Useful Information
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Travel Handbook
 
Post

Every city, town, village and rural subdistrict in Vietnam has some sort of post office (buu dien). Post offices all over the country keep long hours, from about 6.30am to 9pm including weekends and public holidays (even Tet).


Shopping

Vietnam has some fantastic shopping opportunities so it is well worth setting aside half a day or so to properly peruse. Hotspots include Hanoi, Hoi An and HCMC, each of which has a tempting avant-garde art to sumptuous silk suits.


Telephone and Fax

Every city has a general information service (tel: 1080) that provides everything from phone numbers and train and air timetables to exchange rates and the latest football scores.


Time

Vietnam is seven hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time/Universal Time Coordinated (GMT/UTC).


Toilets

The issue of toilets and what to do with used toilet paper causes some concern. In general, if there's a wastepaper basket next to the toilet, that is where the toilet paper goes, as many sewage systems cannot handle toilet paper.


Tourist Information

Visas

Tourist visas allow visitors to enter and exit Vietnam at Hanoi, HCMC and Danang air-ports or at any of its nine land borders, three each with Cambodia, China and Laos.


Volunteering

For information on volunteer work opportunities, chase up the full list of non-government organisations (NGOs) at the NGO Resource Centre (tel 04-832 8570; ngocentr@netnam.org.vn;


Women travellers

Like Thailand and other predominantly Buddhist countries, Vietnam is relatively free of serious hassles for Western women. But it is a different story for some Asian women, particularly those who are young.


Work

Vietnam's opening up to capitalist countries has suddenly created all sorts of work opportunities for Westerners.


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