalties imposed on the drugs are more. As per Vietnam’s drug law, any person who is selling or consuming small amounts of heroin is given a death sentence. Many foreigners are going through the imprisonment sentence. There are many safety measures taken by the government to reduce drug trafficking. The travelers need to beware of the recreational drugs sold in this country. If you want to party, you have to do is cautious.
Sensitive photography: When you capture the photographs of military or border crossing, you will put behind bars.
Sensitive borders: If you do not take the required permissions from the local authorities while crossing the boundaries, there are high chances of you getting the punishment.
Antiques: You cannot export antique pieces out of the country without permission. The Ministry of Culture will give you the proper instructions if you need any required permits.
Gambling: It is illegal to play in the casinos other than the government casinos. If anyone found playing in different casinos would be facing the charges and are sentenced to imprisonment.
Politics: If any foreigner is carrying out political actions that have an impact on the government, then the person would be put behind bars or detained.
Prostitution: This is illegal in the country
Blogging: If someone is blogging about the Vietnam government and discussing the same in the online chat rooms would be under arrest and questioned.
Crime in Vietnam
Vietnam is a safe place to travel, but alike to the other countries, it has its share of sins. When you go on the streets of Vietnam, you can see poor people begging on roads and children pushing you to offer them alms. However, if you want to donate money, you can give it to the authorized organizations that will take the money and help the poor.
You should not leave the bags dangling on the body, as many snatchers would snatch and go away. If you do not want to fall prey to the snatching, you should keep all your valuable things in the hotel before leaving for the tourist destinations. There are a few children who look innocent, but lift wallets, passports, and cameras. When you have a conversation with them, you need to keep a close watch.
Few of the severe crimes include
- Petty crimes
- Military and political hazards
- Drug trafficking
- Beggars and scams
Medical treatment in Vietnam
The medical tourism of the country is growing at a brisk pace. This country offers traditional medicine and high-quality treatment procedures. Many medical tourists visit this country to cure their health ailments.
The ex-pat who is visiting the country has to take private insurance before traveling to Vietnam. The quality standards of the public hospitals in the country are not so high. The hospitals do not have the proper equipment, and the medical staff can only talk in Vietnam. The private hospitals will give the best treatment and also accept international insurance. Vietnam is famous for dental care. There are top dentists and dermatologists you can find in this country. The dental-related procedures are pretty low compared to other countries.
Moreover, the treatment quality, skills of the doctor, and usage of technical equipment is top-notch. Traditional medicine is also famous in the country. Tourists can undergo oriental medicine and acupuncture.
Recommended travel insurance
Every traveler needs to take the best travel insurance that offers better coverage to cover the theft, illness, and injury during the travel.
The best available travel insurance is with World Nomands.
Please note: we are affiliate with Travel Nomands Insurance. However, we do encourage you to click here and check Travel Nomands insurance package by your self.
It includes medical expenses for travel accidents, natural disasters , scuba diving or when you are prone to serious illness. There are a few policies that would exclude a few dangerous sports until and unless you do not pay extra amount.
Even if you are prone to injuries while playing games such as scuba diving, whitewater rafting, kite surfing, or other activities, you would be covered when you have the best travel insurance. If you want to try motorbiking in Vietnam, you need to make sure that the insurance covers biking in Vietnam. If you are going to claim the amount, you need to keep the receipts of the medical bill and treatment. If you lose the medical bills, you need to get an official statement from the police.
The best thing about taking Nomad insurance is that it offers various travel insurance plans at affordable prices. Besides, the support team is available to answer your queries round the clock. Interestingly, this insurance allows travelers to use it at any time. You can also buy this right from your home and even if the trip is in progress. You can get the claim anywhere globally.
Tourists scam to avoid
People of Vietnam like to shower their love for the foreigners. Unfortunately, many scammers prey for the tourist to steal their valuables. When you are in Vietnam, you need to keep a tab on these things:
- When you try to pay the amount to the motorbike taxi drivers, they try to cheat you and portray as if you are ripping them. You need to get a proper change to avoid this scam
- The beautiful girls will play with the groin of handsome boys and men, and when the boy shows a small distraction, the girl will steal the money from pockets
- There are fake taxi companies who will tamper the meter and charge whopping money even for a short distance
- Fake tour agencies will trick the foreigners who do not know Vietnam and take the money
- Many motorbike taxi drivers will be wandering around the hotels and hostels where tourist stays to sell tea bags in the name of marijuana. When you pay the amount, they keep the tea bags in your hand and leave the place.
- Beautiful women seduce men and demand money. When the men refuse to pay the money, they will call gangsters
- Taxi drivers make the tourist wander around and take many dollars extra from them
- They ask you to pay extra money for loading bags to the buses.
The climate in the country is unpredictable. There are chances of you to freeze during the monsoon season. It is better to carry light jackets when flying to Vietnam. The peak season would be in the mid of December, and it would continue till February.
- If you are traveling to North Vietnam, you can plan your trip in April to June months or from September to November months. These are the sunny days where the monsoon will come to an end. From December to March, the weather turns cold and is not at all suitable to go for hiking or sailing in the boat in Halong Bay.
- If you are traveling to Central Vietnam, you can plan the trip from January to June. There will be torrential rains during the October and November months and sunny from May to August.
- If you are traveling to Southern Vietnam, you can plan the trip from January to April. You can witness the beauty of the country. Moreover, you can visit the South region anytime throughout the year, but not between May to November, since it is the monsoon season.
You need to pack dry clothes, a rain jacket and a pair of hiking shoes.
Where to get safety updates
These are a few sites from where you can get safety updates regularly:
With many tourists thronging to this place to enjoy their holidays, few dangers are common. However, the Vietnam government is taking measures to control the crime rate. Moreover, this country is known to be safe.
So, what are you waiting for, plan your next vacation to Vietnam right today?