Is it possible to take the train from Hanoi to Saigon direct (i.e not hop on hop off?) im planning on going from saigon and travel north but need to get back down for a flight in saigon and the internal flights are mega expencive.
if so how long would it take?
Im in Cambodia atm so going north to south makes sense but as i say i need to get back down. help really appreciated as i need to arrange the visa asap
#1 superlaur has been a member since 19/4/2011. Posts: 4
I would have that thought that it was possible, but I haven't read trains in Veitnam so can't say for sure.
Check this site out though - you might find what you are looking for: http://www.seat61.com/Vietnam.htm
Ive been using Seat61 out here and find they are often wrong. and i cant find on there the (directish) its all hop on hop off.
but thanks anymore info will be greatly appreciated
#3 superlaur has been a member since 19/4/2011. Posts: 4
All the trains go from Hanoi to Saigon direct (there is only one train line). They just stop at stations along the way (pretty normal!). It takes 30 hours plus and will cost about $75 for an air-conditioned soft sleeper - which is probably what you'll want for a 30 hour journey. I've found Seat61 to be pretty accurate on timings and prices, or at least accurate enough.
Flight prices have gone up recently but Vietnam Airlines will get you there for about $100 and Jetstar is about the same price as the train. The cheapest option is the bus - but good luck with a 30+ hour journey on that!
The train journey is a bit much to do in one go. Try to organise it so you have a stopover somewhere on the way down that you didn't do on the way up. If you book flights in Vietnam you will find that the price isn't that much more than the train.
The train times change at different times of the year and seat61 is sometimes behind, but it's a reasonable guide. You could also look up vr.com.vn but it's only in Vietnemese now and isn't always up to date either. Really the only way to be sure of times is to check at the railway station.
#6 violets has been a member since 6/7/2009. Posts: 151
An extremely lengthy and boring trip in my opinion - very little to see along the way. Vietnam Airlines does it far better. Use the train for shorter journeys like Danang-Hanoi or Hanoi-Lao Cai.
#7 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,093
Have never found internal flights to be mega expensive unless you leave it till last moment. In that case the train is cheaper but you need to balance between the 2 days you'll be on the train and the two hours or so you'll be in the air. Not a hard decision in my opinion. Leave the train for one of the shorter legs if you have the time.
#8 MotHaiBa has been a member since 3/5/2011. Posts: 57