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Vietnam forum

Cell Phone Use in Vietnam & general safety

Posted by Picasso on 25/7/2013 at 08:05

My daughter is travelling to Vietnam soon for 3 months with a world wide youth group. I ordered a sim card online for her that will 'supposedly' soon get here (Canada). They promote these sim cards by saying "get it before you go so your friends and family will have your number etc...before you leave". It was $50 or so with special speedy delivery. Website Then I forgot about it until I received an email that stated: Vietnamese law requires all sim cards to be registered with customer ID so scan the photo page of your passport and send it back so we can register the sim card on the Viettel network" My scam alert went off immediately and now I'm pretty sure I'm out that $50.
I think I will advise her to buy a local phone instead and take the advise of her group leader once she is there.
Any advice on cell phone use in Vietnam & safety issues in general? I'm a bit worried for her.

#1 Picasso has been a member since 25/7/2013. Posts: 1

Posted by oasisbarhatien on 25/7/2013 at 10:05

Posted from within Vietnam.

Well,it's completely untrue that SIM cards have to be registered here in Vietnam.Anyone can buy them,no need to provide any ID at all-certainly don't send your passport details as asked.They can be bought easily and cheaply,and to call back home is actually pretty cheap.If the phone that she already has cannot accept a Vietnamese SIM card,-maybe because it's locked to a particular network,then just buy a cheap Nokia phone locally (about 30USD) and use the SIM card in that.I hope you haven't been scammed,but I won't hold my breath!!

#2 oasisbarhatien has been a member since 12/8/2010. Posts: 113
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Posted by antoniamitchell on 26/7/2013 at 01:51

Hi there,

I'm sorry to say I agree with the Oasisbarhatien - I'm afraid you're out $50. If you paid with a credit card, contact your card provider and tell them you never received the goods, so they'll charge back to the supplier and you'll get a refund.

Check if her phone needs to be unlocked before she goes (I don't know what the rules are in Canada, but here in England some network providers will do it for free in their shops if you've been a customer for more than a year or so. Otherwise, any phone shop can unlock her phone for a small fee). Or, as said above, she can pick up a cheap basic phone easily in Vietnam.

Once she's in Vietnam, she'll see plenty of shops selling sim cards (certainly in any tourist areas) - she'll be able to pick up a local pay as you go sim card for only a few dollars, including some airtime to get her started. The shop will probably install and activate it for her on the spot (so she doesn't have to figure out how to access the English menu) - 2 minutes and she's good to go. It really is that simple (and there's no need to register).

Vietnam is very rewarding and broadly very safe - a few scams (well documented on this site) but very little violent crime on tourists, so as long as she's sensible and follows the advice of the group leader, she'll be fine. Hope she has a wonderful trip!

#3 antoniamitchell has been a member since 13/5/2012. Posts: 541
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Posted by thaoan on 28/7/2013 at 09:58

Posted from within Vietnam.


I quire sure that very easy to get Vietnam Sim Card everywhere. Just need a little help from staff in hotel she will stay. They happy to assistance her where can get it and help her how to do next. Totally take a few moment, no need to show any further information. it costs 65.000vnd (3$-4$). It will be wasted if you get a cheap Nokia phone locally - NOKIA (450.000vnd = 25$) for short time using. I think that! -:). Just let her know she will get a lot of helpful information from hotel she will stay.

Hope she will enjoy during her trip.

Nice day!

#4 thaoan has been a member since 28/7/2013. Posts: 3

Posted by Night_exile on 7/8/2013 at 23:08

Posted from within Vietnam.

I am local here and I never has to register anything when I buy Sim card. I just need to tell the owner of the store that "I want a sim card with price: 50,000VND" and they will give me without asking anything more.

#5 Night_exile has been a member since 29/7/2013. Posts: 9

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