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Cash, Cards & ATMs

  • Bigianws

    Joined Travelfish
    28th January, 2014
    Posts: 4

    Hi All

    My wife and myself will be having 19 days travelling around in Vietnam next month. All of our hotels and our expensive trips, Mekong Delta Cruise & Halong Bay Cruise, have been booked and paid for so we do not need large sums of money. We will, however, need spending money for meals, incidentals along with some travel (Danang to Hoi An to Hue to Danang). I think I understand the US dollar v Dong issue but what about ATMs & Credit Card use? Basically should we take a lot of cash or can we rely on ATMs and Credit Card?
    Also can the 45US visa charge be paid using a card or does it have to be dollars?

    Thanks in advance for any help with this one.

    Regards, Ian Smith

    #1 Posted: 22/2/2014 - 00:46

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  • Want2BHappy

    Joined Travelfish
    23rd February, 2013
    Posts: 37

    #2 Posted: 22/2/2014 - 01:49

  • Bigianws

    Joined Travelfish
    28th January, 2014
    Posts: 4

    Whilst I appreciate the prompt response, and helpful link, from the previous poster I'm not sure that my original message was read or understood in it's entirety. I also wish to know how useful a Credit Card is for using instead of cash for smallish and incidental purchases / visa on entry 45US fee etc. ( I have searched this topic but haven't found much up to date info)

    Regards, Ian

    #3 Posted: 22/2/2014 - 03:21

  • somtam2000

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    For small incidentals -- simple restaurants, short transport hops, drinks etc, cash is the norm. Fancier restaurants will accept cards, but I can't ever remember using a credit card in Vietnam for anything except for ATMs and a flight ticket once. I think you can pay for trains with a CC if you do it thru a travel agent.

    ATMs are everywhere, so there is no need to brings wads of US cash with you - though watch out for charges on international withdrawals from your home bank. When I travel in Vn I just hit the ATM up occasionally for as much as it will give me in a single transaction, then use that cash till I run out & rinse & repeat.

    I'm not sure if you can pay for the visa charge with a CC - I want to say no, but I'm not 100% on that. But you should be able to check with whoever you purchased the pre arranged visa through and they should be able to advise -- do let us know what they say!

    Hope that helps.

    #4 Posted: 22/2/2014 - 04:14

  • LolaNguyen

    TF writer
    Joined Travelfish
    28th August, 2012
    Posts: 93

    Posted from within Vietnam.

    The visa charge must be paid in cash and most ATMs have a maximum withdrawal of 2 million ($100) and charge $1 per transaction, they are everywhere. One thing that's worth bearing in mind is that if your card does not work in one it's more than likely the ATM is out of funds, so don't panic and just hit up another. Also if international transfer fees are high from your bank it's not a bad idea to arm yourself with a travel cash card and just load it up before you leave, usually with one of these you will just be charged the ATM fee rather than your banks which can add up.
    Donga and Tec Com ATM's occassionally allow for larger withdrawals (up to 5 million), if not, you can make multiple withdrawals at $1 per transaction from the same ATM.

    #5 Posted: 22/2/2014 - 22:05

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