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jbwalter

Travelled to 7 countries / regions

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Backpacked in Thailand and Vietnam in 2018

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Asia > Vietnam > Ho Chi Minh City > Useful Info
Updated on Aug 10, 2019 Useful Info

Best places to exchange currency in HCMC

There are 3 kinds of places in HCMC where you can exchange money. But if I were to pick one, I'd say go with the airport exchange shops. Their rates aren't that bad and unless you're exchanging thousands of dollars it won't make material difference

That being said, here's the info about the other options:

  1. Banks: you can go into any bank branch in the city and exchange foreign currencies for vietnamese dongs. It's sort of bureaucratic: you'll need to have your passport with you, the lines can get long, and you'll also need to fill out a form. But they're legal and their rates aren't that bad
  2. Airport exchange shops: they're also officially approved exchange places. You'll still need to fill out a form and have your passport with you. Their rates are almost the same as the banks in the city
  3. Gold and jewellery shops all over the city: these are privately run mom and pop shops that literally sell jewellery as their main business, and they're technically illegal for exchange purposes but most people use them anyway due to convenience. Their rates are better than any of the officially approved places (i.e. banks and airport) and they're quick as they don't ask for passport or forms. Some additional tips for these shops:
  4. Before you go, check the rates on google or something like XE to make sure you know what the best possible rates are
  5. There's not much difference in the rates between different shops so no point shopping around too much
  6. Carry fresh new notes if you can. Some places might refuse to exchange if you've got old crummy notes
  7. Know the risks: gold shops are officially illegal for foreign exchange, and in some extremely rare instances they might get raided (in which case you might lose money). Because they're not regulated the less reputable ones might also give you fake dong notes
  8. Some well known gold shops for exchange:
  9. Ha Tam Jewellery - this one is probably the most well known one
  10. Kim Mai Jewellery
  11. The shops around Tan Dinh Market