Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Vietnam by the Numbers

The following are statistics I diligently compiled with only $150 as my tangible pocketmoney to spend for 4 days 3 nights in Hanoi, Vietnam.

I'm expecting to spend at least $100 but to my surprise I only need about $75 to decently tour Northern Vietnam in 3 full days. I have my international ATM card and 2 credit cards with me just in case of emergencies inlcuding "emergency shopping" like what I did at Vincom Tower supermarket. A supermarket near Hoan Kiem Lake does not accept plastic money so we have to go to a mall with a large supermarket. Additionally, my companion has more than enough $ to lasts us a few more days just in case we decide to extend our vacation, hahaha! ;p

I love Vietnam as it is one of the few places on earth where my hard-earned peso is worth a fortune. So in short, it will not hurt my savings that much.

I can't exclusively trust my memory so a few of the following might be just an estimate or assumption.

So much for the introduction, let's start adding:

1 month - time spent booking tickets, hotel, tours and looking for a personal tour guide
100 hrs. - total time spent researching about the culture and places to see in North Vietnam
4 hrs. - time spent at the office before going to the airport
$15 - cost of a taxi ride from Noi Bai International Airport to downtown Hanoi
at least 100- number of times the taxi driver honked at other motorists from our hotel until we reached Halong Bay
less than 15 - hours of total sleep in 4 days of travel
2 - number of taxi rides with a functioning legal meter
8 - number of times we crossed the streets fearing for our lives
6 - friends gained from other countries
2 - times I have been to Vietnam
1 - times I have been to Hanoi
1 - times I have been to Ho Chi Minh (Saigon)
2 - malls/supemarkets visited
125 pesos - spent for my roaming SMS/calls
2 - number of souvenir t-shirts bought
10,000 dong - amount given to a buddhist monk as a donation
60,000 dong - total tips given to all the tour guides/hotel maid etc.
2 - hours spent leisurely rowing around Tam Coc
$1- tip given to the old woman boat rower in Tam Coc
815,500 dong - total credit card purchases
1 - t-shirt with a big yellow star in the middle design bought
0 - number of fellow Filipinos we met while touring Northern Vietnam
0 - ghosts appeared before me (you can't blame me as the room we stayed was a little bit old)
3 - bowls of Pho (Vietnamese noodles) devoured in under 5 minutes each
18 mins. - longest ride on a xe om (motorcycle)
4 hours 50 mins - total plane ride
2 - total bus ride around Northern Vietnam
3 - number of ice cream bars eaten. Our local ice cream brands are much better.
20+ - times I said "WOW" as I'm so impressed with the beauty of Halong Bay and Tam Coc.
4 - hours cruising the world famous Halong Bay
2 - hours spent rowing in Tam Coc

TOTAL: 1 unforgettable trip which I would like to do over and over again :)


Lawstude said...

What a nice account of your trip. Hope to go there someday!!!

the donG said...

nice nice! looks like i need to consider visiting this place sooner. from the photos and your experience plus the cheap travel cost really entices me.

Anonymous said...

wowwwwwww.. i will go to halong bay someday... after cambodia weeeeee... at least i don't need a visa there than going to china.. weeppeeeeee