I did that one a few months ago and I found the current prices on Seat61 to be up to date, or very nearly so.
Right now it says $36 for that journey in the highest class, and I'm sure that's right on or very close. I actually stopped in Hue.
I've found that hotels and travel agents normally add about $2 to the price, and considering the hassle in going to the station and booking yourself, to me it's worth it.
I think that $36. figure would be for soft sleeper, but that is not the highest class. On the SE1, the private Livitrans car is about $43. for a berth. I've taken both soft sleeper and Livitrans, and no comparison, take Livitrans. I took soft sleeper last year from Hue to Nha Trang and had roaches in the compartment. Livitrans is much much cleaner with no unwanted roommates, and certainly worth the extra cost. SE1 southbound and SE2 northbound are the only trains with Livitrans service. Livitrans is also on the Hanoi-Lao Cai service.
#3 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,083
Thanks all...ended up paying $47 for livitrans class booked through our guesthouse and includes a taxi to the station and use of a shower after we return from ha long bay. Seems worth the $4 markup to have them take care of it.
#5 plew10 has been a member since 4/1/2010. Posts: 20
thank you for opening this thread, it also heloed me..
would you please tell which guesthouse you stayed? Do you recommend it?
#6 selinsay has been a member since 19/9/2010. Posts: 3