Photo: Canals of Ca Mau, Mekong Delta.

Vietnam forum


Posted by colourco on 19/2/2011 at 06:15

This will be our first time in Vietnam and although we are not getting too wound up about the travel advice re: getting ripped off. It is of concern. We were thinking maybe use a guide with transport to take us around and provide travel advice. Is this a good idea or will they just support their friends? How much would you pay? Can anyone recommend someone who will do the right thing? Thanks Mick

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Posted by octopus29 on 20/2/2011 at 14:33

how about me? would be 15$ for a day city tour per person :) without transportation and lunch.
i normally do the big tours like from Saigon to Hanoi by motorbike. which would cost 40$ to 50$ a day per person not include hotel and other fees, depends on which language customers require and how far they wanna go. i speak fluently english and german and some italian. i live in Saigon by the way

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Posted by busylizzy on 20/2/2011 at 16:35

Vietnam is much easier to get around then many lead you to believe. I would not suggest that you need a guide for the duration of your stay in Vietnam.

Having said that, there is nothing wrong with getting someone to take you out on day trips in and around the cities (as suggested by Octopus). Likewise, doing a multi-day trip on the back of a motorbike is a fantastic experience and one that I would highly recommend. It is a way to see another side of Vietnam, get a chance to meet locals, and to get off the beaten track.

Some of the limitations of hiring a guide for a long-term trip is that you kind of lose the freedom to do your own thing when you want, and you lose an element of space and privacy. It's also costly when you consider that you typically need to cover their accom as well as your own. I did a 9-day motorbike trip from Dalat through to the Mekong. I was a bit worried about being on the move every single day over that period and wanted a chance to slow it down once or twice. We agreed with the motorbike guys that we would spend an extra night in HCMC, and that they would have the day off, leaving us free to just wander around HCMC on our own. We paid the motorbike guides a reduced daily rate for that day (as a 'retainer'), but still had to cover their accom that night.

So, hire a guide for a day trip or multi-day trips as part of the overall experience. But don't hire a guide just because you are afraid of being ripped off. That's the wrong reason for doing it. And you won't be ripped off if you keep your senses about you. Yes, you might be overcharged a few dollars here but it's not a big deal. Overall, Vietnam was the cheapest country our of the SEA countries that I visited.

#3 busylizzy has been a member since 31/12/2007. Location: New Zealand. Posts: 2,152
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Posted by octopus29 on 20/2/2011 at 16:59

very good advice Busylizzy. maybe u misunderstood when i said "not include hotel and fees". it meant for CUSTOMERS. 50$ a day is include the hotel for ME [img]smileys/smile.gif[/img]
i will bring my guests to very nice and cheap places anyway (25$ is the most expensive one with 2 beds, include breakfast, swimming pool and so). so its no big deal. and my guests can design tours for themselves. i will take them to places they wanna go (will give them best advices as well). both motorbike tour and city tour. im a freelancer guide. i dont work for any easyrider company. just experiences collected while travelling around and introduction from ppl who did the trips with me to their friends. and i dont want to have too big group. the biggest group i had was a group with 1 american, 1 canadian, 1 dutch, 2 germans, 1 english. i had to speak both english and german to them. that was exhausted but lots of fun. [img]smileys/smile.gif[/img]

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Posted by colourco on 21/2/2011 at 08:10

Thanks for the advice - Day trip guides sound like the go as we have already booked accomodation, flights etc - cheers

#5 colourco has been a member since 17/2/2011. Posts: 5

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