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Ho Chi Minh

on September 25th, 2023 (JST) current information.
Furthermore, the details under "Visa" and "Passport" are for Japanese nationals.
This information is likely to change suddenly, so please contact the relevant official authority (e.g., embassy) for the latest information.

Immigration and Visa

Visa

Japanese citizens with a passport that is valid for at least six months from the date of entry can stay in Vietnam for up to 45 days without a visa. For stays of 46 days or longer, you can apply for and obtain an electronic visa (e-visa) from the visa website. You can stay for up to 90 days on a single-entry visa (US$25) or a multiple-entry visa that has no limit on the number of times you can enter the country (US$50).

Passport

Your passport must be valid for at least six months from the time of obtaining a visa (or upon entry if you do not have a visa).

  • Visa, passport, and other information is subject to change without notice. Be sure to check with the Embassy, Consulate, or travel agency.

Note for travel to Vietnam

During the immigration inspection, you must present your ticket for return or onward travel. When traveling with an e-ticket, you must present an e-ticket itinerary receipt.

  • Note that, in some rare instances, it is not acceptable to simply present an e-ticket on a computer or mobile device.

Quarantine

When visiting from Japan, it is prohibited to bring the following items into Vietnam.

  • a. Plants (including seeds), plant products, fruit
  • b. Mushrooms (excluding pickled, canned, frozen, or fermented)
  • c. Silkworms, cocoons
  • d. Insects, fungi, bacteria, viruses
  • e. Animal processed products (raw foods)

Customs

Bringing in e-cigarettes

As of December 2021, there are no regulations for bringing it in the country.

For bringing and possession of tax-free cigarettes

The following are goods that must be declared upon entry (as of March 2024)

  • Foreign currency equivalent to more than US$5000 or VND15 million or more must be declared. Although there is no restriction on the amount of foreign currency that can be brought in, currency exceeding those amounts that has not been declared may be confiscated when taking it out of the country at departure.
  • Either 1.5 L or more of liquor containing 20% or more alcohol, 2 L or more of liquor containing less than 20% alcohol, or 3 L or more of beer and other types of alcohol.
  • Either 200 or more cigarettes, 20 or more cigars, or 250 g or more loose tobacco.
  • 300 g or more of gold, including jewelry and raw gold.
  • Bank checks, silver, platinum, or precious stones worth VND300 million or more.
  • CD players, video cameras, radio-cassette players, TVs, mobile devices, and other devices worth more than VND5 million.
  • Prohibited from bringing in: Narcotics, poison, fireworks, antiques, and ironware as well as printed materials or videos criticizing socialism, pornographic magazines, and adult videos and DVDs. Plants (including seeds), mushrooms, and animal-based perishable foods.

Time difference and Daylight Saving Time

Time difference

Vietnam is 2 hours behind Japan. When it is noon in Japan, it is 10:00 in Vietnam. Daylight saving time is not observed.

Climate

Climate

Overall, Vietnam has high temperatures and a lot of rain. It has a tropical monsoon climate. However, since the country is narrow and runs a long distance from north to south, even in the same periods the climate can be quite different depending on the region. In particular, in winter (November to March) the north is cool enough to require a jacket, but in the south days with temperatures over 30°C continue. It is best to research the climate of the destination before leaving Japan to bring the proper clothing.

A temperature graph of Ho Chi Minh City and Tokyo

A precipitation graph of Ho Chi Minh City and Tokyo

  • Monthly average temperature and precipitation

    The average maximum temperature in Tokyo and Ho Chi Minh, The average minimum temperature in Tokyo and Ho Chi Minh

    month The average maximum temperature in Tokyo The average minimum temperature in Tokyo The average maximum temperature in Ho Chi Minh The average minimum temperature in Ho Chi Minh
    Jan. 10℃ 2℃ 31℃ 21℃
    Feb. 10℃ 2℃ 32℃ 22℃
    Mar. 13℃ 5℃ 33℃ 23℃
    Apr. 18℃ 10℃ 34℃ 24℃
    May 23℃ 15℃ 33℃ 24℃
    Jun. 25℃ 18℃ 33℃ 23℃
    Jul. 28℃ 23℃ 32℃ 23℃
    Aug. 31℃ 24℃ 32℃ 23℃
    Sep. 27℃ 21℃ 31℃ 23℃
    Oct. 23℃ 15℃ 30℃ 22℃
    Nov. 17℃ 10℃ 30℃ 21℃
    Dec. 13℃ 5℃ 30℃ 20℃

    The average precipitation in Tokyo and Ho Chi Minh

    month The average precipitation in Tokyo The average precipitation in Ho Chi Minh
    Jan. 50mm 30mm
    Feb. 50mm 10mm
    Mar. 110mm 10mm
    Apr. 120mm 60mm
    May 130mm 250mm
    Jun. 170mm 310mm
    Jul. 150mm 280mm
    Aug. 160mm 260mm
    Sep. 210mm 330mm
    Oct. 200mm 260mm
    Nov. 90mm 110mm
    Dec. 50mm 20mm

Currency and Exchange Rate, Tax, Currency exchange, Tip

Currency and Exchange Rate

The banknotes have many digits and similar pictures, so be careful not to mix them up. Coins are hardly ever in use.

Banknotes come in 12 denominations: 100, 200, 500, 1000, 2000, 5000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000, 100,000, 200,000, and 500,000. The 100 and 200 dong notes are not widely circulated. Coins come in five denominations: 200, 500, 1000, 2000, and 5000 dong. These are no longer in circulation. US dollars were also in circulation, but as of the beginning of 2012, restrictions were put on displaying prices and making/receiving payments in foreign currency. Currently, payment in places other than those designated is forbidden.
VND1000 is approx. JPY6.03 (As of March 18, 2024)

Tax

A value added tax (VAT) of 10-20% is normally charged, but travelers typically only pay VAT at places such as mid- and high-class hotels, restaurants, and cafes. In July 2014, VAT refund system was put into place. There are VAT refund counters at the airports and terminals that serve international flights where it is possible to receive refund if procedures are followed, so we recommend that you acquire an understanding of the system before using it.

Tip

Vietnam does not have a custom of tipping, so basically it is not necessary.

  • Restaurants: Not required in restaurants other than upscale restaurants. Even in upscale restaurants, it is unnecessary when a service charge is added.
  • Hotels: Tip bellhops and room service approx. VND20000 to VND50000.
  • Tour guide and driver: For private tours, give a tip of at least 100,000 dong per day of the tour. You don't need to give a tip on a cheap tour.
  • Massage and spa: If you do give a tip, 50,000 to 100,000 dong is about right. In some cases the tip and/or service fee is included in the tour charge, so check beforehand.
  • Taxies: Not necessary.

Voltage and plug

Voltage

A conversion adapter for Type A, Type C, and Type SE

Voltage is almost always 220V, but in rare cases it is 110V. The cycle is 50Hz. Many plugs are a combination of Type A and Type C. There are Type A, Type C, and in rare instances, Type SE and Type BF plugs. Using 100V electric products from Japan requires a transformer. Even Japanese electric products that handle 100V to 240V can be used without a transformer, so read the instruction manual for electronic products you plan to use. However, be aware that even products that can handle 100V to 240V require a conversion adapter for the plug.

Video and DVD

Video and DVD

Do not forget to check the region code when purchasing a DVD. The DVD region code for Vietnam is 3, while it is 2 for Japan. DVDs cannot be viewed in Japan unless they are clearly marked “All code” (but can be viewed on a computer even if region code 3). Be aware that bringing copied DVDs of animes and movies, etc. into Japan is not permitted.

Mail

Mail

Post Office Business Hours

Though it differs slightly for each post office, usually they are open from 7:00 to 19:00. Some post offices are also open on Sundays.

Postal Fees

Airmail to Japan costs VND30,000 up to 20 g. Parcel of parcels up to 1kg cost VND475,600. An extra VND185,800 is added for every 1kg thereafter.

Phone Call

How to phone

Telephoning Japan from Vietnam

Ex. When calling Tokyo (03) 1234-5678
STEP1

dial 00 (International telephone identification number)

STEP2

81 (Country Code, Japan )

STEP3

3 (Remove the first 0 for area codes)

STEP4

1234-5678(Other parties telephone number)

Telephoning Vietnam from Japan

Ex. When calling Ho Chi Minh(08) 1234-5678
STEP1

International Telephone Company No.

  • 0033 (NTT Communications)
  • 0061 (SoftBank)
  • Not required on a mobile phone
STEP2

010 (International Identification No.)

For the three cell phone carriers, hold down 0 until + appears, then add the country code and the phone number your wish to dial.

STEP3

84 (Country Code, Vietnam)

STEP4

8 (Area code, remove first 0)

STEP5

1234-5678 (Other parties telephone number)

Holiday / National holiday

Holiday / National holiday

2024

  • January 1: New Year’s Day
  • February 10: Tet (Vietnamese New Year)*1
  • April 18: Anniversary of the Death of Hung Vuong
  • April 30: Reunification Day
  • May 1: May Day
  • September 2: National Day (Independence Day)*2
  • *1.Five days are allotted for the Tet holiday every year, and about one week before and after Tet is also a holiday, though the exact length varies from year to year. Tet 2025 will fall on January 29. 2025.
  • *2.This holiday has been two days long since 2021.

Language

Language

The official language is Vietnamese, which is written using characters called Quoc Ngu. English is often understood in places that cater to foreigners and travelers. Some stores also understand Japanese. In addition, some senior citizens understand French and Russian.

Business hours, etc

Business hours

Below are guidelines for general business hours, which differ by shop, restaurant, etc.

Banks

Mon. to Fri. 8:00 to 11:30, 13:00 to 16:00, closed on Sun., holidays. Some places are open on Sat. Currency can be exchanged during business hours.

Shops

8:00 to 21:00.

Restaurants

10:00 to 22:00, but some places open at 6:00 and close at 24:00. In addition, many upscale restaurants close for 2 to 3 hours between lunchtime and dinnertime.

Age Limit

Neither tobacco nor alcohol is regulated by law. Their consumption is socially acceptable around the age of 18.A license is required for driving motorcycles that are over 50 cc, and this rule applies to foreign nationals as well. In addition, as Japan and Vietnam are part of different conventions for international driving permits, a Japanese international driving permit cannot be used in Vietnam.

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