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To book or not to book?

  • stephmccabe

    Joined Travelfish
    2nd June, 2009
    Posts: 1

    My partner and I are traveling from Hanoi to HCMC then across to Cambodia in August this year (2009). We are wondering wether it is necessary to book accommodation via the internet before we go. Do places book out? We are looking at about US$10-30 price range per night. Can you get a better deal if you show up on the night?

    Also, any information/ideas on things to do in Vietnam would be greatly appreciated. e.g. we are unsure which overnight junk boat Halong bay tour to do as there are so many to choose from.

    Has anyone changed NZ Dollars in Vietnam, is this easy?

    Thank you in advance and look forward to your reply :)

    #1 Posted: 23/6/2009 - 15:08

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  • Layabout

    Joined Travelfish
    17th March, 2008
    Posts: 27

    I haven't got any answers for you but will be waiting to see any as I am doing the same thing but the opposite direction in August aswell and am looking for the same advice.
    If you have time I am told that SAPA in the northwest is a great place to see.
    In Cambodia if you get to Siem Reap a good guest house is The Two Dragons, you may have to book the owner Gordon has a web site "Tales of Asia"

    Happy Travels

    #2 Posted: 23/6/2009 - 19:47

  • somtam2000

    Click here to learn more about somtam2000
    Joined Travelfish
    21st January, 2004
    Location Indonesia
    Posts: 7371
    Total reviews: 24
    Places visited:
    At least 113

    As long as you're willing to be a bit flexible in your requirements, there is little need to book in advance -- especially for budget places. You'll see on Travelfish the vast majority of budget places cannot be booked online, so there is no shortage of places to stay.

    No trouble changing NZ cash in bigger centres.

    Ha Long Bay is close to a must see -- see the feature stories section for some pieces that give suggestions on picking the right tour -- at the end of the day, don't book in advance and ask around for personal experiences.

    #3 Posted: 24/6/2009 - 08:33

  • BruceMoon

    Click here to learn more about BruceMoon
    Joined Travelfish
    27th December, 2008
    Location Australia
    Posts: 1941
    Total reviews: 6


    The answer is yes and no!!!

    I'm retired. I like to know that when I've travelled a long distance, and I'm approaching a major city (where I've never been before), I can count on pre-booked accommodation. It just makes the journey so much easier. This is especially important where I won't make the city till after 5pm (for me, that's beer oclock).

    That said, if I'm arriving to a smaller place, I don't get so worried, nor if I'm arriving with enough time to look around.

    So, my resolve? When coming in from a long distance away, and arriving later in the afternoon, I'll pre-book one night (unless it's peak/festival time and space limited, I'll pre-book the lot).

    Then, I'll look around the next am for an alternative. If I'm travelling through, and it's only a night at a small town, I just rock up and get a bed.

    I'm reminded that in SE Asia, pre-booking means that I'm paying top dollar. But, the convenience of knowing I've got accommodation is the price I'm willing to pay.

    Hope this helps.


    #4 Posted: 26/6/2009 - 07:48

  • Stalock

    Joined Travelfish
    24th June, 2009
    Posts: 2

    Grand philosophy BruceMoon! - I concur with that. Roll-on beer o' clock!

    #5 Posted: 2/7/2009 - 22:10

  • MissJanie

    Joined Travelfish
    10th June, 2009
    Posts: 7

    There are not much traveller go to Vietnam on August. But if you want to make sure and not much worried about accomodation, i think you should book it now. I just back from Vietnam after a week in Hanoi . The weather is fine. Good luck!

    #6 Posted: 27/7/2009 - 19:23

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