Interesting, thank you. I’m going there in February, so that means I need to pay or cash money from ATMs between 9:00 pm and 5 or 6 am local (Vietnam) time? Is that right?
Yes! That’s right Luderic
I’ve been monitoring this too (the USDVND exchange rate in the Revolut app) as I’ll be in Vietnam again soon. You definately need to check the exchange rate in the app before making a payment as otherwise you risk being seriously flogged, the difference is substantial between the times when the rate is good, and the other times when it is AWFUL (this is indeed during the week).
So either check the exchange rate in-app just before making a payment, or use an alternative like Monzo or Loot which will reliably give you a good exchange rate, even on weekends. Though if you get the timing right with Revolut, their rate is slightly better (but this rate is only available 25% or so of the time).
Or take cash and exchange it locally (good rates are available on USD and EUR, don’t know about GBP). Actually in Hanoi I got several percent more than the official/interbank rate when I exchanged my EUR, thanks to the currency controls and resulting strong demand for cash foreign currency. In Saigon this was not the case however, rates offered were at or near the official/interbank rates.
In any case credit cards are only of limited use in Vietnam, which is still very much a cash economy.
Watch out for high ATM fees though when taking out cash! Pretty much all ATMs charge fees, which are added to the amount you withdraw. Ie if you withdraw 2,000,000 you might find 2,050,000 on your statement.
As an update, I was able to get interbank exchange rates even on other currencies such as the AUD and Thai Baht when exchanging cash in Sai Gon / HCMC last week. If you can, take cash, you can try the exchange bureau on Nguyen Thiep in D1 (just of Nguyen Hue), the consistently offer good rates and have a lot of cash going through them.
I all but gave up on trying to use my Revolut card to pay in Vietnam, most of the time the exchange rate was around 22300 to the USD which is about 2% lower than it should be. Only every now and then was it around 22700 which is where it should be.
In terms of ATM fees I tried a few and I think the best are:
- Citibank, if you are withdrawing 6 or 8 million VND (you cannot choose an mount in between!). Fee is 60K.
- Agribank, I could only withdraw 3M VND but the fee is a fixed 22K which is very reasonable by Vietnamese standards
Avoid Asia Commercial Bank (ACB), fee was 55K for 3M VND withdrawn.
Sacom bank was 1.5% with a minimum of 30K.
Dongha is meant to have low fees but wouldn’t give me any cash.
Still, the best may be to stock up on cash outside Vietnam and exchange it locally.
No ATM use charge at MB bank (max. of 3 mio. VND / withdrawl) and VPBank.
I used a Plus Card (not Mastercard).
Additional information can be found here (scroll down to ATM section).
Confirmed. VPBank doesn’t charge you anything when using Revolut MaterCard in Can Tho. I just came from ATM.
Hello there! So the best option is to use the rev card for payments and withdrawals from atm when us forex market is open. I just receive my card and i am new user traveling to southeast asia,so i am very interested on this. Thank you
What do you mean when by “us forex market is open”?
You said that there is a mark up when forex market is closed. So i have to check when is open to withdraw money or pay by card to other currencies to take the best price available. Is this correct?
Thank you for clarifying this. You’re referring to the weekend markup
I’m trying to locate how to change my GBP into VND for my trip in 2 days.
Is there any way to do it because I can’t find the option in the app?
Hey there @Kailh
You can not hold VND with but you can spend it.
The money will be automagically converted at the current rate
That all makes sense now, thank you!
No Andreas, the weekend mark-up is one thing.
But during the week, most of the time the USDVND exchange rate is not the 22700 it should be (the VND is pegged to the dollar using a managed exchange rate mechanism by the SBV).
Most of the time Revolut only gives around 22300 per USD. As others have observed, the correct exchange rate of near 22700 coincides with the opening hours of the Chicago exchange.
Thanks for the tip!
I withdrew 5M today at vp bank on Ham Nghi in Saigon and indeed no fee! That’s grand!
I tried the nearby MB (military bank) first but the transaction was declined.
But VP is all I need really and 5M per withdrawal is pretty decent for an ATM in Vietnam.
I’ve been living in Vietnam 7 months. The only bank that doesn’t charges is Canadian VpBank.
In Cambodia I was charged in all banks.
Hope it helps.
HSBC is fee free for Revolut, also ACB is free up to 3m VND with Revolut Visa, the Mastercard one is 50,000 VND per transaction up to 3m VND
Hi, we are traveling to Vietnam end of Jan 2019 and are first time Revolut card users. Can you pleasehelp us with any tips on the most efficient way to use Revolut in Vietnam. Our base currency is Euro. Some examples of areas where we will appreciate your advice are:
- Best ATMs to use & withdrawal limits?
- Should we use Revolut in restaurants & shops?
- Should we use Euro or USD as base currency in Vietnam?
Anything else that we should be aware of?
Hi, I have the exact same question as Eddieore, travelling to Vietnam in a few days being a new Revolut user, my home currency is GBP.
I don’t quite understand if it will make a difference if I use GBP or USD on Revolut?
I understand from various comments that is is better to use Revolut in shops/restaurants but how about ATM withdrawal? Is it worth using Revolut, or is it the same (fee exchange rate) as using a debit or CC?
Any tips appreciated.