How to avoid taxi scams at Noi Bai Airport

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In Hanoi, taxis cheats are probably the one thing foreigner complain most about. While unlikely to cost you a fortune, it’s still annoying to be over-charged or — literally — taken for a ride. So here are some advices about what to watch out for and how to avoid over-paying or ending up at a zero-star hotel in a back alley when you booked in at somewhere fancy.

1. You should book the airport pick up through your hotel. This is highly recommended if you’re arriving late in the evening, once the buses have stopped running, as even the licensed, supposedly fixed rate taxis hike their rates up then. All the hotels in Hanoi offer airport pick up services and transfer by hotel car. Transportation is also an important part of the hotel services, so you do not have to worry about the quality of car, driver and over-charge.

2. If you use one of the local taxis, get agreement on the rate before you get in by pointing at the rates sign and getting a confirming nod. If the driver tries to charge you more upon arrival, do not pay. Also, so not pay any extras for the tolls/parking – that is all included.

3. Please make sure you have the exact name and address of the hotel you are heading for, ideally written down in Vietnamese, and make it clear all share an address. If the driver takes you somewhere else you have two options: (1) get out and walk (2) refuse to pay until they take you where you want to go.

4. Some reliable taxi agencies we highly recommend: Mai Linh Taxi, Taxi group, Noi Bai Airport taxi and ABC taxi. They are usually in a good number and the price is reasonable which based on the kilometer clock.

5. Please make sure you have enough change on you. It’s a common trick for drivers to claim they don’t have any change. If they do this, pay less rather than more (if you have it) — no change, their problem, not yours.

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