We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Sydney, Australia
3 posts
2 reviews
Save Topic
Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Waiting outside Binh Thanh Market to meet a cooking tour. Approached by a cyclo as I had missed the group somehow. I continued to wait and chatted to him. He then said he could take me to the second meeting place, just down the road. I continued to wait and he continued to chat. Finally I agreed too with him for15000 VND, a price he set.

He took me down back streets, supposedly looking for the place. Finally met up with his friend, a motor bike rider. They had a lengthy discussion, then set off with motorbike in the lead and my guy following. After a bit, on a quiet road my guy said he was tired and I had to go with the bike. They knew I had a time limit to be at the meeting place which was approaching. As I got on the motor bike my guy asked me to pay. I took out my wallet. As I opened it he said he would help, took out 3 500,000VND notes. As I protested he produced a typed note saying cyclo city tour 1,500,000. He gave the bike rider one 500,000 and kept two for himself, about $75, then waved the bike on. I did get to the meeting place, so I guess in a way I was lucky.

I will never go on a cyclo again, although 10 years ago in Hanoi we used them frequently and always paid our guys well over what they asked.

My husband was also scammed about $30 in a taxi change, number of zeros rort.

Two major scams in 2 days. I guess coming from Aus we are pretty naive and not careful with our money or our safety, but I don't think HCMC is a safe city at all. I won't be going back.

135 replies to this topic
rural West Aussie
Destination Expert
for Perth
Level Contributor
24,874 posts
69 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Pity you didn't come to TripAdvisor _before_ your trip. You would have found out about both the dodgy taxis and the cyclo scam.

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
6,861 posts
173 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

that is appalling!

I can't say HCMC is unsafe BUT I rather walk over hot coals than take a cyclo and it's been that way for the last 7 or 8 years for us. We've never forgotten our experience although it was mild in comparison to all the new cyclo stories which are posted lately (and yours) obviously they are becoming more brazen & hungry

Nha Trang, Vietnam
Level Contributor
7,714 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

I did xic lo trips 20 years ago when the drivers were still honest, many of them were people who'd served in the army in the south and couldn't get another job after the war. One was a helicopter mechanic. The new rulers had no use for him.

Not once on dozens of occasions were we treated badly. Back then traffic in HCMC was much less dense than today. Some of the bridges were a bit tough for the wiry old fellows so I'd get out and help him push it over the hill. Nowadays I wouldn't go near a xic lo.

Sydney, Australia
3 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Thank you guys.

I did have a pretty good read of Lonely Planet which didn't call too much attention to scams.

I also should say we did take rides with some very good and honest taxi drivers.

Ho Chi Minh City...
Level Contributor
669 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

It is inefficient that Vietnam Tourism Board has no feedback system on the site. If you have time, you should write an email to the following address or your embassy in Vietnam to report the incidents: www.vietnamtourism.com/e_pages/tools/titc.asp

Hope the authority will take bold actions to ban all the cyclos in tourist areas.

I never let anyone touch my wallet or pocket anw. Always put one or two hundreds thousand dongs in pocket for quick money access, so you dont have to open your wallet all the time.

Sydney, Australia
3 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Thanks,

I just sent an email to the place you suggested.

7. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This post was determined to be inappropriate by the TripAdvisor community and has been removed.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

Our staff may also remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason. Thanks for being a part of the TripAdvisor travel community!

Removed on: 10:35 am, April 27, 2013
 
Saigon, null...
Level Contributor
64 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Very sorry to hear about your story. As a local person, I feel very shamed for what they did to you. I am working in backpacking area, so I have made many contactings to travellers. All the time I reminded them about the cycle / taxi scam.

You know, our local people never travel by cyclo. Nowadays they just concentrate in the city center where there are many tourists to make money. I am sorry but I think that 90% cyclo drivers are scam. The ones who are more friendly to you and speak English better, the less trust you should put on them. So pls stay away from cyclo in VN.

Italy
Level Contributor
39,683 posts
235 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

Never never never take a cyclo tour don't even say hello to a cyclo driver imo they're all out to scam tourists so avoid them at all costs, but at least you got to your cooking class in the end.

Saigon, null...
Level Contributor
64 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City

I have shared your story in one of the most popular online magazines in Vietnam. Many Vnese people have shared their thought and sympathy with you upon the post. For your info

vnexpress.net/gl/…

Reply to: Cyclo scam Ho Chi Minh City
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted
Get answers to your questions about Ho Chi Minh City