Vietnam with a Vietnamese perspective
We used Indochina Pioneer during our recent trip to Vietnam based on the positive feedback the company was receiving on Tripadvisor. I was interested in engaging a local tour provider in Vietnam rather than in Australia because I figured they would have all the local knowledge. The booking process was very simple through their website – tell them what you want to see, what your interests are, what your budget range is where and when you arrive and depart – and they tailor a plan for your consideration. They encourage you to check out their recommendations by checking others experiences through tripadvisor and then revert to them with any changes. A couple of iterations of this and its all done.
Lam Duong was our consultant and he emailed and phoned us in the lead up to the tour. We met with him for lunch in Hanoi and he made contact at the end of our tour to make sure everything went well. He was available 24/7 during our tour and they provide a mobile phone with sim card during your tour to make access easier. We had to contact Lam only once during the tour as my wife left her handbag on board an internal flight and we did not realize until after the plane had turned around and gone back. Lam very promptly dealt with this through his agent and the handbag was returned the next day – completely intact with credit cards and cash. This is a significant benefit of dealing with a local agent – they take away those anxious moments.
All in all, this was an excellent trip. The accommodation was of a very good standard – well beyond what we expected in our budget, the arrangements and tour guides worked perfectly and there were no nasty surprises. I certainly recommend IndoChina Pioneer without hesitation. Its a great way to see Vietnam from a Vietnamese perspective.