Vietnam currency and costs

Published:  10:10 Saturday - October 29, 2016

Vietnam currency and costs

Before traveling to Vietnam, you should find some information about money and costs in Vietnam. So you can be easy to buy something with suitable price and save your money.

Vietnam's currency

Vietnam’s currency is dong issued by State Bank of Vietnam. Abbreviated form: “VND” before the amount or “d” after the amount.

Small denominations include VND 200; 500; 1000; 2000; 5000 in both coin and paper notes though coin is more popular. Bigger denominations include VND 10,000; 20,000; 50,000; 100,000; 200,000; 500,000 in both polymer and normal paper notes.

Note: Vietnam uses colon “,” as decimal symbol and “.” in digit grouping (opposite to the US standards).

Cheques issued in Vietnam include VND 500,000 and 1000,000 - mostly used for commercial transaction in the South.


Exchange money

Exchange rate is virtually quoted everywhere now: banks, newspapers, internet, etc. Money is easily exchanged at the airport, hotel reception, official exchange bureaus or banks and all its transactional branches in big towns and cities. Thanks to low valuations of dong compared with other major currencies, it is extremely exciting to find yourself a dong millionaire in such an instant.

In small towns and remote areas, however, these facilities are currently limited or none. On heading to these places, hence, you should consider stocking up a bit more dong but not too much as you may have less chance to pour it. Particularly, there is no official exchange service in border crossings other than black market which must be dealt with high alertness. Miscalculation and fake money may cost you a lot.

Generally, all major currencies can be converted into dong without any hassle but American dollar is normally much more preferred. It is wise to cash your traveler cheques into US dollar in Vietcombank or other major local banks before jumping into anywhere. You may be charged 0.5 to 2% commission for this, still much lower than in black market.

Also, it is important to make sure that any note you take do not have any tear or look too worn, as it is possible to pass them to no one again. Legally, you are not allowed to bring the dong out of Vietnam. Actually, you have nothing to do with it. Thus, when you end up with a considerable amount of dong, reconvert it into US dollars before leaving unless you find something to pour on.


Method of payment

The most popular method of payment in Vietnam is directly by cash (both in dong and dollar), albeit the situation is changing gradually. More and more restaurants, hotels, shopping malls and supermarkets accept credit cards (mainly Visa, Master Card, JBC and American Express). Traveler’s cheques are cashed only in major banks in Ha Noi or Ho Chi Minh City

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