|Quoting HB-IWC (Reply 4):|
Last thing I heard is that Vietnam as a whole has not yet introduced the concept of e-tickets. That apparently includes all foreign carriers operating in the country as well.
Not true, my last trip to Saigon was purely on SQ
|Quoting Buckieboy (Reply 5):|
Yields might not improve substantially until western companies significantly invest in Vietnam. Having only visited the north in 2003, I saw no evidence of western manufacturers, lest not fast food outlets there.
Vietnam has embraced Asian brands more than the American ones probably due to the sanctions imposed by US which was only lifted in 1994/95. Therefore, American brands probably only arrived a few years after that. As I have mentioned in my trip reports to Saigon, the only American brand (fast food wise) that I saw was KFC. Otherwise another Korean chain Lotte Fried Chicken was all over the place.
Saigon / Ho Chi Minh City remains the economic stronghold of the country despite Hanoi in the north being the country's capital. The capitalistic nature of the South never waivered, only buried, during the years between 1975 (the fall of Saigon) and 1988 (embarkation of new market economy). It was rumoured that the brave Southerners dug up buried gold stashes after the country was opened up to the world.
If anything business wise, it would happen in Saigon first before spreading northwards. Hanoi seems tamed compared to her southern sibling with narrower streets, slower pace and even the architecture takes on a slightly more clinical slant with Sovet-styled bunker buildings dominating the surroundings.
Just take a walk down District One in Saigon, you can feel the air of possibility and vibrance. The energy is pulsating with the young ones raring to take on the world. But that being said, Vietnam has a lot to do to catch up. The country's infrastructure is still in its infancy and it is mostly always a frustrating adventure to get anywhere without your query being lost in translation or you getting ripped off.
Despite the ideology of Communism slowly dying in our world today, the fundamental ruling stance is still what polices the country presently. Although the "secret police" is seldom mentioned, they are still around and the locals do not participate in political debates. Even foreigners are discouraged from engaging a local in a discussion about their leaders (So I feel that your Prime Minister is a shithead... What do you think, Mr Nguyen?)...
So yes, Vietnam is a country that is teeming with potential (LOTS OF IT
) one might say. In fact, I do business with their people on a daily basis. Although not easy, it is worth it at the end of the day. Vietnam is the new Thailand, as far as I am concerned. Walking down the streets of Saigon brings back many vivid memories of how Bangkok used to be some 20 years ago.
Singapore to Saigon on SQ
Saigon to Singapore on SQ