These are no real big deal, but I just thought I would warn others who may fall for them:
HOI AN: at the river end of the market, a woman came to me, offering me a pedicure for $1. I hesitated, she was quite insistent, I, naively, thought, what do I have to lose. She led me to a room in a back alley, removed my existing toe nailpolish, trimmed then got me to lie on this couch so she could trim my heels. She declared that my heels needed a lot of trimming, and said "maybe cost a little bit more". Then after applying the nail polish she asked for 600,000 dong! or $30, it had only taken 20 minutes! Now that is nearly the cost of a pedicure back home and my heels cant have been that bad as I had them scrubbed not that long ago! I had to negotiate hard to get down to 200,000 or $10.
No hard feelings, I just take the attitude that I helped her family LOL... But watch out for a woman called Dao (with a dash through the D) at the river end of the Hoi An Market!
HANOI: This morning on the way to the Prison Museum, my male friend needed to answer nature's call, spotted a public Ve Sinh (toilet), went in, then on the way out was accosted by a woman demanding 20,000 dong ($1). A bit expensive as even in a paying toilet at home it doesnt cost that much! There was no sign about costing money, I think she was just an opportunistic scammer who hangs around waiting for tourists.
Anyone else fall for little scammers like these?
On the opposite, my friend had a wonderful shave of his short beard, plus "nose and ears", by a lovely gentleman at 91 Tran Phu, nearly 1 hour, quoted 80,000 but was happily given 100,000 by my very happy clean shaven friend!
#1 m4yb has been a member since 4/12/2012. Posts: 9
What a shame! The best thing to do with those 'lovely' loitering ladies at the market is to let them show you the location of this $1 treat and then if you are happy hand over the agreed price before she starts. A lot of these 'treatments' take place in a rat infested alley way under tarpaulin by the tool section in the local central market, so if you think you might be tempted have a look first, its quite foul!
The barber on Tran Phu is brilliant, a good find on your friends behalf - he also does eye cleaning which is an 'experience' worth trying once in a life time.
I get scammed every day, even though I speak a little of the language, my best one was ordering from a menu (with photos), being served up something completely different and being told by the manager that 'all foreigner like this' with no choice but to pay $10 for a tomato and lettuce salad. I was too shocked to argue.
#2 LolaNguyen has been a member since 28/8/2012. Posts: 94
Cheeky aren't they! I hope you didn't pay the lady for the toilet use - or not 20,000VND anyway. I have come across public toilets where it's generally accepted that you have to pay a bit (like the one near Bia Hoi International Corner) but it's only a couple of thousand. And in the portaloo type places I've never seen an attendant as such. But someone has to clean them - occasionally - and probably gets paid very little for doing so, so if it was clean and she looked like a cleaner, a couple of thousand would be appreciated. Sorry to hear about the tomato and lettuce salad ... had it been washed in sparkling mineral water??
That stuff happens everywhere. We were in Hoi An, and the women selling lanterns across from the old city before the bridge were asking 20,000 each. Once over the river bridge, we bought 3 for 10,000. But, full disclosure, I speak Vietnamese, even though I'm blonde haired and blue eyed. Don't think that language skills will stop the scammers.
#4 guidosaigon has been a member since 5/1/2013. Posts: 4
On my first trip, this ignorant Westerner paid 150,000VND for a map of Hanoi. Now I pick them up free at the Information Center.
#5 daawgon has been a member since 17/4/2007. Posts: 1,113