What is better for a startup: Vietnam or Thailand?

    Hello! Our names are Anton and Svetlana, and together we are working on the project “ I love SP ”. Almost a year ago, we first went for the winter to Southeast Asia and lived for 6 months in Thailand and 4.5 months in Vietnam. We are often asked which of these countries is better? In the post we will try to objectively talk about our experience, and you will draw your own conclusions.



    Visa


    To come to Thailand or Vietnam for a long period, you need to apply for a visa. For short trips (to Thailand up to 30 days, to Vietnam up to 15) a visa is not needed.

    Thailand

    We made a single tourist visa in Moscow for $ 40. A visa allows you to enter Thailand within three months and is there for 60 days.

    To apply for a visa, you need a standard package of documents:

    1. original and copy of passport (valid for at least 6 months),
    2. completed form,
    3. 2 photos 4X6 cm,
    4. paid round-trip tickets,
    5. bank statement about the presence of 20,000 baht (approximately $ 600) per person,
    6. certificate of employment.


    Vietnam

    With a visa to Vietnam, everything is much easier. It can be done in advance in Moscow, and upon arrival at one of the international airports (in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Danang or Nha Trang), and in the country itself before the expiration of 15 days of visa-free entry. We applied for a visa at the airport in Ho Chi Minh City. In addition to a passport, profiles and photos, an invitation letter is required for this. It can be ordered online, starting at $ 10. At the airport, a visa is issued free of charge and makes it possible to stay in the country for 90 days.

    Renewal

    You can extend your stay on a single-entry tourist visa in Thailand only once every 30 days. To do this, you need to contact the immigration office with a passport and photo, fill out a form and pay 1900 baht (≈ $ 60).

    You can extend your stay with a single tourist visa in Vietnam 2 times for 90 days. Thus, in Vietnam without leaving the country, you can stay for almost 9 months. To renew it is enough to contact any travel agency with a passport. Cost from 40 to 60 $.

    Housing


    Thailand

    In Thailand we lived in Phuket and rented apartments in the central part of the island for 15,000 baht (≈ $ 470) per month. Electricity and water were paid separately. Internet - 550 baht per month. To the beaches of Kata and Karon go 20-25 minutes by car. The complex had a small pool and gym. The apartments themselves are 27 square meters. m with kitchen, workplace, small balcony, flat-screen TV and washing machine.


    The house in which we rented apartments in Thailand

    Vietnam

    In Vietnam, we lived in Nha Trang and rented apartments for $ 470 per month, a 5-minute walk from the sea. The price included water, Wi-Fi and cleaning 2 times a week. Electricity was paid separately. Apartment 39 sq. M. m, with everything you need, including utensils.


    Window view from our apartments in Vietnam

    Food


    Thailand

    There are many supermarkets on the island where you can buy anything you want. And in each area there are small 7-eleven shops. We spent about 4,000-5,000 baht per week on products. Sometimes they ordered food from McDonald's or Pizza Company at home.


    Tesco Lotus Supermarket in Phuket

    Vietnam

    There are 3 supermarkets in Nha Trang. They are much smaller than in Thailand, and there is little choice, but you can buy all the essentials. We often ate in cafes and restaurants. The average bill for two in Vietnam is 400-650 rubles, in Thailand 1,200-1,500 rubles. Vietnamese cuisine is less spicy and we liked more than Thai.


    Maximark store in Nha Trang

    Transport


    Both in Thailand and in Vietnam you can rent a bike, but we rode a taxi. In Phuket, a taxi is expensive, one trip to the store cost 300 baht (≈ 390 rubles), to the beach - 500 baht (≈ 650 rubles). And the same amount in the opposite direction.

    In Vietnam, a taxi by the meter. The minimum cost of the trip is 10,000 dong (≈ 18 rubles). Our apartments were close to the tourist center, with many cafes and restaurants. Therefore, we could drive to almost any place for 20,000 dong, and to the store for 40,000 dong (≈ 72 rubles).

    Medical and insurance


    There are several international private hospitals in Phuket. The treatment and care there is top notch. The cost of one doctor’s appointment is from 800 baht (≈ 1000 rubles). There are state clinics, where treatment is cheaper.

    In Nha Trang, the best hospital is somewhat reminiscent of our usual paid clinic, but the staff is friendly and speaks Russian. The cost of a doctor’s appointment is from 140,000 dong (≈ 250 rubles), dental treatment from $ 15.

    Before traveling, it is advisable to take out insurance. And if you plan to ride a bike, then you must do this. With a fall and a fracture, an operation in Vietnam will cost from $ 1,000, in Thailand from $ 5,000.

    Insurance can be issued online at cherehapa.ru. They work with insurance companies such as Ingosstrakh, Alfastrakhovanie, etc. To ride a bike, you must additionally select the option Active leisure / Moped management. Everything is made out on the site simply and quickly, and any insurance can be bought while already abroad.

    Climate


    We lived in Phuket from December to May, and the best weather was in December – February. This is perhaps the only time when you could do without an air conditioner. The rest of the days were very hot.

    In Vietnam, we never turned on the air conditioning, despite the fact that we arrived there during the hottest season, in June. A cool wind always blew from the sea, thanks to which it was comfortable on the street and at home in any weather.

    Beaches


    Phuket has a very warm and beautiful sea. There are several beaches. The most tourist one is Patong, we were not there. Kata and Karon are also popular. We liked Nye Harn the most, the quietest and quietest of all.



    In Nha Trang, one city beach with a length of almost 7 km. The infrastructure there is better than on the beaches of Phuket. There are some good bars and restaurants, but you can also find secluded places. The sea is colder than in Phuket, and the best time for swimming is from July to September. In October, the water becomes cloudy and waves rise.



    Adaptation


    In Thailand, it was easy to adapt to everything, and if there were any disadvantages, then we hardly noticed them.

    With Vietnam, it was the other way around, we got used to it for a very long time. The first thing that caught my eye was a poor socialist country. And that leaves its mark on everything. The second is crazy traffic from a huge number of bikes. Third - here you need to constantly be on the alert and always check the change, especially when you pay in a taxi. But if you get used to it, then Vietnam will open from a completely different perspective.


    Plain Vietnamese street

    Output


    Both Thailand and Vietnam have their advantages. But we remember Vietnam more. If you are thinking about living abroad, then whatever country you choose, you will surely discover a lot of new and interesting things.

    Where are we now


    Now we live in Bali, and we will definitely tell about it next time. In the meantime, you can follow our travels on Instagram .

    If you have questions about life in Thailand or Vietnam, write in the comments.

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