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Expats on how to embrace both hustle and harmony in Vietnam

Expats on how to embrace both hustle and harmony in Vietnam

Friday, January 12, 2024, 13:00 GMT+7
Expats on how to embrace both hustle and harmony in Vietnam
International tourists visit Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre

It can definitely be uneasy, and even frustrating, to embrace unfamiliar cultures, traditions, and social norms in a new country, but certain expats in Vietnam have shared how they were able to make their journey here a smoother ride by keeping an open mindset and putting effort into mingling with locals.

Some of the top tricks expats who responded to a recent story on Tuoi Tre News titled ‘Eight Things I Hate About Vietnam’ gave to fitting into the local community included learning Vietnamese, immersing themselves in local customs, and building local relationships.

Randy Matito emphasized the significance of recognizing that every country possesses its own imperfections.

He advised expats to strive for a balanced perspective, considering both the positive and negative aspects of their environment, and discouraged them from complaining about the places they are visiting.

“Foreigners should always expect things that are unexpected. They are not visiting heaven. Vietnam is just an ordinary country, not a heaven,” he commented.

Sharing some shopping tips, Lance Coles highlighted the need to speak some Vietnamese and never buy products from the first stall while shopping at a local wet market.

Instead, one ought to walk around the market to ask several vendors for the price of the item they want.

Angela Le said in a comment that both foreigners and locals can be overcharged if they do not shop in the right places, and learning how to choose such places is a life skill.

Commenting on the story, John Kellenbarger, who is married to a Vietnamese woman and has lived in Rach Gia City, Kien Giang Province for eight years, said, “Please be happy with your life and enjoy wherever you live.”

Many others shared that learning how to relate to local people was a big factor in helping them become comfortable in Vietnam.

Brendan Davies, for example, found that little kids in Vietnam are fascinated by Westerners.

“If you give them a smile and say hello [to them], it makes their day and you also get a smile back from their parents,” Davies wrote.

Greg Matson remarked that his interactions, conversations, and jokes with locals have revealed their happiness in encountering individuals who make a significant effort to learn the language and immerse themselves in the local culture while visiting Vietnam.

He personally attested to having a positive experience in the Southeast Asian country.

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Hong Ngan / Tuoi Tre News


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