Vietnam’s tourism industry is still in developing process, thus, it is hard for the authorities to thoroughly control every aspect of tourism, especially overcharging. Hoi An is not an exception from this matter. “Xe om” – a kind of transporting service by motorbike – is absolutely convenient for traveling around cities in Vietnam. Motorbikes are small enough to thread their ways through heavy traffic. It is also the right choice for a true ride on Hoi An streets and the prices are quite acceptable. But sometimes, “xe om” overcharging customers still happens, it is okay for you if you pick a nice and honest driver, unlucky ones, however, can be charged three to even ten times higher than the price should be. They do it just because they think that if you’re are a foreigner, you would have a lot of money to spend.
Cyclo riding on Hoi An's Old Streets
To avoid overcharging, tourists should ask for a recommendation from the hotel about the pricing of “xe om” or any other means of transportation cyclo or bus. Once you have known the price and known you are overcharged, it is possible to bargain with the drivers.
If you rent a motorbike or a bike to travel around the town in Hoi An, you have to park your bikes in designated area with a small fee. Normally, parking fee for a bicycle is R1,74 ($0,13) and R3 ($0.22) for a motorbike.
Parking fee board on the street in Hoi An
However, not to worry, a tip to stay away from scam is you should pay the security guard the normal fee, they won’t do any harm to you. You should ask the parking fee in advance before parking your bikes.
One thing special about Hoi An is that you can get your clothes tailor-made in just a few days. But when you are passing by a tailor shop, you might bump into someone who introduces himself or herself to be a tailor shop’s friend or relative. In fact, most of those relationships are untrustworthy and they are between the owner of the shop and a broker. Hence, the price that you will have to pay is added the commission might up to 40%.
Measuring in a tailor shop in Hoi An
Therefore, it is best to do some research work before having your clothes tailored or even better, you can ask directly the owner of the store for better price.
It is highly recommended that you should pay attention while exchanging your money into Vietnam Dong or receiving change. It is easily mistaken 20.000 VND bill (about 11,74 Rand) with 500.000 VND bill (about 293,53 Rand) as the colors are quite similar.
You need to remember to count your money once or twice before leaving because they will never give you back the variance.
All in all, Hoi An is truly still a marvelous place to visit during your vacation in Vietnam.
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