Taking Uber in Vietnam: fun and cheap to get around
Uber in Vietnam is awesome! It really helps firstly with the language barrier, secondly with not having to deal with unscrupulous taxi drivers particularly from the airports, and third it’s a little cheaper than taxis. Note, you can also take an Uber Moto or motorcycle which is very cheap and a fun way to travel. It’s only available in Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi at the moment.
If you use the regular UberX, you’ll usually get a sub-compact car which is standard in Vietnam. If you’re lucky you’ll get a compact car to pick you up which is much more spacious. Usage is the same as anywhere, and for the most part I didn’t have any problems inputting destinations using my English keyboard. I always referred to the map pin to make sure it was actually the right destination.
Rates show up in VND and you just request a ride as normal. I always match the license plate and car type, you shouldn’t have a problem. Try to pick a quiet spot for the car to stop. Drivers spoke only Vietnamese most of the time, although one was chatty and did have some English knowledge. Usually I never had to say anything except hi and cảm ơn (Thank you.) I pronounced it similar to “gammon in backgammon.”
UberMoto is really the fun part. If you’re only one person, request a UberMoto and a Uber driver with a Uber t-shirt and Uber helmet will come up to you in a jiffy and ask you to hop on the back. It’s a super fun was to get around town, I didn’t find it dangerous at all. These guys are used to driving motorcycles from an early age. I simply held onto the back of the bike which usually has a handle on the side.
The best part of using the motorcycle is zipping through traffic. It’s much faster for the driver to reach you for pickup and drop you off since they can zip between cars. It’s also easier for the driver to stop since they can just park on the sidewalk while you hop on. Initially when I arrived in Vietnam I only took the cars, but towards the end the motorcycles were much more convenient and cheap! Approx 5 HKD per ride, lol. What a deal!
There’s another company called Grab, which is more popular than Uber in Vietnam. It’s based in Singapore, and from what I understand, basically the same. I didn’t want to bother downloading the app since I’d never use it again outside of the country and only stuck with Uber. But I did notice more drivers in their green grab gear.
By the way, if you don’t have an Uber account, feel free to use promo code theresat1688ue to receive free ride credit. The amount shows up after clicking the above link and the free credit varies based on your country. I suggest signing up in your home country and not Vietnam so the value will be higher.
Check our post for visa information to Vietnam as well.