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Home >> Vietnam >> Vietnam Transport

Vietnam Transport

Transport in Vietnam

Though Vietnam transportation is improving rapidly, when it comes to punctuality and creature comforts it can't be compared to that of European countries, and it is still listed among countries with highest rates of accidents, so it's true to say that a flexible and adventurous attitude is necessary to take public transportation in Vietnam. When you travel long distance from one province to another, airplane, train and buses from credited travel agency are the safer options. However, if you want a more authentic experience you may try some local transports.


Air Transport

International: There are three international airports in Vietnam including Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi, Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City and Danang Airport in Da Nang, serving the north, south and central regions respectively. However, at present the number of direct routes from Australia, Europe and North America to Vietnam are limited and most flights departing from these regions to Vietnam involve a transit in Hong Kong, Bangkok, Seoul, Tokyo or Singapore. Vietnam's national carrier is Vietnam Airlines, which accounts for 37 percent of international traffic to and from Vietnam and fares are usually lower when landing at Ho Chi Minh City.

Domestic: Air transport is the quickest and safest way in Vietnam to travel between large cities, and it can offer the chance to do in one hour what might take the best part of a day by a bus or car. Two airlines, both members of Vietnam Airlines Corporation, offer domestic flights in the country. The dominant one is Vietnam Airlines, which accounts for 94 percent of the domestic demand. The other operator is Pacific Airlines which is jointly owned by the Vietnam Airlines Corporation and several other companies, operates flights mainly between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.



The network of the railway in Vietnam consists of 7 lines with a total length of about 2.600km, connecting most cities and provinces all over the country. Travelling by train in Vietnam is a great way to get a true taste of local life, especially travel along from the North to the South. Aboard the Reunification Express and pass through mountains, forests, valleys, plain and sea on the train in 30 hours, you would certainly have chance to contemplate the incredibly magnificent and fascinating scenery. In addition, the domestic railway system in Vietnam is also linked with the Chinese railway that allows the train to come across the borderline and reach stations in Yunnan and Guangxi provinces. When the railway system in Vietnam is more developed, the network is possibly linked to Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia railway network via which to Singapore and Laos railways. If you are planning a train trip in Vietnam, you may consider Vietnam Express Train, book way in advance and choose an air-conditioned berth when the distance is long, and watch out all of your properties and luggage on the train.



It can be said that bus is the cheapest and most convenient means of transportation in Vietnam since the bus system has been well-developed and even the remotest areas of the country are connected. There are inter-provincial and inner-provincial buses two kinds in Vietnam. The inter-provincial buses are more comfortable with larger seats and better services, and you can find them normally depart from major terminals of each province and go to other provinces in Vietnam; while the inner-provincial ones are operated with worse seats and services. In general, travelling in Vietnam by bus is not recommended unless the distance is short, for seats are comparatively small on Vietnamese buses and the conductor may try to assign more than one person to a seat.



In many big cities and urban areas of Vietnam there are taxi services. Most of the taxies are relatively new and air-conditioned. If there’s no pick-up service from your travel agency, it is recommended to take a taxi for short transfers, for example from the airport/railway station to your hotel or vice versa. Taxi rate in Vietnam is declining due to competitions, for a taxi from the airport in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City to hotel in downtown will probably cost around $20 US dollars.

There is another kind of taxi very popular in Vietnam, i.e. motorcycle taxi (xe om). On any street corner in Vietnam, one can easily find this service with the driver hanging a sign reads “XE OM” in front of the motorcycle. As “the country of motorcycles”, Vietnam is filled with this transport, from the north to the south, from mountainous to metropolis areas. There is no doubt that motorcycle is the main means of transportation in Vietnam, and “xe om” is the cheaper and more interesting way for tourists to travel about within the cities. One thing should make sure is that negotiating the fare before commencing the trip. Cyclos are also available for inner-city travel. You will usually pay more for a cyclo than a motorcycle taxi, but the pace is more laid back.



Cruises in Vietnam can be generally divided into three kinds: International cruise, Premium Cruise and River Cruise. Vietnam is a favorite international cruise destination, at present there are cruises traveling from Hong Kong or other parts of the world that dock at Cai Lan port in Halong Bay, from where it is easy to take a taxi to Bai Chay or Tuan Chau pier, to board a junk to visit the Bay or to explore further inland. If you are already in Vietnam and want to take a premium cruise trip, Halong Bay cruise is a good choice. Mekong Delta in the south of Vietnam is a place you cannot miss on a river cruise. Though cruise is not as widely popular as other forms of transportation in Vietnam, taking an attractive cruise trip you will find it is a unique experience on your Vietnam tour.


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