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Trip Preparation For Vietnam Travel

[ Trip Preparation For Vietnam Travel ] Travel In Vietnam ] Return Home ]

Vietnam Tourism

Visit XUVN.COM for More Insight of Vietnam, Its Land & Its People
Overview of Vietnam Tourism
Travel to Vietnam Advisory
A glance at Vietnam
Images of Major Tourist Attraction in Vietnam
Tour of Vietnam With Pictures
Top reasons to be a tourist in Vietnam
Vietnam Virtual Tours
Vietnam Tour Companies
Hotels In Vietnam
Activities, things to do
Major Tourist Attractions
Night Entertainment in Ho Chi Minh City
Night Entertainment in Ha Noi
Nha Trang Night Clubs
Hue Night Life
Backpacking Travel Guide
Search for Hostels
Prostitution in Vietnam
Transportation in Vietnam
Telecommunication in Vietnam
Telephone in Vietnam
Communication in Vietnam
Go around in Vietnam
Where to live in Saigon
Shopping in Vietnam

To travel to Vietnam, you must at least:

  • Review the basic information provided in the Opening page of this Chapter Vietnam Travel Guide to know what you will face; and to completely enjoy your trip, you must also review the Vietnamese Cuisine and Food & Culture Chapters
  • Sketch out a Travel Plan, which comprises: budget planning, Where you want to go & visit, What you want you do in Vietnam (Prearranged Travel Tour, Trekking on your own, Adventure Tour, Bike Tour or...), time frame for each required activities (such as Passport, Visa application, required immunization shots, transportation, lodging, activities reservation)
  • Execute your in Plan in timely manner.
  • BON VOYAGE!

Read the U.S. Department of State for International Travel

Read These Documents carefully before taking the trip

Applying for Visa

Get in Hanoi Reservation

Get in Ho Chi Minh City Reservation

Lodging In Ha Noi Reservation

Lodging In Ho Chi Minh City Reservation

Activity - Package Travel Tour Reservation

Planning a Trip - Money

Applying for Visa

http://www.vietnamembassy-usa.org/news/index.php?category=12

http://www.vietnamembassy-usa.org/travel_to_vietnam/entry_and_exit/

Visa

Any foreigner or overseas Vietnamese wishing to visit Vietnam must fill out one 1 entry visa application form. The paperwork must be sent to a Vietnamese diplomatic representative office (the embassies), or consulate general of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, in the most convenient country.

This rule may not be applied for citizens of countries with which Vietnam has bilateral agreements for visa exemption. (Please contact the Embassy of Vietnam for more information)

Customs

  • All visitors to Vietnam should fill in declaration forms and show their luggage to Customs officials on request.
  • Luggage, personal possessions and goods brought to Vietnam in amounts sufficient for personal use only, and not listed among noncommercial goods not to be imported, are exempt from tax.
  • Travelers' luggage as declared at Customs offices on arrival must be shown again at Customs when leaving Vietnam, except for articles which have been consumed or given as gifts.
  • Visitors to Vietnam can bring with them unlimited amounts of foreign currency, objects made of gold, silver, precious metals and gemstones or plated with silver or gold, but these must be declared in detail on their customs forms. Travelers can change their money for Vietnamese dong (VND) at the banks, hotels and jewelry shops throughout the country. Foreign currency must be changed into Vietnamese dong for shopping.
  • Travelers can take with them unlimited amounts of souvenirs bought with receipts.

Some Embassies of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam:

Australia
6 Timbarra Crescent
O'Malley
ACT 2603
Tel (062) 866059

France
62, rue Boileau
75016 Paris
Tel 4524-5063 or 4527-6255

Mexico
Sierra Ventana 255
11000 Mexico, DF
Tel 540-1612

Thailand
83/1 Wireless Road
Bankok
Tel (02) 251-7201

United Kingdom
12-14 Victoria Road
London W8 5RD
Tel 937-1912

Making Transportation Reservation

http://wikitravel.org/en/Hanoi

Get in Hanoi

By plane

Most folks arrive at the Noi Bai International Airport, 35 km (45-60 minutes) north of the city. Several airlines run flights from Noi Bai, including:

  • Vietnam Airlines - 25 Trŕng Thi (corner of Quang Trung) tel: (84-4)9349660 fax: (84-4)9349620. The primary national carrier.
  • Cathay Pacific . Upscale airline with flights to Hong Kong.
  • Hong Kong Airlines . New carrier with daily flights to/from Hong Kong.
  • Lao Airlines . Small airline with 4 flights a week to/from Luang Prabang in Lao.
  • Pacific Airlines (tel: 84-4 9550550). Newer, discount Vietnamese carrier.
  • Tiger Airways (tel: 84-4 9454565) . Low-cost airline with daily flights to/from Singapore.

 

  • Taxis to downtown Hanoi can be hired at Noi Bai. The driver may try to deliver you to a hotel of his choice so he can collect a commission, but if you are specific about your destination, they usually give in. Taxis from the city centre to Noi Bai Airport charge a fixed rate of about US$16.
  • Public buses to the city center from Noi Bai airport charge 5000 dong and take about an hour. Bus #07 crosses the Thang Long bridge and goes to the Daewoo Hotel on the western part of Hanoi. Bus #17 crosses the Chuong Duong bridge and goes close to the old quarter.
  • Shuttle-buses to the airport depart from opposite the Vietnam Airlines Office on Quang Trung (see below). Tickets cost ~US$2 and are sold in the building in front of which the minibuses park. From the airport, the fare is US$4.

Get in Ho Chi Minh City

By plane

Tan Son Nhat (IATA: SGN | ICAO: VVTS) is Vietnam's largest international airport. Immigration is notoriously strict and can be time consuming, but if your papers are in order you should be fine. Note that the all-white departure cards are only for those without the 'yellow paper' received upon arrival.

The recently introduced No. 152 air-con airport bus is the cheapest way into the city, and will drop you off on the west side of the Pham Ngu Lao area, or at the bus terminal on the south side of the Ben Thanh Market roundabout. The price was recently increased to 3000 dong - still a bargain by any measure.

Taxis from the airport to the city centre take 30 minutes and cost US$3-5; make sure the driver uses the meter. However, if you want to avoid the trouble of bargaining and negotiating, you can just buy a "Taxi coupon" near the exit of the airport terminal for US$5.

You can change money at the airport, but you're probably better off paying for your first trip with US$ and exchanging in the city as the exchange in the airport may charge a commission as high as 3%.

Taxi drivers get commission for taking customers to certain hotels so when arriving at the airport be explicit about exactly which hotel you want to be taken to. This may be harder than expected if the hotel is one that doesn't pay commission.

When going to the airport, taxi drivers often attempt a scam involving an airport entry tax; it's their job to pay it. As of November 2006, international departure taxes should be included in the price of your ticket. Check with your airline before leaving, however, as some tickets (including any bought before the November 2006 change) do not include the tax, and you'll find yourself faced with a 240,000 dong suprise at the check-in counter.

Major airlines flying to Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi:

Aeroflot

Air France

All Nippon Airways

Pacific Airlines

Philippines Airlines

Asiana Airlines

Korean Air

China Airlines

Emirates

Singapore Airlines

Cathay Pacific

Eva Air

Uzbekistan Airlines

Tiger Airways

United Airlines

Garuda Indonesia

Japan Airlines

China Southern Airlines

VietnamAirlines

Thai Airways Intl.

Lao Airlines

Lufthansa

Malaysian Airlines

Qantas Shanghai Airlines

China, Japan, Korea, and Russia have direct flights to and fro Ho Chi Minh City or Hanoi.

Cheap airlines: Air Asia operated between Hanoi and Bangkok, Hanoi and Kuala Lumpur, Jetstar between Ho Chi Minh City and Sydney, Tiger Airway between Hanoi/ Ho Chi Minh City and Singapore.

Airlines
Vietnam Airlines (International)
116-118 Nguyen Hue Blvd.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 292118
Vietnam Airlines (Domestic)
27b Nguyen Dinh Chieu St.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 299980
Air France
Dong Khoi and Le Loi St. (Caravelle Hotel)
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 241278
Aeroflot
4H Le Loi St.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 93489
Thai Airways
116 Nguyen Hue Blvd.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 292118
Philippine Airlines
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 292200
MAS
116 Nguyen Hue Blvd.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel (08) 30695

Lodging In Ha Noi

Budget

The Old Quarter is littered with guesthouses and hostels catering for budget travelers.

  • Real Darling Café Guesthouse, 33 Hang Quat, Old Quarter (2 minutes walk from the north side of Hoan Kiem Lake) tel: +84 4 826 9386 fax: +84 4 824 3468 darling_cafe@hotmail.com has basic but cheap rooms (US$6+, dorm beds US$3/night, long stayers can get lower rates) with fan, hot showers and optional air-con; there's a steep climb up to all the rooms. Helpful and friendly staff; the café on the ground floor does a good breakfast; they run a cheap and fair travel agency downstairs that doesn't try to rip you off; bicycles and motorbikes for rent. Keep an eye out for construction on Hang Quat (Fan Street), though.
  • Wing Hotel, 23 Hang Non, Old Quarter, not far from Real Darling, the Wing Hotel has clean rooms, friendly and professional staff and a book exchange. Breakfast is available. Some rooms have balconies overlooking the street. A double can cost as low as 160,000 dong, although the standard price is 192,000.
  • Thang Long Opera Hotels (formerly Thuy Tien Hotel) - only three minutes to Hanoi Opera House and five minutes walk from the Hoan Kiem Lake or Hanoi Old Quarter.

Mid-range

  • Continental Hotel - 24, Hang Vai, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi [11] Boutique-style hotel, has clean and spacious rooms; Hotel staffs are courteous, friendly and warm. Walking distance to Hoan Kiem Late, easy access to restaurants and shops. (around US$24 for a single room, US$28 for twin sharing, incl bf and taxes)
  • Green Park Hotel - overlooking the immense green of the biggest park of the city and along the vicinity of Thien Quang Lake. Its architectural design combines the 19th century French assembly with modern Vietnamese concepts.
  • Hanoi Elegance Hotel, No 85 Ma May Str & No 8 Hang Bac Str., tel: +84 4 9263451, fax:+84 4 9263452, info@hanoielegancehotel.com  is in a street in the Old Quarter that thanks to a curb doesn't see as much through-traffic and thus is quieter than most. The newly built boutique hotel offers luxury accommodation in elegant settings with modern facilities & amenities served by professional staff. Rooms US$28-70 with TV, fan, air-con, hot shower, bathtub or Jacuzzi and optional breakfast. In-room computer with Internet access is free of charge. The friendly staff can help with arranging tours etc.
  • Huyen Trang Hotel - one of the most beautiful 2 star hotels in the city, next to Hoan Kiem Lake.
  • Majestic Salute Hotel - in the Old Quarter, a newly built boutique hotel with marvelous French architecture.
  • Quoc Hoa Hotel - in the Old Quarter. Opened in 1991, and one of the first private boutique hotels in Hanoi.
  • Rising Dragon Hotel 61 Hang Be Street - Vietnamese and American managed, next to Hoan Kiem Lake, new facilities in renovated historic building of the Old Quarter. Special tour services. Prices start at US$20.
  • Sunshine Hotel, 42 Ma May Street  has clean rooms in the middle of the Old Quarter (around US$30 incl. taxes & breakfast)
  • Sunny Hotel - enjoys views towards both the Old Citadel and the West Lake.
  • Viet Anh Hotel, 11 Ma May St., Tel: +84-4 9261302, Fax: +84-4 9261306. A terrific hotel with friendly staff, reputable tours, and newly remodeled rooms, located on a shady, beautiful street in the Old Quarter. Internet and a good buffet breakfast (with chef on hand) are included in the room rate. Room rates can be negotiable depending on the season, with some as low as US$15, but official prices range from US$18 for a standard room to US$60 for a family suite.
  • Zephyr Hotel - just a few steps from the famous Hoan Kiem Lake, and within walking distance of the Opera House.

Splurge

  • Daewoo Hanoi Hotel
  • Fortuna Hotel
  • Guoman Hotel - on Ly Thuong Kiet Street.
  • Hanoi Horison Hotel - opened in 1997.
  • Hanoi Hotel - near the city centre and International Trade Exhibition Fair Centre.
  • Hilton Hanoi - US$80-105
  • Hilton Hanoi Opera Hotel - adjacent to the Hanoi Opera House.
  • Melia Hanoi Hotel - city centre, 5-star.
  • Nikko Hanoi Hotel
  • Sheraton Hanoi Hotel - on the shore of Hanoi's largest West lake, with lush gardens, sweeping lawns and tranquil courtyards.
  • Sofitel Hanoi - 15 Ngo Quyen Street (between the lake and the Opera) [15] US$169-390
  • Sofitel Metropole Hanoi Hotel - within walking distance of the Hanoi Opera House, Hoan Kiem Lake, etc.
  • Sofitel Plaza Hotel (formerly Meritus West Lake) - renowned as the most scenic hotel in Ha Noi with a zig zag facade and stepped architecture.
  • Sunway Hotel - boutique style, 143 rooms

 

Lodging In Ho Chi Minh City

Budget

Pham Ngu Lao in District 1 is the main backpacker hangout, just a short walk (10-15 minutes) from Ben Thanh Market. The lanes and alleys in the area between Pham Ngu Lao and Bui Vien are jammed with 5-10 room mini-hotels offering prices around US$6. Don't be dismayed if every place seems full, you can be assured that vacancy is virtually unlimited at this price. Keep heading southwest away from the backpacker hustle closer Ng Thai Hoc, you'll likely find that as the alleys get smaller the rooms get quiter and owners more friendly.

  • Duna Hotel, 167 Pham Ngu Lao; tel: 8373 699. Rooms range from $12 for a single room with no window to $30 for a triple with a window facing the street. All rooms have A/C, satellite TV, a fridge and are very clean for the price. The staff is pleasant and there is an elevator. The only complaint is that the front door is locked early (around 11 or 12pm) and to get back in you must bang loud enough on the shutter door so that the staff sleeping inside can wake up and let you in.
  • Hotel Bi Saigon, 185/26 Pham Ngu Lao (in alley #185) tel: 8360678. Not the cheapest hotel, with a "Superior" room for two costing US$27, but clean, comfortable and terrific staff. In-room Internet access is just US$3/day (bring your own laptop). The lobby houses the La Table De Saigon restaurant, great food and a perfect place to get a snack before heading out on the town.
  • Nguyen Khang Hotel, 283/25 Pham Ngu Lao; tel: 8 373 566 nguyenkhanghotel@yahoo.com.vn - in a small alley that links Pham Ngu Lao and Do Quang Dau, along with several US$8-20 competitors of variable quality. This particular hotel has a nice vibe, kind staff, free Internet and free breakfast. Recently built (or remodeled), clean, tastefully simple in decoration, rooms have air-con, fan, 'fridge (and those at the front have nice large windows). US$15/day and under.
  • Rainbow Hotel, 283/5 Pham Ngu Lao; tel: 8360039. Large bright (albeit somewhat worn) rooms, and those at the front have a nice view. Good value at US$9 and under.
  • Thanh, 40/6 Bui Vien St., 8361924 (). Bright, clean rooms in an alley around the corner from Pham Ngu Lao. Run by a friendly family. Rooms with hot water and satellite TV are US$10 per night.

 

Mid-range

The area around Ben Thanh market along Le Thanh Ton and Ly Tu Trong has many reasonably priced hotels with clean rooms in the US$25-35 bracket; some provide free wi-fi.

  • Ngoc Ha, 53, Le Anh Xuan. Close to Ben Thanh market and the New World Hotel. Clean and decent rooms, air-con, 'fridge, wi-fi in the lobby. Rooms US$25-35 including simple breakfast.
  • Y Thien, 247 Ly Tu Trong; tel: (84-8) 824 8176. This full service hotel is 5 minutes from Ben Thanh Market and offers a range of rooms from tiny and windowless (yet functional) to quite nice with a full wall window overlooking the city and streets below (try the 4th floor room to the right of the elevator for US$20-25/night). Rooms are clean, bathrooms are large and recently upgraded (overkill on the shower remodeling). TV with cable, air-con, fan, 'fridge, elevator, all night guard for bikes, in hotel safe. If you don't want to stay in the backpacker area, and are willing to pay a little more, it's a good option.

Many of Saigon's historical hotels are in the hands of Saigontourist, the former state monopoly. Thanks to recent competition, service and facilities are adequate, although not quite up to modern standards; but if you want to experience a little colonial atmosphere, these remain far and away the best choices at the moment.

  • Continental Hotel, 132-134 Dong Khoi Street. A perfectly located old-school colonial hotel dating back to 1880 and the setting of Graham Greene's The Quiet American (but not, alas, its filmatization). Lovely breakfast garden, huge rooms, nice balcony views and only slightly expensive at US$60 and up (taxes, service, breakfast included). On the minus side, there is no pool, and traffic noise can be irritating.
  • Rex Hotel, 141 Nguyen Hue Boulevard. Ideally located in the heart of Ho Chi Minh City, next door to the People's Committee Hall. Another old standby, former haunt of the press corps and site of the daily news briefing during the Vietnam War. The 5th floor beer garden (Rooftop Garden) is famous and its symbol, the golden crown, is rotating again. Slightly more expensive at US$70 and up, but the rooms are very pleasant. There's a swimming pool on the roof and an excellent buffet breakfast.
  • Dong Do Hotel, 35 Mac Thi Buoi Street, District 1. Reasonable prices (around US$20-35), this new hotel offers you clean and comfortable rooms, good location where you can visit all the cool places in the center of Saigon.

Splurge

Luxury hotels are popping up faster than mushrooms in the monsoon rains. Expect to pay closer to US$200 a night for any of these.

  • Caravelle
  • Hyatt.
  • New World Saigon Hotel. Recently renovated, a single bedroom suite on the Executive Floor is US$250 including butler service, unlimited food/snacks/drinks during the day, and lavish buffet-style happy hour in the Executive Floor lounge every night. The nightly all-you-can-eat seafood buffet in the Park View Coffee Shop for US$20 is fantastic. On the downside, the rooms can be noisy as the windows are single pane and there is a busy street outside.
  • Renaissance Riverside
  • Sheraton Saigon. Complete with Prada shop in the arcade.
  • Sofitel Plaza
  • Hotel Majestic. 4 star hotel in District 1, at the waterfront at the end of Dong Khoi Street. It got its start in 1925, and though it has undergone a number of renovations since, it maintains the same basic look outside. Nice but expensive rooftop bar serving mediocre ice cream and drinks. Offers a non-smoking wing for those tired of smoke.

Activity Reservation

Travel Tour

Adventure Tour

Bike Tour

Special Tour 

        http://www.topvietnamveterans.org/index.html

        http://www.vietnamadvisor.com/Travel+to+vietnam+level/Vietnam+Veteran+Tours

 

Planning a Trip - Money

http://realtravel.com/vietnam-travel-guide-d1698-1.2279420.html

The East Asian financial crisis is now a distant memory, and Vietnam is generally gaining economic clout in the world; but the rate of exchange, not to mention the price of most goods and services, means that travel in Vietnam and throughout the region is very budget-friendly. Especially in smaller towns, you'll find that you can live quite well on very little, and Vietnam's resort destinations and luxury accommodations in general come at a fraction of what you might pay in your home country.

ATM service is good in most cities, but if heading off into the countryside, bring cash. Note that the U.S. dollar is used widely in both Vietnam and Cambodia: In fact, the dollar is the de facto currency in Cambodia, and packing some U.S. greenbacks will come in very handy. Traveler's checks, an anachronism elsewhere in the world, are still not a bad idea, though expect to pay a 2% or 3% commission to exchange them into U.S. or Vietnamese currency. All hotels can do business in U.S. dollars. In some parts, everybody down to the smallest shop vendor quotes prices in U.S. dollars, and particularly the big-ticket items are best handled with greenbacks instead of large stacks of local currency.

While dealing in U.S. dollars can make things less complicated, always keep in mind local currency values so that you know if you're being charged the correct amount or are given the correct change (usually in Vietnamese currency). In this guide, we've listed hotel, restaurant, and attraction rates in whatever form the establishments quoted them -- in U.S. dollars (designated by the dollar sign: $) where those were quoted, and in local currencies (with U.S. dollar equivalents) where those were used.

Be sure to check the currency's current status. CNN's website has a convenient currency converter at www.xe.com/ucc.

Currency--The main unit of Vietnamese currency is the dong (noted as VND), which comes in notes in denominations of 200, 500, 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, and 100,000, as well as the new 500,000 note. There are now also 200-dong coins. Most tourist venues accept dollars, and even in small towns you will at least be able to exchange greenbacks, if not use dollars directly. The exchange rate is approximately 15,000 VND to $1.

It's unlikely that you'll be able to get your hands on any Vietnamese currency in your own country when planning for departure to Vietnam, but it's easy to get started with a handful of U.S. dollars or traveler's checks that you can easily cash at an airport kiosk upon arrival. ATM service in the larger cities and towns is growing exponentially.

ATMs--The easiest and best way to get cash in Vietnam is from an ATM (automated teller machine) and you'll find an increasing number of machines throughout the country. Most tour centers at least have a branch of Vietcombank with an international ATM (for a fee, of course) and the number of international banks is growing year by year.

The Cirrus (tel. 800/424-7787; www.mastercard.com) and PLUS (tel. 800/843-7587; www.visa.com) networks span the globe; look on the back of your bank card to see which network you're on, then call or check online for ATM locations at your destination. Be sure you know your personal identification number (PIN) before you leave home and be sure to find out your daily withdrawal limit before you depart. Also keep in mind that many banks impose a fee every time a card is used at a different bank's ATM, and that fee can be higher for international transactions (up to $5 or more) than for domestic ones (where they're rarely more than $1.50). On top of this, the bank from which you withdraw cash may charge its own fee. To compare banks' ATM fees within the U.S., use www.bankrate.com. For international withdrawal fees, ask your bank.

You can also get cash advances on your credit card at an ATM. Keep in mind that credit card companies try to protect themselves from theft by limiting the funds someone can withdraw outside their home country, so call your credit card company before you leave home. And keep in mind that you'll pay interest from the moment of your withdrawal, even if you pay your monthly bills on time.

Traveler's Checks--Traveler's checks are something of an anachronism from the days before the ATM made cash accessible at any time. Traveler's checks used to be the only sound alternative to traveling with dangerously large amounts of cash. They were as reliable as currency, but, unlike cash, could be replaced if lost or stolen.

These days traveler's checks are not necessary because most cities have 24-hour ATMs that allow you to withdraw small amounts of cash as needed. Rural stops in Vietnam are less likely to have ATM service, so carrying some traveler's checks as a backup isn't a bad idea.

Note: Most retailers don't accept traveler's checks in Vietnam, which means you'll have to pay a commission to exchange them. Using ATM machines is preferable, where service is available.

You can get traveler's checks at almost any bank. American Express offers denominations of $20, $50, $100, $500, and (for cardholders only) $1,000. You'll pay a service charge ranging from 1% to 4%. You can also get American Express traveler's checks over the phone by calling tel. 800/221-7282; Amex gold and platinum cardholders who use this number are exempt from the 1% fee.

Visa offers traveler's checks at Citibank locations nationwide, as well as at several other banks. The service charge ranges between 1.5% and 2%; checks come in denominations of $20, $50, $100, $500, and $1,000. Call tel. 800/732-1322 for information. AAA members can obtain Visa checks without a fee at most AAA offices or by calling tel. 866/339-3378. MasterCard also offers traveler's checks. Call tel. 800/223-9920 for a location near you.

If you choose to carry traveler's checks, be sure to keep a record of their serial numbers separate from your checks in the event that they are stolen or lost. You'll get a refund faster if you know the numbers.

Credit Cards--Credit cards are a safe way to carry money. They also provide a convenient record of all your expenses, and they generally offer relatively good exchange rates. You can also withdraw cash advances from your credit cards at banks or ATMs, provided you know your PIN. If you've forgotten yours, or didn't even know you had one, call the number on the back of your credit card and ask the bank to send it to you. It usually takes 5 to 7 business days, though some banks will provide the number over the phone if you tell them your mother's maiden name or some other personal information.

Keep in mind that when you use your credit card abroad, most banks assess a 2% fee above the 1% fee charged by Visa or MasterCard or American Express for currency conversion on credit charges. But credit cards still may be the smart way to go when you factor in things like exorbitant ATM fees and higher traveler's check exchange rates (and service fees).

Visa and MasterCard are the most commonly accepted cards throughout Vietnam; American Express is often taken as well at more high-end spots.

Read These Documents carefully before taking the trip

 

U.S. AUTHORITY

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1468.html

This information is current as of today, Sun Jul 15 2007 15:53:18 GMT-0700 (US Mountain Standard Time).

Customs authorities may enforce strict regulations concerning temporary importation into or export of items such as firearms, religious materials, antiquities, medications, business equipment and other items .   It is advisable to contact the Embassy of your destination country in Washington or one of that country’s consulates in the United States for specific information regarding customs requirements. In many countries around the world, counterfeit and pirated goods are widely available.  Transactions involving such products are illegal and bringing them back to the United States may result in forfeitures and/or fines.  A current list of those countries with serious problems in this regard can be found here.  U.S. Customs and Border Protection may impose corresponding import restrictions in accordance with the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act.  (Contact CBP at 202-344-1000 or Internet http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/import/commercial_enforcement/ for further information).  For general travel information, visit the CBP web site at http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/.

Document Requirements

http://travel.state.gov/travel/requirements/requirements_1233.html

Different situations require different documents. Please become familiar with the specific document requirements for the country(s) you are visiting. More information on these documents can be found here:

 

VIETNAM AUTHORITY

http://www.vietnamembassy-usa.org/travel_to_vietnam/entry_and_exit/

Visa

Any foreigner or overseas Vietnamese wishing to visit Vietnam must fill out one 1 entry visa application form. The paperwork must be sent to a Vietnamese diplomatic representative office (the embassies), or consulate general of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, in the most convenient country.

This rule may not be applied for citizens of countries with which Vietnam has bilateral agreements for visa exemption. (Please contact the Embassy of Vietnam for more information)

Vietnam Customs

  • All visitors to Vietnam should fill in declaration forms and show their luggage to Customs officials on request.
  • Luggage, personal possessions and goods brought to Vietnam in amounts sufficient for personal use only, and not listed among noncommercial goods not to be imported, are exempt from tax.
  • Travelers' luggage as declared at Customs offices on arrival must be shown again at Customs when leaving Vietnam, except for articles which have been consumed or given as gifts.
  • Visitors to Vietnam can bring with them unlimited amounts of foreign currency, objects made of gold, silver, precious metals and gemstones or plated with silver or gold, but these must be declared in detail on their customs forms. Travelers can change their money for Vietnamese dong (VND) at the banks, hotels and jewelry shops throughout the country. Foreign currency must be changed into Vietnamese dong for shopping.
  • Travelers can take with them unlimited amounts of souvenirs bought with receipts.

Duty-Free Items
Visitors may import 200 cigarettes, 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco, 1 liter of wine, 1 liter of liquor and an unlimited amount of film. Commercial goods and items of high value being taken out of Vietnam require export permits from the Customs Service. Antiques may be confiscated permanently. No local currency may be taken out of the country.

The Customs Service Headquarters
21 Ton Duc Thang St.
Ho Chi Minh City
Tel 90095

 

 

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