Vietnamese People are Human

Story 1
I rented a car through a travel agent, but the driver didn’t go to the direction I requested.

I complained to my travel agent. “Why didn’t you tell him (the driver) my destinations exactly? And now I try to explain to him, but he can’t understand me.”

Travel agent: “You didn’t tell me that you need an English speaking driver.”

Story 2
By YM I asked my travel agent, “I’m booking for A, B, and C. So it’s X USD, right?

My travel agent, “Yes, that’s right.”

Me again: “How about service charges?”
No answer.

Me again: “Is the service charge included in that X USD or not?”
No answer.

By email I confirmed: “I’m confirming my bookings for A, B, and C. A plus B plus C is X USD. How about service charges? 3%? X poin Y USD?”

Travel agent’s reply: “Don’t worry, my friend knows where you want to go.”

I filled in the forms he requested, printed them out, scanned, and sent them to the travel agent.

Travel agent’s reply: “Thank you very much for your payment forms. However, you forgot to pay 3% for service charge then I send you new forms.”

Story 3
Me to a motorbike driver in Saigon: “I want to go to this hotel.” I handed him the address.

Motorbike driver: “Two thousand.”

Me: “Two thousand? Two thousand dongs? Really?”

Motorbike driver: “Yes, two thousand dongs.”

Upon arrival. Me: “I’m sorry. I don’t have small changes. Do you have the change?” I handed him a five thousand note.

Motorbike driver just stared at my note.

Me: “I’m sorry. I don’t have small changes.”

Motorbike driver: “No. Twenty thousand.”

Story 4
Me to a hotel attendant in Saigon: “I read on your website that free wi-fi is available in the room. But, I couldn’t get any access in my room last night.”

Hotel attendant: “What’s your room number?”

Me: “Three, bla, bla.”

Hotel attendant: “Oh, the internet access is not available for the room numbers above three hundred ten.”

Story 5
Me to a hotel attendant in Hanoi: “I want to rent your bike.”

Hotel attendant: “Two dollars.”

Me: “Two dollars? I read on your web that it’s free.”

Hotel attendant: “The web hasn’t been updated yet.”

Story 6, 7, 8...? I’d better stop. I might scare you off from Vietnam. Do come to Vietnam. Do enjoy the nature. Do enjoy the food. Do enjoy the people. Vietnamese people are after all, human – just like anyone of us ;-)

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