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Vietnam is one of the hottest travel destinations in Asia. More and more tourists come to Vietnam every year because of its peace, friendliness and fast development. Tourists can enjoy visiting peaceful traditional villages, grand temples and pagodas or sunbathing on beautiful beaches in luxury seaside resorts. However, to enjoy the best of your travel, you have to know something about the art of bargaining in this country. Except grand hotels, big restaurants and luxury resorts where fixed prices are listed, you can bargain for anything in Vietnam.
Before going to Vietnam you should do some searches for a general idea about prices in Vietnam. The Vietnamese currency is the Vietnam Dong ($1 = 15800 VND). On the internet, you can easily find information about prices of going by taxi or some other means of transportation. However, for long distances, you have to bargain for a lower price because for some certain long routes, the price is not what is counted on the taximeter. If you go by taxi over a distance which is greater than 50 km, you should call the taxi company directly and ask for their price for that long route.
Going in a tour group arranged by a tourist agent is an interesting way to explore Vietnam. There are many famous tourism agents in Vietnam and most of them have their own websites. You can search on the internet for famous travel agents in Vietnam and book in advance if possible. However, if the online booking function is not available or you want to book for a tour when having come to Vietnam, you should ask for their fixed list of available tours and their prices in advance. Most well known tourism companies have their tours and prices listed on a large board in their offices. If you register for many tours of the same company, you can ask for a discount because it is a usual thing in Vietnam.
Vietnamese food is very delicious and well known all over the world. It is really a memorable experience to taste Vietnamese food right in Vietnam. However, you have to be careful when eating in restaurants. Even natives can be overcharged sometimes when they go to restaurants. There are some restaurants whose menus are just lists of dishes and don't include the prices. In that case you have to ask the waiters to tell you the prices of the dishes in advance otherwise they may give you a big bill with amazing prices at the end of the meal.
It is a fun experience to go shopping in Vietnam. The goods are usually very cheap and there are large selections for buyers. Apart from grand shopping centers where prices are fixed and written already on the tags, most markets, souvenir stands and street vendors don't have fixed prices for their goods and customers have to bargain. Sellers there always try to take advantage of foreigners whom they assume to be rich and have a lot of money. When you go to markets and souvenir stands, the prices they tell you are never true. The true prices are usually half or one third of what you are told. There are many sellers who can speak nice English. They will tell you that you are the first customer of their store today and they will give you the item at their buying price for some luck. Don't ever believe them. The "buying" price they tell you is always many times more than the real value of the product.
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