Here in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City) taxi, xe ôm and cyclo are plentiful and pretty cheap as long as you know how to do business with them.
First, as soon as getting on a Taxi, make sure to check that the driver starts the meter unless you agree to a price before.
Second, have some small notes on you when using these kinds of transport. Sometimes, the drivers use the quote “Sorry, no change” to round up the fare.
Third, search the place you want to go first on Google maps to estimate the distance and the route and have your driver understand where you want to go rather than just nodding or saying “yes” to everything you say then driving around – with the meter running.
If they can’t understand you, show them your destination (in writing or Google maps).
Xe ôm (motorbike taxi) is pretty popular and easy way to getting around. You can find them on many street corners, on crossroads or just walk around, they will find you and wave/shout at you to eagerly offer their service.
BUT make sure to bargain and fix a price before hopping on and politely turn down any attempts to renegotiate and only pay when you get to the destination you want.
One more thing, get the helmet and put it on (even though you might think it’s dirty or useless). Better safe than sorry!
Cyclo offers a quiet and eco-friendly way to sightsee the streets, the people. Unfortunately, nowadays, the cyclo drivers tend to overcharge tourists and foreigners relentlessly or sometimes aggressively.
If you want to get around the city using cyclo, our best advice is getting the service from a travel agency to settle down the price and avoid being ripped off.
These are the fastest ways to get across town without having your own bike, especially for adventurous people. But if you want a peaceful ride, you can try Grab and other transport apps available in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City).