How to plan your first trip to Vietnam

If you are looking for a low cost, friendly, and interesting tourist destination, Vietnam will be a country not to be missed. You will be definitely impressed by a lot of unique scenery and landscapes in this country. To make your trip perfect without risks or regrets, make sure that you prepare for your trip carefully. If this is the first time you come to Vietnam, this article will provide you all you need to know before traveling.

Halong bay

1. Determine time and budget
Time and budget are two important factors determining your traveling. So before you start planning for a trip, you need to determine how much time and how much money you will spend on the trip. This will help you choose the right places to go.

We suggest you take at least a week for your first trip to discover the most famous cities in Vietnam, from the North to the South.

2. Choose places to go
After determining the time and budget for your trip, the next step is to choose places to visit. Based on your interests, you should decide on your itinerary. It can conclude many cities if you have enough time, or just visit 2-3 outstanding destinations.

Each region of Vietnam will have many different landscapes and weather. Note that to make sure you choose the right destination with your time.
  • North Vietnam: Hanoi, Quang Ninh (Halong Bay), Sa Pa, Ninh Binh, Ha Giang, where is hot and humid with high rainfall from May to October, cold and dry from November to April
  • Central Vietnam: Danang, Hoi An, Hue, Dalat, Nha Trang, Quy Nhon, where has hot, dry weather between January to August, and rain in September, October & November
  • South Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City, Mekong Delta, Phu Quoc, Phan Thiet, Con Dao, with dry season from November to April, and rainy season from May to October.
3. Make a detailed schedule
After brainstorming basic ideas for your trip, it is time for you to make a detailed schedule. This is the most important thing you need to do before your trip.
Answer these questions: What will you do? Where to go? What is the sequence of places you will visit? How much time do you spend in each place? How much money do you spend on accommodation, tickets, transportation, food, etc.? The more detailed your schedule is, the more effectively you will save time and money.

4. Booking services
Once you have exact visit time, you should plan for booking services for your trip, including applying for a visa, booking flights, accommodation, local transportation, exchanging money…
Apply for visa: First thing you need is to check if you need a visa to Vietnam, and apply for a visa if necessary. It is advised to apply at least 3 working days before your flight.
Find out more information about Vietnam visa here.
Book your flights: If you fight from abroad, you may land in either Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh or Da Nang, the three biggest cities in Vietnam. From there, you can move to other provinces or cities with domestic flights. There are 4 flight companies in Vietnam that are Vietnam Airline, Bamboo Airline, Vietjet, and Jet Star.

Book accommodation: Depend on your budget, you can choose suitable accommodation which is budget-friendly or luxurious. There are different types of accommodation in Vietnam you can consider such as hotels, hostels, resorts, guest houses.

Book local transportation: If you travel from 1-2 person, you can book a personal motorbike or Grab to move between landscapes in a city. If your team has many people, or you need to travel between provinces, consider using local coach, bus, car, or train.
Exchange money: It is advised for you to exchange money to Vietnam dong or USD before you go to Vietnam. Or you can prepare USD and exchange to local money at the airport.

Don’t want to think too much about these above preparations? Consider booking a Vietnam tour and you don’t need to spend time to research all.
Completing all the above steps, your trip is ready now! Let’s go and explore interesting things waiting for you in Vietnam!
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