Anyone who has ever traveled to Vietnam knows that it can be a wonderfully rewarding experience, but it is also important to be aware of the potential dangers that come with exploring a new country. In this article, we will discuss some of the most common risks faced by travelers in Vietnam, and provide tips on how to stay safe while enjoying all that this amazing country has to offer.
photo: Anh Tuan
- What are the most common risks faced by travelers in Vietnam
- How to stay safe while exploring Vietnam
- Malaria and Dengue Fever
- Heat-Related Illnesses
- Food-Related Illnesses
- Petty Theft and Taxi Scams
- Tips for staying safe in Vietnam
What are the most common risks faced by travelers in Vietnam
The most common risks faced by travelers in Vietnam are malaria, dengue fever, sunburn, heatstroke, dehydration, diarrhea, petty theft, and taxi scams. In addition to the risks mentioned above, travelers should also be aware of the risk of being robbed or assaulted.
Malaria and Dengue Fever
Malaria and dengue fever are both mosquito-borne illnesses that are common in Vietnam. Malaria is more common in rural areas, while dengue fever is more common in urban areas. travelers should take precautions to avoid mosquito bites, such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, using mosquito repellent, and sleeping in a mosquito net.
There are a number of different anti-malarial drugs available, and travelers should consult with a doctor to find the best one for them.
photo: Văn Long Bùi
Vietnam is a tropical country, and temperatures can be extremely hot and humid, especially during the summer months. travelers should take precautions to avoid heat-related illnesses, such as wearing loose, cool clothing, drinking plenty of fluids, and avoiding strenuous activity during the hottest hours of the day.
In many parts of Vietnam, tap water is not safe to drink. In Hanoi city, there are periodic halts in the system to disinfect and many locals still don’t drink the water unless it’s been boiled. Bottled water is widely available and relatively cheap, so travelers should make sure to stay hydrated.
Vietnamese food is delicious, but it can sometimes be risky for travelers who are not used to it. Many dishes are prepared with fresh ingredients, but they may not be washed properly. Travelers should be careful to only eat food that has been cooked thoroughly, and avoid street food unless it is from a reputable vendor.
It is also important to be aware of the risk of food poisoning, which can be caused by contaminated water or food. Travelers should make sure to only drink bottled water, and avoid ice unless it is made with bottled water. If you are unsure about the safety of a food, it is best to avoid it.
Diarrhea is a common problem in Vietnam, and can be caused by contaminated food or water, or by a change in diet. Travelers should make sure to drink plenty of fluids, and if diarrhea persists, consult a doctor.
Petty Theft and Taxi Scams
photo: Duc Anh Nguyen
Petty theft is common in Vietnam, so travelers should be cautious with their belongings. It is best to keep valuables in a safe place, and carry only the cash you need for the day.
There have been a spate of phone snatchings by motorbike in Vietnam recently, where the thief will ride up to someone on a motorbike and snatch their phone out of their hand before speeding away. To avoid this, keep your phone in your pocket or bag, and be aware of your surroundings. Do not stand near busy streets while using your phone. If you do get your phone snatched, do not encounter the robber and go to the police instead.
When taking a taxi, it is best to use a reputable company, such as Mai Linh or Vinasun. There have been reports of taxi drivers in Vietnam overcharging, taking longer routes to your destination or refusing to use the meter, so it is important to be aware of this before getting in the car. If possible, it is best to ask your hotel or restaurant to call a taxi for you.
Tips for Staying Safe in Vietnam
– Take precautions against mosquito bites, such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, using mosquito repellent, and sleeping in a mosquito net.
– Consult with a doctor to find the best anti-malarial drug for you.
– Wear loose, cool clothing and drink plenty of fluids to avoid heat-related illnesses.
– Be careful to only eat food that has been cooked thoroughly, and avoid street food unless it is from a reputable vendor.
– Drink only bottled water, and if diarrhea persists, consult a doctor.
– Keep valuables in a safe place, and carry only the cash you need for the day.
– When taking a taxi, use a reputable company and be aware of the potential for overcharging, longer routes, and refusal to use the meter.
– Ask your hotel or restaurant to call a taxi for you, if possible.
Vietnam is a country where travelers will need to take precautions against mosquito bites, food-borne illnesses, and petty theft. The best way to stay safe is to be aware of these risks and take the necessary precautions. Traveling to Vietnam can be a great experience, but it is important to be aware of the risks and take precautions. By following these Vietnam travel safety tips, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.