cultural differences

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Daily Life in Vietnam, Internship experience, Practical Advice

Questions sur mon séjour au Vietnam – FAQs

Partez-vous bientôt au Vietnam ? Nous avons regroupé quelques réponses aux questions que vous pourriez vous poser ! 

Argent

  • La monnaie vietnamienne est le dong vietnamien (VND). Pour vérifier les taux de change, nous vous recommandons d’utiliser le site xe.com.
  • Vérifiez avec votre banque avant de partir si vous avez des frais de retrait ou paiement.
  • Il est facile d’échanger des euros au Vietnam. Nous vous conseillons donc d’emporter des Euros avec vous. Vous pouvez aussi partir avec un peu de monnaie locale pour votre arrivée.

Logement

  • Vous pouvez arriver 4 jours avant le début de votre stage – le jeudi – et partir de l’appartement 2 jours après la fin de votre stage – le dimanche.

Avion

  • Vous pouvez réserver vos billets d’avion dès que vous avez trouvé un stage et signé notre formulaire de réservation.
  • L’aéroport international de Tan Son Nhat est le seul aéroport de Hô Chi Minh – vous devrez donc arriver ici.
  • InternVietnam recommande d’utiliser notre partenaire officiel STA Travel pour réserver vos billets. Ce sont les leaders mondiaux dans l’organisation des vols pour le Vietnam pour les étudiants. Obtenez votre devis gratuit pour les vols internationaux requis directement ici.

Passport

  • Vous devez être munis d’un passport valable au minimum 6 mois après votre arrivée au Vietnam.
  • Votre passport doit contenir au minimum 2 pages blanches.
  • Il doit être en parfait état, ni taché ni déchiré.
  • Pensez à nous envoyer une copie de votre passport au plus vite. Pour que nous préparions les documents nécessaires à l’obtention de votre visa.

Visa

  • Nous vous donnerons tous les documents nécessaires à l’obtention de votre visa. Il vous faudra les emmener avec vous et remplir un formulaire.
  • Nous prenons en charge les frais liés à l’obtention du visa.
  • Vous obtiendrez votre visa à votre arrivée à l’aéroport. Il vous faudra être muni des documents fournis par notre équipe, le formulaire à remplir au préalable, deux photos d’identité , et de votre passport.
  • Notre équipe vous donnera plus d’informations 4 à 6 semaines avant votre arrivée.
  • Si le processus de demande de visa évolue nous vous tiendrons au courant.

Assurance

  • L’assurance santé et voyage est prise en charge par InternVietnam pour vous sur la durée de votre séjour.
  • Vous recevrez les documents sur l’assurance avant votre arrivée. N’hésitez pas à les réclamer si besoin.

Vaccins et médicaments

  • Aucun vaccin n’est obligatoire pour le Vietnam. Nous vous conseillons cependant de vérifier cela avec votre médecin avant de partir. Vous pouvez aussi vous rendre à l’hopital et prendre un rendez-vous avec le centre des vaccinations pour être sûr.
  • Vous pouvez trouver du paracétamol partout au Vietnam. Si vous avez des médicaments plus spécifiques, nous vous conseillons de partir avec un stock pour la durée de votre séjour.
  • En cas d’allergie ou de diabète, nous vous conseillons d’emporter 2 crayons à insuline ou EpiPen.

Valise

  • Copies de votre passport et documents nécessaires à l’obtention du visa dans votre bagage à main
  • Ordinateur
  • Adaptateurs pour les prises
  • Médicaments avec les ordonnances
  • Déodorant, désinfectant pour les mains et autres produits de toilettes
  • Pour les filles : des tampons qui sont difficiles à trouver à Ho Chi Minh
  • Pour les personnes de grande taille : emportez vos chaussures et vêtements. Vous risquez de ne pas trouver de chaussures ou vêtements à votre taille
  • Vêtements simples et formels pour votre stage
  • Un costume/tailleur/tenue classe pour un rendez-vous important ou une soirée importante
  • Vêtements de pluie et chaussures imperméables en cas de pluies intenses
  • Répulsif à insecte et crème solaire
  • Tongs ou claquette pour l’intérieur de votre logement
  • Vestes et pulls légers . En effet l’air conditionné peut être trop froid dans certains endroits
  • Masque anti pollution pour vos trajets en taxis
  • Serviettes de toilette

Téléphone et applications

  • Pensez à débloquer votre smartphone avant de venir. Sinon la carte sim que nous vous fournirons risque de ne pas fonctionner.
  • WhatsApp et Facebook seront les applications utilisées par notre équipe pour vous contacter durant votre séjour et stage.
  • Grab est l’application pour commander un taxi.
  • Vietnammm est une application pour commander à manger en ligne.
  • Xe Currency pour pouvoir convertir la monnaie.
  • Google translator ou un autre système de traduction.

Plus d’infos

  • Dans l’avion avant d’arriver il vous faudra renseigner votre adresse de résidence à Ho Chi Minh. Vous pouvez utiliser l’adresse de notre bureau. 94 Xuan Thuy, Thao Dien, District 2, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
  • N’oubliez pas de remplir vos documents pour l’obtention du visa avant de prendre l’avion. Ainsi en cas de questions nous serons donc en mesure de vous aider, sinon il sera trop tard.
Transportation in Ho chi minh city
Vietnamese Culture

Taboos in Vietnam

You may have some superstitions or taboos yourself, such as not walking under a ladder, not crossing paths on the stairs or stepping on a triple drain! However, these differ country-to-country, culture-to-culture. Check out some taboos in Vietnam below.

Some Vietnamese Taboos

In Vietnam, it is considered bad luck to travel on certain days of the lunar month. These days are the 5th, 14th, and 23rd of the lunar month. Many Vietnamese will not travel on these days!

No travel on certain dates

It is considered taboo to have the headboard of your bed face the road. This is due to the head of coffins facing the road during funeral ceremonies (usually held in homes.)

Another interesting taboo is for individuals to marry within a year of the passing of their mother or father. It is the case that many will change the arranged marriage date to outside a year of the date of the relative passing.

It is also important in Vietnamese culture to not face anyone with the soles of your feet. Whilst this may seem a fairly simple one to avoid watch out when you’re sat on a couch with your feet up!

Whilst these taboos may seem strange and unusual our taboo’s in the west probably seem peculiar to those in Vietnam. Throwing yourself into another culture is all about experiencing new things. The culture, the food, the history. Vietnam is a great place to submerge yourself in a different culture and learn about these new, obscure taboos!

Inspired by experiencing Vietnamese culture for yourself? Apply Now!

Knife and Fork vs Chopsticks
Vietnamese Culture

Cultural Differences Between the West and Vietnam

As can be expected when travelling to the other side of the world, many things will be different. From eating and drinking, to socialising and relationships, expect a lot of cultural differences!

Eating!

In the West, if you make much noise when eating it may be considered rude and bad manners. However, in Vietnam the more noise the better! When eating a particularly delicious bowl of noodles, locals can be heard slurping.

noodles and coconut

Celebrations!

Whilst your birthday may be considered the most important celebration in the West, in Vietnam it is peoples death day when celebrations take place. During this time they will worship ancestors, prepare a big meal and get all the family and relatives together.

Greetings!

In the West we have no particular routine of introduction, aside from maybe a formal handshake or an embrace with a close friend. In Vietnam however, shaking hands is less common, especially with the opposite sex. When introducing yourself, it is important to greet the elders first before then the younger individuals.

Cutlery!

As I’m sure you are aware knives and forks become a rare sight once you enter the Eastern world. You can expect to eat all your meals with a spoon and chopsticks! This may take some getting used to at the start but after a few meals no doubt you will be a pro!

Knife and Fork vs Chopsticks

Affection!

In Vietnam, you will rarely see husband and wife, or boyfriend and girlfriend showing affection in public. This is considered inappropriate and should be kept to private areas. Very different to the West where you can see a whole variety of PDA!

Want to experience Vietnamese culture for yourself? Apply Now!

Vietnamese Culture

5 Cultural Differences Between the UK and Vietnam

Introduction

When we talk about the differences between Vietnamese and English culture, we can think of many things; namely Literature, Style of Music, Arts, Religion, Language… and I will tell you some dissimilarities of the two cultures. This blog will describe some of the likenesses and contrasts between the UK and Vietnam!

UK and Vietnam flags

UK and Vietnam flagsMany Vietnamese traditions are beautiful to witness and you will really enjoy gaining a better understanding of life here.

Family structure

For example,  in Vietnam, children are the most important members and the center of a family. All of others (parent, grandparents, uncles, aunt) pay special attention to them. The central role of elderly people in the family and raising of grandchildren is a lovely tradition that gives the adults more time to themselves, seemingly keeps gramps feeling young and develops a community respect for, and connection to, the elderly. It is not uncommon to see old people taking their younger relatives to school on the bus, or playing with them outside, which always makes you smile on your way to work.

Drinking culture

There is a lot of cheap, cold, draft beer, sitting on a plastic stool on the side of the road.  That pretty much sums up the bia hoi experience.  Bia Hoi is a draft beer, made with no preservatives.  You will see lots of people sitting around, drinking, talking, eating, and people watching.  One good thing is rarely do you drink without eating, at least a little something – generally sliced cucumbers served with salt, chilis, and lime, or a fried, battered corn.s. Have you ever heard of the Snake Wine? It is quite popular in Vietnam. They put the whole snake (or scorpion) into the bottle and than pour the rice wine into it!

Bia Hoi Junction Hanoi

Nevertheless, a few cultural differences I have noticed are a little bit harder to get used to, and you’ll just have to learn to live with them when living in Vietnam.

 

Number 1: Munching and belching is normal in Vietnam!

The first cultural difference I discovered was on a business trip on my second day of my internship. For lunch, we stopped at a restaurant by a river and quickly I noticed the loud eating going on in the room.

Loud eating is considered as rude in most countries on the world. But not in Vietnam. You may also see people dropping litter or food scraps, on the ground as they eat, but again this is completely normal- you will find used napkins, food scraps and cigarette butts on the floor of lots of traditional Vietnamese restaurants.

But reassure yourself, not all the people in eat loudly though and not every restaurant is dirty!

This presents a further challenge; be prepared to eat loudly as well! It is widely accepted and interpreted as you are enjoying your meal.

InternVietnam - Food
InternVietnam – Food

Number 2: Wild driving

One of my favorite things about living in Vietnam is the madness that runs wild on the roads. I’m talking about scooters, motorbikes, motorcycles,electric bikes… tonnes of fun! In fact, because of all the unpredictable swerving, it seems drivers are more observant, with quicker reactions than most in the UK. Not to mention they get you from A to B super quick and so cheaply! Upon that realisation, and having taken many more taxi journeys, I have become increasingly trusting of the local drivers. However, I will welcome the orderly and comparatively peaceful roads with open arms when I return home.

On the other hand, driving in Vietnam is sometimes quite frustrating. There seems to be a lack of rules, or a lack of enforcement of rules. If you ask a Vietnamese person what the rules of driving are, they will look at you like you are coming from another planet.

Source : http://www.itchyfeetonthecheap.com/2016/06/02/how-to-drive-in-vietnam/
InternVietnam - Traffic
InternVietnam – Traffic

Number 3: Non-existent queuing

Being British, I have had queuing drilled into me at an early age and can’t help but be overwhelmed with annoyance if someone queue jumps. In Vietnam, however, queuing seems to be more along the lines of a polite suggestion rather than a strict social norm.

Many times I have been queuing for the cash desk in a supermarket and, as it reaches my turn, someone walks in front of me and places their items on the desk. You soon learn to become more pushy and assertive, as well as perhaps a little more impatient. Although it can become a bit of fun, I still can’t quite overwrite my innate desire to respect a queue.

Vietnam queue
InternVietnam – Vietnamese queue

Number 4: The nap after lunch

The Spanish cannot beat the Vietnamese when it comes to napping! Napping in Vietnam is an art and the people here are professional nappers. Vietnamese people can take a siesta almost everywhere from hammocks made of rope mesh and suspended by cords at the ends to under the trees and in the bus next to strangers, pavements, right on the concrete floors, pavements or motorbikes. At elementary schools, taking a nap is mandatory, little students have to listen to their teachers, transforming desks made with two wood panels into beds to sleep after lunch time.

Nap-time is when you can observe the very slow pace of life by strolling through the streets in light volume traffic, feeling the chilling breezes going through your hair, and seeing an idyllic Vietnam in the midday.

Source : https://www.mazevietnam.com/2016/12/10/10-strange-things-about-vietnam/
InternVietnam - Sleeping anywhere !
InternVietnam – Sleeping anywhere !

Number 5: Loudspeakers everywhere !

Vietnam has about 10,000 loudspeakers. Loudspeakers are a throwback to the 1960s- 70s war years between N. Vietnam and S. Vietnam, when they delivered news and warned people to get into a bomb shelter for protection against attack from the air.

Nowadays, these loudspeakers still exist, with announcements covering a range of topics like residential clusters meetings, avian flu prevention, healthcare information and sanitation reminders all over Vietnam through the daily 6:30 AM and 5:30 PM broadcasts in a male or female voice. They begin and end with some beautiful music sort of patriotic rhythms.

If you stay in Vietnam, I am 100-percent sure the loudspeakers will wake you up in time.

Source : https://www.mazevietnam.com/2016/12/10/10-strange-things-about-vietnam/
InternVietnam - Loudspeakers
InternVietnam – Loudspeakers

 

As a conclusion…

Throughout my time in Vietnam, I have attempted to fully immerse myself in the Vietnamese culture and have really enjoyed my time here because of it. Even these cultural differences that may be a little out of my comfort zone made my experience more enriched and interesting and, aside from maybe number 1, I wouldn’t want them to change.

If you want to join us in Vietnam for an amazing experience, you can apply here!