Urban transport in Vietnam
Urban transport in Vietnam is not as well developed as in Europe, but is significantly better, than in USA. This is due to the fact that everyone, old and young, are able to ride a moped, and almost every family can afford to buy two-wheeled vehicles. However, there are still city buses in Vietnam. And this is probably the cheapest way for tourists to get from point A to point B.
Despite the huge number of motorcycles, local residents still use buses. School and university students, the elderly, housewives going shopping use them. Also, many locals go to and from airport by bus. And for tourists it is the most budget way to travel.
It’s easy to distinguish municipal buses. They always have the number of route indicated, as well as its start and destination. Many buses are equipped with air conditioning and soft seats. There are check-takers in every bus. You pay them for a ride, and they can help you to get off the bus on your spot, if your explain them where are you going to. Most check-takers do not speak English or speak it badly. So try to explain what you need in very simple words or show your destination on the map.
In large cities, bus stops are similar to those known to us, but the stop can be located just under an unremarkable sign, so pay attention. At the same time, in small settlements one can board outside the stops, just stopping the bus anywhere on the road raising a hand.
Buses in Mui Ne
If you are staying in Mui Ne, it’s very easy to understand the buses. They run on the main street, moving from the fishing village to the nearby town of Phan Thiet and back. The bus fare is about half a dollar. By bus you can get from one end of Mui Ne to the other, for example, if you are staying in one of the remote hotels, but want to get to the center, where the biggest part of shops is located, or to the city promenade. Alternatively, you can head to the nearby town of Phan Thiet to take a stroll in one of the large shopping malls, see the riverfront, take a peek at the temple of the whale or just walk the streets to see how the locals live.
Buses in Nha Trang
It’s also not hard to understand the bus routes in Nha Trang. They run mostly in the center towards large supermarkets and out of town. For example, you can reach the famous Doc Let Beach by bus. Please note that the buses stop running quite early. Most routes run between 05.30 and 18.30.
Buses in other cities
In large cities, it is more difficult to understand the routes, but it’s still possible. For example, the tourists coming to Ho Chi Minh City know the bus number 152 very well, because it goes from the Central market to the airport. Planning a trip to one Vietnamese city or another, look for schemes of bus routes on the Internet.
Taxis, motorcycle taxis and pedicabs
The most popular tourist transport in Vietnam is, of course, a taxi. Taxi drivers use meters, their services are not costly, and they know the names and location of most hotels, restaurants and shops. The most well-known and inexpensive taxis are Mailinh and Vinosun. The smaller the car, the cheaper the trip will be. Mailinh has the smallest cars.
Some tourists use motorcycle taxi services. But for those who are not used to use motorbikes it might not be convenient. But motorcycle taxis in large cities are the fastest way to get somewhere, despite the traffic jams. In addition, a motorcycle taxi ride is 2-3 times cheaper than a usual one.
There are also rickshaws in some Vietnamese tourist towns. However, they have earned a bad reputation because of the overpricing and attempts to deceive the tourists, who have just arrived and haven’t got used to local bills. It so happened that the Chinese tourists are the ones usually using the services of pedicabs. The Europeans see this vehicle as rather racy entertainment.
Online applications Uber and Grab are also functioning in Vietnamese cities. You can use them to order a car from any point to any destination, even without knowing the local language. In addition, this type of taxi is cheaper than conventional cars with meters. Uber, as well as Grab, also offers motorcycle taxis, and they’re cheaper.