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Vietnam forum

VND, USD or my dashing good looks??

Posted by Benno on 19/3/2012 at 02:31

Hi All,
When in Vietnam, do I pay in VND or USD for things like food, taxi, massage, tours, shopping items etc. I don't want to exchange a ton of USD and then turn around and have to change it back, thus getting screwed on the exchange rate back to AUD.
What is the recommended amount to have with me when I hit the airport in both currencies?
If there are people out there that can assist, I would be most grateful.

As you can see by my question, I don't think I will be able to get away with things on looks alone. :)

#1 Benno has been a member since 18/1/2012. Posts: 36

Posted by eastwest on 19/3/2012 at 03:06

If you bring your ATM card you can get by with very little cash USD. All ATMs dispense VND.
I don't know where you land but there should be an ATM if you arrive in HCMC or Hanoi.

In general VND is the only accepted currency. Some hotels and bigger purchases can be paid in USD but check the rate carefully. Some will give you a good rate because they want to have hard currency, others will try to screw you.

Always good to have some USD as emergency back-up and I would bring in any case some $200-400 in USD (or AUD) for those sundays, power cuts or lost/broken ATM card.

#2 eastwest has been a member since 17/12/2009. Posts: 778
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Posted by Benno on 19/3/2012 at 06:43

Thanks very much. That clears it up- the bit about ATM's. In Cambodia the ATM's dispense USD and that's the currency of choice with only small change being local currency.
Funny story in Cambodia - crossing from Thailand. Stop at side market and get food.
How much for can of coke? US$1... Bought.
How much for packet of pringles? XX Thai Baht... Bought
How much for mars bar? XX Cambodian money... Bought
Funny part of the world, 1 stop, 1 country, 3 currencies....

#3 Benno has been a member since 18/1/2012. Posts: 36

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