There are a few rules you should apply while taking an Vietnam adventure. For example, Being extremely reactive and able to anticipate changes are advisable in case of either a pothole on the road or a driver suddenly switching lanes without warning. However, one of the most tips that cannot be ignored is buying or renting a right motorbike (instead of ending up buying a medical insurance.)
Rent or Buy?
It will not cost you a lot to rent a basic scooter, just less than 50$ per month. Hiring might help you to save much hassle because there is no need for you to register your purchase and it is not your responsibility to make repairs in need.
However, if you are in the ownership of a resident card, buying your own motorcycle is a good idea to experience adventure activities in Vietnam. Moreover, it will be easier to register a used one because you can save a ton of time and paperwork.
Motorbike Driving Licenses in Vietnam
When it comes to the driving licenses and permits to take a Vietnam adventure, you are allowed to drive a bike up to 175cc if you have the A1 license. As foreigners living in Vietnam, you can have a national driving license by translating it into Vietnamese and then you will be granted a Vietnamese license without having to pass any exam. However, you are required to take a test which is quite easy if your country’s driving license does not include two-wheelers. All you have to pay for the A1 license is not more than USD 50.
Moreover, a genuine A2 is required to ride a “real” bike and it charges you over USD 1,000. If you want a lower charge, then you must get an invitation from a bike club. Obviously, the number of people owning a more powerful ride than the police have is put under the control of the authorities (police bikes in Vietnam have 400cc engines).
Finding out the right motorbike for you
You can give people a hint about who you are through what you drive. Here are some options for your cycling Vietnam tours:
Honda SH or Vespa scooter for look and style-conscious people
As a look and style-conscious one, you can drive along in an SH or a Vespa made in Vietnam (with a maximum price of USD 7,000), or spend at least USD 8,500 to import your own ride from Italy. SH scooters are higher than others, which helps its driver and his partner can enjoy looking down on others, inflating their ego yet slimming their wallet. However, you should remember that you might have to pay a bit extra to park SH bike where it can be seen during your Vietnam adventure activities.
Especially in Ho Chi Minh City, Vespas motorbikes are most alluring. An old-school Vespa is not too expensive; restoring and maintaining it will cost a pretty penny. However, you can find it sometimes hard to start and the backseat might cause you discomfort during your adventure in Vietnam.
Both types have the same stylish manner and similar accessories. For example, you can wear wide sunglasses, trendy clothes and most distinctively 1.10-meters tall leggy girl riding pillion like a praying mantis ready to devour her prey.
Price-sensitive tourists ride Honda Wave or Honda Dream
If you fancy a motorbike that is strong, economical and a friendly-fixer ride for your Vietnam adventure holidays, then the Dream, which has been the mainstay of Vietnamese daily life for generations, is the best option. However, your style will not be highly thought of because of the basket up front. Although you can have much space in order to store your raincoat and other goods, you will end up looking like you borrowed a ride of the old.
A Honda Nouvo, a Honda Air-blade or an SYM Attila for your young style
If you choose the Nouvo or Air-blade scooters to get an active travel Vietnam, you can have a well-matched pair and become outstanding among two- wheeled landscape across HCMC. This type is suitable to the new bourgeoisie and it has the same size of a Wave or a Future. The difference does away with the basket up front and has a nifty container underneath the seat. Its cost is reasonable and it is a convenient automatic ride in case you can get stuck in Saigon traffic jam at any time.
Now that you desire to take a memorable Vietnam adventure by scooter, you should research carefully and choose a right one.