If you are a traveler to Vietnam during the Tet holidays, you may need some tips on what that means for your holiday, what traditions are associated with it, where you can celebrate and which places you should definitely avoid.Vietnamese Ladys

Tet in Vietnam is the New Year celebration according to the lunar calendar and takes place next year from 09 February 2024 - 15 February 2024 The turn of the year is celebrated at the same time as the Chinese New Year. Just like Christmas, those who are separated from the family come home for a reunion after a busy year. Therefore big cities like Saigon or Hanoi will be almost empty in the first week of Tet. For me, this special festival in Vietnam is always a great experience.

Vietnamese employees usually have 11 days of vacation on public holidays, while the number of days off on National Day (September 2) is increased from one to two. If a public holiday falls on a weekend, an additional day off is granted as compensation.

Although Tet has the same origins as Chinese New Year, it is celebrated with unique Vietnamese characteristics that distinguish it from other variations of the festival. One example is the preparation and consumption of special traditional foods that have their own symbolic value (glutinous rice cakes, braised pork dishes, pickled vegetables and candied fruits, and more).

Vietnam travel during the Tet holidays

As a traveler have in the time of the Tet festival the great advantage that they can experience the diligent preparations. Throughout the day, large pots of flowers, flowering branches and gifts are transported. Richly decorated buildings give the cities a unique picture.

At midnight, new lunar year in many cities is launched public fireworks.

Working in Vietnam during the Tet holidays

Employers who require employees to work during the Tet holiday are often required to pay up to three times their normal wages. A customary New Year bonus, also called a Tet bonus, is often paid to employees before they leave for the New Year vacation. The amount of the Tet bonus depends on both company size and employee performance.

Many restaurants and shops are closed

In larger cities with tourist infrastructure (such as Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi), are better off as a traveler than in the countryside. Please note that many places are closed in the evening before the new year and on the first days. Some restaurants charge holiday surcharges.

Due to the very large selection of restaurants, cafes and shops in large cities, the supply is guaranteed during the Chinese New Year in Vietnam.

Tet holidays and travel planning

Red LaternsEven if you can take special impressions from Vietnam during these days, you should take into account that the days during the Tet festival are not the ideal travel time. During the Vietnamese New Year you have to expect some restrictions when traveling. Therefore, start your travel planning well in advance.

Here are some tips for planning your trip to Vietnam during the Tet Festival:

Shortly before the Tet festival it is very difficult to get tickets. Bus companies often charge surcharges during the holidays.

Train and bus tickets for Vietnam can be bought online. So that you do not experience nasty surprises during your trip or strand in a place you should book trains, buses and your flights well in advance.

Many Vietnamese spend the Tet holidays with the family and drive home. Even days before the turn of the year, tickets are no longer available for the Trains in Vietnam, Planes and buses available.

A reliable online provider for train tickets or bus tickets in Vietnam, with which I have had very good experiences so far when traveling in Southeast Asia is  Dort können die Tickets für Vietnam online gebucht werden. Beachten Sie bitte, dass bei der Onlinebuchung eventuell nicht alle Zugklassen oder Züge angeboten werden.

Many authorities and museums are closed

Who needs documents for the onward journey, e.g. For example, if you want to apply for a visa for another country in Ho Chi Minh City, you should organize this in good time before the holidays.

Government offices and state-owned businesses will be closed until February 15. Schools and other businesses across the country generally take the same break as government offices.

Visa extensions should also be organized in good time. Many consulates and embassies have closed for the New Year in Vietnam.

Many museums and attractions are also closed during the holidays in Vietnam.

Banks are closed

During the vacations, banks are closed and ATMs are not replenished. This means that you will not be able to get cash when Tet is approaching. We recommend withdrawing money at least 2 days before Tet and make sure you can survive with it for 7-8 days.

Places to avoid during Tet

Although it is tempting to visit the Perfume Pagoda, one of the most famous Buddhist shrines in Vietnam, during Tet, these types of places can be totally overcrowded and the visit a nightmare.

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How to wish the locals a happy new year in Vietnamese.

When you wake up on New Year's morning, greet your host with the traditional tet greetings from Happy New Year (Chúc Mừng Năm Mới.)

If you want to surprise your host with your language skills, practice and wish some of the following sentences:

  • An khang thịnh vượng (security, good health and prosperity)
  • Sống lâu trăm tuổi (long life of 100 years) - often used by children for their grandparents
  • Sức khỏe dồi dào (good health)

Where to go during the Tet holidays in Hanoi?

Hanoi will host fireworks in many places, accompanied by cultural and artistic activities to greet the New Year.

Some streets and main roads such as Trang Tien, Trang Thi, Hang Bai, Ba Trieu, Hai Ba Trung, Phan Chu Trinh, Ngo Quyen, Thanh Nien, the Dien Bien Phu and the Nguyen Thai Hoc Road are lovingly decorated.

Where to go during Tet Holidays in Hoi An?

Hoi An is a popular place to enjoy the festivities as many shops and restaurants stay open during the holidays. The old town is the right place, it has a dynamic atmosphere with lively festivals and street vendors along the lantern-lit paths.

Where to go during the Tet Holidays in Saigon?

A major event to celebrate the Tet Festival, which begins in the second half of January, is the decoration of the streets in the city center and Nguyen Hue Flower Street, which will be open from February 9 at 7:00 pm to February 15 at 9:00 pm in the Nguyen Hue pedestrian zone.

At the same time, Mac Thi Buoi Street, Nguyen Hue Street and Ngo Duc Ke Street will open the 2024 Lunar New Year Book Street Festival.

Hai Thuong Lan Ong Street, District 5 China Town

Whether you are looking for Chinese lanterns, silk flowers or confetti cannons, here you will find everything. Many locals go to Hai Thuong Lan Ong Street in D5 to buy ornaments. There are numerous shops selling seasonal decorative items here.

Flowers at Walking Street

Flowers at Walking Street