Buses, Ho Chi Minh City
When you arrive in Ho Chi Minh City, wander past the taxis and touts waiting outside the international terminal. Head towards the domestic terminal and you will find that there is a local bus, number 152 that will take you into town. The cost was 3,000 dong plus an extra 2,000 dong for luggage. We were able to get off the bus right next our hotel in De Tham street in the Pham Ngu Lao area. This bus ride was our very first taste of Vietnam and being up higher than in a taxi we were able to take in so much more! We had the locals on the bus in stitches as they watched us laughing and gasping at the chaotic traffic!
If you intend to visit HCMC from Phnom Penh, purchase the bus ticket from Capitol GH in Phnom Penh.
The guesthouse is actually working with Sinh Cafe in HCMC. The whole journey is devided into 2 pars. The first part is from Phnom Penh to MocBai (Cambodia-Vietnam border) and the 2nd part is from MocBai to HCMC.
You will be sitting in a van rather than a bus until u reached MocBai. The van depart at 6:45am and reach the border around 5 hours later. During this 1st part journey, they van will stopover at a restaurant for lunch. It is advice to take the lunch because you will reach HCMC in the laet afternoon.
Second part of the journey is after the stamp in custom, in vietnam site, there is a waiting house across the custom counter ( after you get your health cert). This is where you wait for the bus to go HCMC. The bus is now supplied by Sinh Cafe. The time from border to HCMC is around 2.5 hours. But the problem is, you have to wait for the bus to reach.
In my last trip, we crossed the border at 12 noon but the bus reached here on 2pm, that is why you re adviced to take your lunch first.
The bus will bring you from MocBai to Pham Ngu Lao area in HCMC where the sinh cafe located.
The ticket from Phnom Penh cost 6USD.
(last date took the bus - Dec. 26, 2004)
Saigon to Phnom Pehn, Cambodia
Bus Fare - 4 US $
Address : Hanh Cafe
158 Bui Vien St. Dist. 1 HCMC
Tel. # 08-8378750
Departure time - 8:30 a.m. (saigon)
Arrival time - 4:30 p.m. (phnom pehn)
Many times while travelling in and through Vietnam and Cambodia I have chosen to use The Mailinh Express Bus Company. I found them very handy to where I was in Saigon in Pham Ngu Lao area and are located beside the ABC bakery ..another great find..
I used this Company on many accassions and found the busses that I used were clean ,realiable and got you there on time..I travelled on these busses through Vietnam and also cambodia..They are inexpensive to use and just book the day before..There is a waiting room at the bus station and they will also look after your luggage.They have booking offices in Vietnam and Cambodia.
Location address Van phong 201 , Pham Ngu Lao, Qaun 1, tp. Ho Chi Min city. Vietnam
Ignore the taxi drivers telling you that there's NO BUS from the airport. Actually THERE IS !!
Keep walking towards domestic terminal which is located right from Intl. Airport. In the last lane you will see the buses. There fare is only 3000VND. Takes about 45min. to Bus terminal near Ben Than Market.
To the airport, from bus stop #16 ( sorry I forgot but front side ) same bus #152 is going to the airport.
Have a nice trip.
We booked a bus through our sweet hostel owner’s mother-Auntie (as she wanted her to be called). We took a bus of the Mekong Express going to Siem Reap, Cambodia. The travel is an enduring 12 hours. There are 2 choices of time of departure from Saigon to Siem Reap- 730am and 9am. We chose the 730am so we can arrive in Siem Reap at an earlier time. Bus ticket costs 420, 000VND. The bus also travels to Phnom Penh with time departures at 730am, 9am and 130pm and costs 210, 000 VND. We were asked to prepare at 630am because someone from the agency will fetch us. This bus is what usually the tourists take going to Cambodia. I don’t blame them since I had a very good impression of it.
The service is great! There’s an attendant who speaks a local language (I believe it’s the Cambodian local) and English. Once the bus started to move, the attendant gives an introduction and also updates the tourists to where the bus is heading. Snacks and bottled water are distributed and a little later, the attendant will ask you to hand him your passport.
Upon the arrival in the border, the travelers will be asked to get out of the bus. The bus will be waiting outside the immigration. The immigration is like a very simple office. The only problem I see here is when more buses arrive and unload tourists; the long line of waiting seems forever. After the passports are stamped, each of the attendant’s bus helps out the immigration officer by calling out the name indicated in the passport. When all the people are inside the bus, the attendant will call out again the name in the passport and that’s the only time it will be given back. The bus will be crossing the river by a big boat (that’s what I think of it) and that will indicate that you are already in Phnom Penh.
We arrived in the Mekong Express Station in Phnom Penh around 1245pm. We were asked to wait for the bus that will take us to Siem Reap so while waiting we took our lunch in their small canteen. I enjoyed their iced Cappuccino which costs 1.90USD. The canteen serves snacks like noodles in cups, breads, cookies, iced coffees & ice cream. The bus going to Siem Reap arrived at 120pm. At around 430pm, we stopped over a canteen for 15mins then arrived in Siem Reap at 745pm.
price is about $18 round trip from pham ngu lao street (saigon) to bus terminal in Phnom Penh. It took 7 hours to travel including 30 minutes at the border and another 30 min lunch somewhere there also. They serve free 2 bottles mineral water and a bun vietnamese style. Taste g0od though. Bus is aircon. Bus conductor will collect your passports and m0ney for visa-on-arrival (if applicable).
Schedule i took is 6:30am. Although there are other 3 m0re schedules.
Address: pham ngu lao corned de tham sts., HCMC
If you are staying in the central district there is not much use for you to take a public bus, except perhaps for the ride to the airport in which case you can take number 152.
For those who like to explore the surroundings/outskirts of HCMC, taking the bus is not that difficult as it looks but keep the following rules in mind:
- Standing at the busstop is not enough, hail the bus like you would hail a taxi (wave your hand).
- Get on the bus quickly, the do not stop for you, when driving slowly simply jump on and hold on tight :)
- If you pay on the bus for a ticket it costs you 6000Dong, simply sit down and the conductor will approach you and you get a receipt, hold on to it as sometimes inspectors check the bus.
- Tickets purchased in advance are only 3000Dong, you have a coupon (or a coupon booklet with more coupons in it) with 2 identical numbers, board the bus, once the conductor approaches you, tear the ticket in half and give 1 number to the conductor, hold on to your receipt.
- Getting of is like getting on, before your stop comes get up, walk to the door.. and get out. The conductor will warn you and motorcyclists wenn you can get off.. but still keep an eye out for those motorcyclists.
A great, cheap and easy way of travelling the whole length of the country from north to south (or vice versa) is by taking the Sinh Cafe Open Bus. They have an office in each major town/city and offer a daily service between the main sightseeing points of Saigon, Dalat, Nha Trang, Hoi An, Hue and Hanoi on modern clean buses with plenty of leg room and (where applicable) sleeper buses. If you go to their office, they'll explain everything for you along with a timetable and costs (this is also found on their website below so you plan this before you arrive in Vietnam). The first leg of my trip involved travelling between Ho Chi Minh City and Dalat which took about 8 hours with a stop for lunch along the way and cost me 100,000 VND (Jan 2009). They pick up and drop you off at their offices so it's probably best to find out where they are in each place before you arrive.
For anyone intersted in going from HCMC to other major tourist centers in Vietnam, I would advise taking an express "sleeper bus".
These buses are convenient and cheap (we went from HCMC to Muy Ne for $8), and travel as fast (or as slow) as a private car. They have upper and lower rows of bunks, which enable you to recline or lie down quite comfortably.
You can make a reservation in any travel agency in Pham Ngu Lao, HCMC, and that is also the area where these buses depart from.
There are good sleeper bus services between HCMC - Dalat - Hanoi, and between HCMC- Muy Ne- Na Trang - Hanoi.
One word of caution: the driver has absolute power to decide when and where to make a toilet stop! On our bus two pretty desperate girls pleaded with the driver to stop as soon as he could for toilets, but he just drove on for another hour before making a stop!
Windsor Plaza Hotel, which is in District 5, is some distance from the centre of the city. The hotel provides free Shuttle Bus Service every hour on a loop route.
The red maroon mini bus can seat about 12-15 persons and would seems insufficient given the size of the hotel.
At about 10:00am, the shuttle bus arrives at the hotel promptly and only 5 persons boarded the bus (including the 3 of us).
The first stop was on the side road of the roundabout (across from Ban Thanh Market). Second stop is close the Tax Mall (shopping center with fixed prices goods/products).
On this return trip, there was only 2 persons in the mini bus and one alighted soon after leaving the 4 of us in the mini bus.
We only use bus between cities and not in the city, so I cannot comment of the city own bus transportation quality but in general buses in Vietnam can be very old and crowded, so be prepare for that. The good thing, they are very cheap.
I took a Phnom Penh Sorya Transport Company bus from their office near the Central Market in Phnom Penh to Saigon. The buses depart at 06:45, 08:00, 11:45 and 13:00. The bus cost me $10 (December 2008) and took about 6 hours. Along the way you'll cross over the Mekong River by ferry and then over the border after about 3 hours where you'll stop for lunch at the border town of Bavet.
The bus No. 152 air-conditioned airport bus is the cheapest way to the city from the airport. For 3,000 dong per person plus a fee for bags which varies randomly, it will drop you off on the west side of the Pham Ngu Lao area, or at the bus terminal on the south side of the Ben Thanh Market roundabout.
Upon exiting the airport, turn right and you will see the bus waiting there. If not, walk down to the domestic terminal - about a 5 minute walk.
In front of the domestic terminal across a small road, you will see the bus waiting there. There is no signage indicating where the bus stop is.
If you ask any of the taxi wardens (in uniforms) they will point out the spot to stand and wait. Note: Ignore taxi drivers that may tell you there are no more airport buses. However, the bus is only available until 6pm.
The fee for bags range from an additional 3,000 dong for a smaller bag to 14,000 for two large bags. Try to have exact change or you will be given coins in return which is legitimate currency but many places will not accept.
Taxi cost us more than 300,000 dong from the city center to the airport, as we have no time catching bus going back to the airport
Here is our OPEN tour bus in Vietnam. The 'OPEN' ticket cost U$22 from Saigon up to Hanoi but you can stop at Mui Ne, Dalat, Nha Trang, Hoi An and Hue. That's means you are going to all these places for only U$22. They drop you at tourist area, so easy to get a room.
You can get a direct bus from Saigon to Hanoi, or Hanoi to Saigon but it's like 40 hours and the condition of the bus is real poor, although I didn't try it but I saw many direct buses carrying motorbikes, animals and all kind of stuffs.