PROBLEMS ENCOUNTERED BY VISITORS TO HANOI
Gecko Graden Hostel is located in the heart of the city of HANOI, it has a good service and proper facilities and well managed by our very own helpful, enthusiastic staff. That all make us become the popular midrange hotels in the Old Quarter of Hanoi
1. Taxi airport scams.
At the airport, our staff will hang up the pick up sign with our guests’ names, some taxi drivers copy the names and write them down in his own paper, and then quickly stand far in front of our staff and try to convince you go with them. Be careful! The following are some situations that can happen:
- On the way to the hotel, if the taxi driver says that Gecko Graden Hostel is booked out and recommends you or drives you straight to another hotel, please do not believe him. What you should do is to contact the hotel’s number (84 4) 38244 999 and ask for information.
- The taxi driver tries to take your money every time you pass bridges and blames it for toll fees. Don’t pay him anything as the toll fee is included in the price which should be paid once you reach the hotel with the help of the reception.
- The taxi driver drops you off in front of our hotel and if there is a person running to you, telling you that “Gecko Graden Hostel is full, please follow me to the second hotel”, please do not believe him. You should come in and ask the reception for exact information.
- If the taxi driver asks for any additional payment, just ignore him.
The official currency in Vietnam is Dong. US Dollars and Euro are also accepted in many of big shops and restaurants. Various other currencies are easy to exchange in banks and even at the reception desk of Bella Rosa Hotel
Make sure that the Vietnamese notes you receive are not torn, because shops and restaurants will not accept them. The largest denomination is currently 500,000 dong (approx. US$ 26). Be careful because the 20,000 notes look only slightly different from the 500,000 one but the value is a big gap. You should keep all 500,000 dong notes separate from your other dong notes to avoid confusion.
Electricity is 220 volts and 50Hz. Plugs are often either two squarepins or two roundpins. Three-pin plugs can be found in some certain places.
You should bargain when you shop in local markets. For example, if the shop owner says 100 dollars, you should ask for 40, and then work for an agreement from there. If negotiations are not working, start to walk away and in the vast majority of cases, the shop owners will call you back and give you their best price.
The traffic in Hanoi is amazing but also seems scaring. There is plenty of traffic particularly during rush hour (7am to 9am and 4.30pm to 6.30pm). Try to stay off the roads in that period or take into account that travel at those times will take longer. When crossing the road, do not make the sheer numbers of motorbikes overwhelms you, just walk slowly and carefully.