Below are Vietnam travels advice to help tourists protect themselves from thieves and other accidents.
Security and Safety
COVID-19 – Restrictions and preventative measures
COVID-19 precautions and restrictions are still in effect in some destinations.
These may include:
- Curfews, restrictions on movement, or lockdowns
- To gain access to public and private services and spaces, proof of vaccination or a COVID-19 test result was required.
- Before departing, confirm that any restrictions or requirements are still in effect.
- Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, occurs on a regular basis, especially in larger cities. Petty crime may increase before major public holidays, particularly Tet (Lunar New Year).
- Pick-pocketing is prevalent in crowded tourist areas, markets, and shopping centers, buses, and trains.
Motorcyclists steal bags and other valuables from pedestrians and motorbike passengers or drivers. This frequently causes injury to the victim.
Criminals are more likely to target hotels and tourist areas.
Bag slashing is common in congested streets and markets.
Avoid displaying signs of wealth and keep your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, safe at all times.
Even though violent crimes including such armed robbery are still uncommon in Vietnam, offenders have become more daring. Daggers and razors were used in robberies in Ho Chi Minh City.
Threats of physical harm are occasionally made in connection with personal disputes. If you find yourself in this situation, contact the local police and the nearest Canadian government office right away.
At an Airport
Individuals impersonating taxi drivers robbed foreign visitors at Hanoi’s Ni Bài International Airport by forcing them to withdraw money from ATMs.
Drivers who greeted passengers upon arrival with a placard bearing their name have also robbed them.
If you expect to be picked up, make sure your driver’s name, phone number, and license plate number are correct before you leave.
When getting off the plane, only authorized airport taxis or hotel transportation should be used. Authorized taxi companies typically station operators at airports who are in charge of monitoring taxi services. These companies print the taxi driver’s name and vehicle number on a card that is placed on the windshield (in front of the driver’s seat).
Food and Beverages Laced with Ecstasy
Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Accepting snacks, beverages, gum, or cigarettes from strangers should be avoided. These items may contain drugs, putting you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.
Vietnam travels advice also includes women’s security. Women traveling alone may face some form of harassment or verbal abuse. Sexual harassment and assault do occur.
Local governments may not always adequately respond to reports of sexual violence and harassment. If you have been the victim of a sexual assault, you should immediately report it to local authorities and the nearest Canadian office.
- Avoid Traveling alone, especially at night, should be avoided.
- Keep an extra eye out in less populated areas.
- When dealing with strangers or new acquaintances, exercise caution.
Credit Card Theft
Credit card forgery has targeted both tourists and expatriates. Avoid using your credit card in small establishments, and be cautious when others handle your card. Consider getting a second credit card with a low credit limit to use during your trip to Asia. To reduce risks:
Keep a close eye on how your cards are handled by others.
Avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature. Use ATMs in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business.
When entering your PIN, cover the keypad with one hand and check your account statements for any unauthorized transactions.
Gambling scams have victimized tourists in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (particularly in the Pham Ngu Lao neighbourhood). This scam usually begins with a friendly invitation to someone’s home to meet a relative who wants to visit or study in Canada. A casual game of cards will begin while the visitor waits for this individual. Even though they began with a small wager, victims have lost thousands of dollars in a single evening.
In general, public demonstrations are not tolerated in Vietnam and can result in severe penalties, including lengthy prison sentences.
Avoid areas where there are demonstrations or large crowds.
Obey local authorities’ instructions.
Keep an eye on local media for updates on ongoing protests.
Traffic accidents happen all the time, and they frequently result in death or serious injury. Pedestrians and motorcycle riders are frequent victims.
Driving standards are poor, vehicles and roads are frequently neglected, and major city roads are congested. During the rainy season, rain can fill potholes and make roads impassable, especially in the north. Traveling after dark is risky.
For personal transportation, you should hire a car and driver.
Only rent a motorcycle if you have a valid Vietnamese driver’s license and are familiar with local driving standards. Please keep in mind that insurance may not be included with these rentals.
Public Transportation of Vietnam Travels
Motorcycle taxis (also known as “xe oms”) are dangerous. Avoid using this mode of transportation.
Know the location of your hotel and nearby landmarks. Taxi drivers have taken unsuspecting customers to the wrong establishment in order to earn a commission.
Never ride in a cab with a stranger.
Accidents involving buses and coaches are common.
Several fatal boat accidents have occurred in recent years, including one in Ha Long Bay. Check that your tour operator follows current safety regulations.
When traveling by train, keep your ticket stub because it is required to exit the station. Passengers who do not have a ticket stub will have to pay the fare again.
Pirate attacks and armed robbery against ships occur in coastal waters. Mariners should take appropriate precautions.
Information on General Safety
Travel near military facilities is prohibited in some areas of the central highlands and along the border. If you want to visit a border village, commune, or ward, you must first obtain permission from the provincial police department. For more information, contact the appropriate local authority.
Unexploded landmines continue to be a threat in some rural areas of central Vietnam.
Never leave unattended food or drink in the care of strangers. Accepting snacks, beverages, gum, or cigarettes from new acquaintances should be avoided because they may contain drugs that put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.
Do not buy liquor from street vendors because the quality cannot be guaranteed.