17K19 DUONG DINH NGHE STREET,
DISTRICT 11, HCMC, VIETNAM
Tel: (848) 39650338 – 39650339 – 39650300
Fax: (848) 39623790
VAT: 030 2299883
GENERAL INFORMATION Time
Vietnam is 11 hours ahead of
Eastern Standard Time and 14 hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time.
The weather in the southern part
of Vietnam is tropical. It is monsoonal in the north, bringing a hot, rainy
season from mid-May to mid-September and a warm, dry season from mid-October to
mid-March. Occasional typhoons from May to January bring extensive flooding to
the middle regions of Vietnam.
220V and 50Hz, but 110V (also with
50Hz) may be encountered
Vietnamese is the official
language; French, Chinese, English, Khmer and tribal dialects (Mon-Khmer and
Malayo-Polynesian) are also spoken.
The currency issued by the Vietnam State Bank is the dong (abbreviated "d" or
VND), which is used uniformly throughout the country. There are presently bank
notes in circulation in dominations of:
100 dong, 200 dong, 500 dong, 1,000 dong, 2,000 dong
5,000 dong, 10,000 dong, 20,000 dong, 50,000 dong, 100,000 dong
Traveller's cheques and credit cards (American Express, Visa, Mastercard) are
exchanged for Vietnamese dong at the banks. Cards can be used in travel
agencies, hotels, and major restaurants. US currency is exchanged for Vietnamese
dong and treasury notes in banks, exchange bureaus, hotels, and jeweler shops.
The exchange rate always changes. When leaving the country, remaining Vietnamese
currency can be exchanged for US dollars at the exchange bureau at the airport.
USD14 per pax at Ho Chi Minh Tan
Son Nhat International Airport.
Tipping is not customary in
Vietnam, but it is enormously appreciated. A 5-10% tip for a meal is a very
small amount of money, but to the average Vietnamese, it could easily equal a
day's wages. Avoid tipping too much, as it will set a precedent for others.
Shopping hours: 0800 AM- 1000PM
Customs & Immigration:
On arrival in Vietnam, you must
complete white and blue duplicate arrival-departure forms. The blue copy is to
be kept with your passport at all times. Hotels, guest houses and private hosts
must register overnight guests with the local police and these blue forms are
essential for this purpose.
Incoming visitors must also fill out duplicate yellow and white customs
declaration forms. The yellow copy is to remain with your passport until
departure. Do not lose it!
On the yellow and white Customs Forms you are expected to declare:
Cameras, camcorders and other electric equipments not for personal use
Currency: over US$3,000
Jeweler: not for personal use
Video tapes: (they may be kept for a few days and screened)
Duty free allowances are 200 cigarettes, two liters of alcohol, perfume and
jeweler for personal use.
Banned Material: Vietnam has strict laws on bringing anti-government literature,
pornography, firearms and weapons into the country. CDs and tapes are often
retained for screening, but will be returned after a few days. It is illegal to
remove antiques from Vietnam. When buying handicrafts, especially those that
look old, ask the retailer for a receipt and declaration that the item may be
Police: 03 Ho Chi Minh City Police Station 161 Nguyen Du, Quan 1 • 113,
99398 or • 97107
First Aid: 05
Health risks: Dengue fever,
hepatitis, malaria, rabies (if in the country for a month or more), typhoid and
tuberculosis (if staying with locals in a high risk area for a few months or