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Saving Money for the Next Trip

Saving for your next international trip is one that requires time and patience! To save up, one must understand that they must allocate a certain amount of their income to saving for vacation.

As I am currently saving up for my next study abroad experience in Rome, I have been placing 50% or more of all of my paychecks into a separate bank account that I have promised to myself that I will not touch until my trip this summer. This has proven to be a very good way of saving money because it has forced me to put money aside for me to enjoy later this summer while in Rome.

More tips and tricks to saving up for your next vacation may be found at:

20 Tips on How to Save Money to Travel

http://www.forbes.com/forbes/welcome/?toURL=http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexandratalty/2014/05/08/how-to-save-serious-money-for-travel/&refURL=https://www.google.com/&referrer=https://www.google.com/

https://www.lonelyplanet.com/europe/travel-tips-and-articles/76405

Remembering Your Trip

 

One of the most important aspects to commemorate a trip is to gather the many photos, ticket stubs, etc and form a scrap book or photo book from an online website.

To remember the many memories from your trip, I would highly recommend that you gather everything from your trip and to put it all into one book! This book will serve as a great way to reminisce the trip, and relive the many journeys of a foreign country.

Websites that I would recommend for making the photo book would include:

  1. Shutterfly
  2. Apple’s iPhoto Create Your Own iBook
  3. Snapfish

Additional tips to creating a photo book may be found at:
https://www.snapfish.com/photo-gift/home?fromUrl=/

https://www.shutterfly.com

https://www.snapfish.com/photo-gift/home?fromUrl=/

http://www.apple.com/macos/print-products/

 

 

How to Return

Now that you’ve returned back home from your trip to Hanoi, what is there to do now?

If you’re in the same boat as me, you will be wanting to return and explore even more of Vietnam as soon as you can!

Since traveling abroad is expensive, there are numerous ways that you may return for a much cheaper trip.

  1. Study abroad
  2. Travel in large groups
    1. Live in hostels
  3. Be more frugal in shopping purchases
  4. Walk around city versus taking the taxi
  5. Utilize a travel agent to find the best deal for airlines, hotels, food, etc

 

More information on how to return may be found at:

 

Unpacking Tips

Unpacking from Vietnam can be quite the long process!

To expedite your unpacking it’s important to work efficiently and in an organized manner. To ensure that all clothes, purchases, etc are unloaded, it’s good to work meticulously and to put things away in their proper place so that they can easily be found later. When unpacking, one should be able to dedicate 15 minutes so that they may neatly put everything away in its place.

After unpacking, one may experience a sense of longing to travel back to Vietnam. This is often very common, and is known as the travel bug!

There is always a new place to explore, and is what motivates me and many others to travel the world!

 

More unpacking tips may be found at:

http://www.goabroad.com/articles/highschool-study-abroad/5-things-you-realize-your-first-time-leaving-the-country

https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/go/checklist.html

 

 

Saying Goodbye

Saying Goodbye to such a beautiful country is one that will always be difficult to myself, and many other travelers when in Vietnam.

 

After spending nearly two weeks in Hanoi, I fell in love with the culture and people more and more everyday. Being able to connect to a country that has so much history and vibrant energy was an experience like no other, and one that I am looking forward for others to share as well. Hanoi is such a unique city, and has many cultural differences compared to the United States.

One of my favorite aspects of Hanoi is the sense of family and togetherness that is expressed through the citizens. Family values and relationships are very important to the citizens of Hanoi, and is shown through their actions and acts of compassion towards one another. Unlike the United States of America, there are never phones at the table for dinner and all meals are communal so entrees and appetizers are passed around the table for all to enjoy.

 

While saying goodby can be hard, it’s always good to leave wanting to come back to do more!

Ways to cope and handle leaving a foreign country may be found at:

https://vietnamtravelsweb.wordpress.com/unpacking-101/

http://www.goabroad.com/articles/highschool-study-abroad/5-things-you-realize-your-first-time-leaving-the-country

https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/go/checklist.html

Must Have VietNamese Souvenirs

When traveling abroad, it’s essential to purchase souvenirs unique to that particular country.

VietNam is very well known for their handmade silks products and custom tailoring. These vendors may be found in the Silks district and in local villages where the raw materials are produced.

Silk products that are very popular for purchase are:

  1. Scarves
  2. Wallets
  3. Shirts
  4. Pants
  5. Dresses
  6. Tailored suits

 

Custom tailoring is also extremely popular because it is very inexpensive and the tailors are extremely skilled and knowledgable in their area of expertise. They are able to look at a design from a picture, and reproduce the item within 3-5 business days.

Other items that Vietnam is well known for may be found at:

https://vietnamtravelsweb.wordpress.com/souvenirs-from-hanoi/

https://www.citypassguide.com/en/travel/vietnam/shopping/blog/top-7-souvenirs-to-buy-in-vietnam

https://vietnamtravelsweb.wordpress.com/souvenirs-from-hanoi/

Shopping in Hanoi

Shopping in Hanoi is one of my favorite aspects of Vietnam because it’s always fun to bring back apparel, souvenirs, and much more for family and friends!

While traveling in Vietnam, wondering upon various shops and pop-up markets along the streets of Hanoi is always an adventure and fun time.

As an American, the currency exchange works in our favor so it makes many items very affordable when abroad.

My favorite purchases that I’ve made at Vietnam are:

  1. Hour and a Half Massage – $5
  2. Handmade, tailored dress – $60
  3. Handmade, tailored dress button down – $25
  4. Hand stitched wallet – $2
  5. 100% genuine leather belt – $10

 

While these are just a few of my many purchases, I would highly recommend that tourists visit Silk Street and the city center to discover new and interesting vendors.

Additional shops and things to buy may be found at:

http://www.adoptvietnam.org/travel/first-trip.htm

http://www.vietnam-guide.com/shopping.htm

 

Transportation Tips and Tricks

 

Hello eager travelers!

Today I will be sharing with you all tips and tricks to transportation for the bustling city of Hanoi, VietNam.

Due to the craziness of the city, there are three main forms of transportation.

  1. Walking
    1. Cheapest form of transportation in the city. This allows travelers to experience the city from the streets and see the true perspective of VietNamese life.
  2. Taxi
    1. Fairly inexpensive compared to those in the United States. The drivers have a fair understanding of English, and are very knowledgable of the various attractions and things to do in Hanoi.
  3. Cyclo
    1. This form of transportation is a traditional form of transportation for the VietNamese. It dates back for hundreds of years and was typically used to travel locals to and from all across the city.  Currently the Cyclos are restricted in Hanoi to a small section of the city as more of a tourist attraction.

I hope that these three forms of transportation provided you with valuable insight to traveling around Hanoi, VietNam! Additional information on traveling in VietNam may be found at the following links:

  1. Views from a VietNamese Cyclo
  2. Traveling in VietNam Tips and Tricks
  3. VietNamese Local Transportation Tips

 

 

 

What to Expect Upon Arrival

Upon arrival to VietNam you will immediately experience a culture shock like no other.

Arriving to a third world country is one like no other. One of the first aspects of VietNam that I noticed was the temperature. The temperatures in VietNam are outlandishly hot and humid along with a very strong city odor. The temperatures and odor can be overcome over time.

Also, the traffic is completely unlike the United States. In VietNam traffic laws are a mere suggestion. Due to this, pedestrians must cross the street with caution, as the majority of vehicles are scooters that weave in and out of traffic.

 

For a deeper understanding of what to expect up arrive, please visit the flights below:

25 Things to Know Before Traveling in VietNam

21 Reasons to Love VietNam

 

Surviving the Flight to VietNam

Traveling internationally can be quite the endeavor for those not experienced with traveling for long periods of time. The flight to VietNam is nearly 21 hours in length + layover time.

To stay awake and entertained during the flight there are many ways to keep boredom away. These methods are:

  • Walking up and down the aisles atleast once an hour to reduce cramps and muscle tension
  • Eating snacks and meals that are provided by the airline staff
  • Watching movies and television shows on the screens in front of each seat
  • Taking naps
  • Looking out the window
  • Reading a book

The objective to surviving the flight to VietNam is to stay busy and take plenty of naps to make time fly by! In no time you will arrive at your destination!

More tips to traveling internationally and staying international can be found at:

How to Survive the Haul on a Long Flight

Tips to Flying to VietNam