Hanoi is a city with an extensive bus system, perfect for those who seek an affordable way to get around. Here we have composed an in-depth list of local tips to ease your experience with the Vietnamese version of this communal transport.
To start our list of tips for taking a bus in Hanoi, we’d like to show you signs to acknowledge a bus stop in the city. Hanoi has thousands of bus stops and they do not always look the same. They usually locate in busy spots, such as the city’s famous attractions. You can recognize where the bus picks up by the blue signpost or the steel benches with an overhanging roof.
The blue signpost at Hanoi’s bus stops
Common steel benches seen at bus stops
My Dinh Station: 20 Pham Hung Street, Nam Tu Liem District
Giap Bat Station: 897 Giai Phong Street, Hoang Mai District
Yen Nghia Station: National Highway 6, Ha Dong District
Gia Lam Station: 9 Ngo Gia Kham Street, Long Bien District
If you travel by bus, you should first find the optimal route. You can do this by asking a local, or simply open the Google Maps app on your device, type in your destination and set the bus as your means of transportation. Google will give you detailed routes with specific bus numbers and where to find them.
Once you've located the pick-up points, our next tips for taking a bus in Hanoi is quite self-explanatory: hop on the bus and pay for the ticket. Remember to check the bus number carefully and carry small changes (VND 1,000; VND 2,000; VND 5,000; VND 10,000) for the fare. Below is a list of bus types and their fares in Hanoi:
Blue Bus: Serves the inner city districts and several satellite towns in the suburbs
Orange Bus: Offer shuttle service from Noi Bai International Airport.
Green Bus: Only runs in the inner city, connects passengers to routes on major streets.
Red - Yellow Bus: The most popular type of buses in Hanoi, connects the city and the suburbs, offers intercity services.
Bus assistants might not announce the name of the next stop, so tell the bus driver and assistant in advance to make sure that you get off at the right destination.
Watch-out: Hanoi streets can be very busy during certain hours, be sure to check both ways before getting on or off a bus. You get on from the front door and get off from the back door. However, some older buses may have broken doors, so you should get on/off through either door which opens.
Stay Alert: Be aware of pickpockets and scams on the bus or at the bus station. Put all of your belongings in your backpack and keep it within your sight.
Stay alert at the busy bus stops
Hold on to the Handle Strap: Buses in Hanoi have a handful of seats, so most of the time, you’ll find yourself standing. Grab the handle straps tightly, since the drivers are likely to break unexpectedly.
Be Polite: Acknowledge common bus etiquettes, such as prioritize seats for pregnant women, children and elderly people.
Look for bus tickets online to travel outside of Hanoi:
Traveling by bus is not only an affordable way to explore Hanoi, but also a small contribution to protecting the city’s environment and reducing traffic congestion. We hope that our tips above can help you enjoy an interesting yet safe journey in this beautiful city.
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© Written by Dung Tran for itourvn.com
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Would recommend bringing some small changes. The bus driver didn't seem to be happy when I gave him big bills