Wondering what Vietnam accommodation has to offer? This guide will equip you with the skills to find the best accommodation for any budget in Vietnam — plus we recommend our fave places to stay.
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One of the best things about travelling in Vietnam is the readily available high-quality accommodation at bargain prices. No matter where you go, there are enterprising locals who have opened charming, comfortable and spotless accommodation for tourists.
There’s a huge range of places to stay in Vietnam.
You can find everything from $3 dorm beds right up to 5-star luxury resorts. However, most of the hotels are in the middle of the pack, with lots of choice in the budget and mid-range categories.
From our very first night in Vietnam — when we arrived by bike across a pedestrian-only border from China — we have been pleasantly surprised by the quality of the hotels.
Since then, we have stayed in mountain home stays, boho beach resorts, high-rise rental apartments, open-air hostels, and plenty of guesthouses around the country. Even in remote corners of Vietnam, like Dien Bien Phu and Chau Doc, we have managed to find great places to sleep!
That’s not to say that there aren’t any bad hotels in Vietnam — there are, and we’ve stayed in our share of those as well.
The tips we share in this post will help you avoid the duds and discover the best places to stay in Vietnam for your budget and travel style.
So read on for your complete guide to…
Don’t miss our detailed accommodation guides for these cities in Vietnam:
How to Find the Best Hotels in Vietnam
Vietnam’s tourism industry has grown and changed so fast that you’ll find some seriously out-of-date information on the internet about travelling here. I had to laugh when I read on the website of one of the world’s most famous travel guides that it’s becoming “increasingly simple to book online”.
I don’t know when that was written, but in the reality of 2020, booking online is pretty much the only choice for Vietnam. The internet here is some of the fastest we’ve experienced in the world and free WiFi is everywhere, including tiny open-air cafés in the mountains of Sapa.
We almost always use Booking.com for our online hotel bookings. Though I have tried a range of different services (like Hotels.com, HotelsCombined, TripAdvisor, and Agoda) I always keep coming back to Booking.com. Their site and app just seem to be easier to use, more comprehensive, and often cheaper.
So here’s a quick guide to how I use Booking.com to find the best Vietnam accommodation.
1. Start by filtering your search
After you do your initial search for the dates and location you want, you’ll discover the biggest problem with accommodation in Vietnam — there are too many options!
On Booking.com, I make abundant use of their filtering function. For Vietnam, I filter by:
- Review Score 9.0 or above: Vietnam has so many highly rated properties, I never bother looking at those with a less than 9.0 rating. If you’re on a tight budget, looking in the 8–9 range might save you money.
- Price $0–55 per night: Unless you’re looking for seriously upscale hotels, you won’t need to spend more than $55 per night in Vietnam. These days, we usually look for places between $15 and $20 per night, which is a big step up from the places we stayed in even a few years ago!
- Location: I sometimes use the Distance From or Landmarks filters to show hotels that are near the centre of town or near the beach or a particular attraction.
2. Find the right location
The abundance of hotels in Vietnam can make it tough to figure out where the best area to stay in any given city is. To get an idea, I use a few tools:
- Open the map view on Booking.com and look for the areas where the most hotels are clustered. This will give you an idea of where the main tourist attractions are located.
- The description of each hotel on Booking.com helpfully lists the distance from the town centre and from popular attractions.
- Don’t pick a hotel far away from the action just to save money. I like to stay less than 500m from the town centre, especially in Vietnamese cities where walking the busy streets is slower, more hazardous, and more traffic-packed than you might be used to.
3. Find your pricing sweet spot
Hotels in Vietnam are very inexpensive, so when deciding on your hotel budget, take that into account. For a room that might cost $60 in India or $150 in Canada, you can expect to pay about $20–30 in Vietnam.
My next step is to scroll through the listings, looking at the pricing.
Note that Booking.com lists their prices for the full stay you’ve searched, not per night. So if you’ve searched for 3 nights and the room is $20 per night, the price will show in the listings as $60.
4. Examine the pictures carefully
When you’re clicking through the pictures, take a careful look. Try not to be fooled by bright paint colors or flowers in the photo. Really look at the pictures. How big is the room? Is there a window? Is the bathroom decent? Does the bed look comfy or rock hard?
5. Check the reviews tab
At the top of the reviews section, you’ll see a round-up of scores for Cleanliness, Staff, Location, Value for Money, Comfort, Facilities, Breakfast, and WiFi. This is a quick way to eliminate accommodations who don’t have a good score for the things you value. For example, since we work online, we always look for a high score for WiFi.
Before making my final decision, I always read a few reviews. I especially look for mentions of noisy nights and uncomfortable beds — the two factors that are sure to lead to a lousy sleep.
6. Check the cancellation policy
My final check before booking is the cancellation policy. Most hotels in Vietnam have a generous cancellation policy where you can cancel up to 24 or 48 hours before you arrive with no charge. If you might change your plans, make sure to book a place you can cancel.
What do hotels cost in Vietnam?
The great news for travellers is that accommodation in Vietnam is still very affordable.
- If you’re on a strict budget, you can easily spend less than $5 per person per night.
- If you have a little room to play, you can fork over $10–20 for a hotel that even my Mom would be OK with staying in!
- For $40 or more, you can get a great boutique stay in most cities.
- A luxury resort overlooking the beach will cost you around $200.
Prices do fluctuate throughout the year as the tourist wax and wane. You can save quite a bit by travelling in low season, though you’ll also have to deal with more rain, more heat, and generally less inviting weather.
What do you need to know before checking in?
It is still necessary in Vietnam for hotels to register every guest with the authorities. Because of that, as soon as you check in, you’ll be asked for your passport. At many hotels, the staff will just take a photo on their smartphone and return your passport. However, others will keep your passport overnight or sometimes for your whole stay.
Don’t worry about it. That’s just how things are done here. Just make sure to pick up your passport before you move on to your next destination!
If you need your passport during your stay, usually it’s not a problem. Just ask the hotel staff to return it and they will.
Most budget and mid-range hotels only take payment in cash at the property. You’ll almost always pay when you check out, except for some hostels and cheap hotels where they might want you to pay on check-in. More expensive hotels take credit cards, although there is sometimes a 3% surcharge for using a card.
As far as I know, hotels in Vietnam cannot take payment through Booking.com — I have never seen this happen. Before you pay for your stay, double-check your Booking.com confirmation so you know what you owe. This is probably an unnecessary precaution, since I have never yet been overcharged for a hotel stay in Vietnam.
Vietnam’s hotel industry has advanced by leaps and bounds in the last decade.
If you read online that hotels in Vietnam are not secure or that there are other unsavoury activities, then you are reading very outdated material. I only mention it because I recently read some badly outdated and misleading information about Vietnam accommodation that was published by one of the world’s biggest travel guides — and I don’t want you to worry!
In the modern world of online reviews, hoteliers in Vietnam are extremely careful to provide secure rooms for their guests. It’s a highly competitive market and one mishap could tank an entire business.
If you’re staying in any highly rated accommodation, you really don’t need to worry about room security. We try to put our valuables out of view when we leave the room for the day, but we often forget and come back to find our camera, computers, and even cash sitting undisturbed when we return.
More expensive hotels do offer in-room safes, so if there is one, you might as well use it. Just remember to empty the safe before you check out!
$3–8 dorm bed, including breakfast
There are thousands of great-quality hostels in Vietnam, starting at about $3 per night. If you can spring for $5 or 6 per night, you can get a full bells-and-whistles hostel.
Hostels tend to have 4–8 beds per room and lots of perks like:
- Privacy curtains
- Bedside wall plugs
- Personal bed light
- Safety locker for your stuff
- Good breakfast included
Another bonus of staying in hostels in Vietnam is that they are great places to meet people. Most hostels arrange tours or fun events, like local bar crawls, for their guests.
Pro tip: When I’m travelling alone, I like to stay in female-only dorm rooms. Men are great — but they do tend to be dirtier, smellier, and louder snorers.
Best hostels in Vietnam
- Hanoi: Nexy Hostel – Comfy full-privacy beds, plus great spaces for meeting people and hanging out.
- Hanoi: Old Quarter View – Spacious well-equipped rooms with lots of social spaces and daily free beer.
- Hoi An: Tribee Bana Heritage Hostel – Located right in Old Town, this hostel is famous for their amazing list of activities.
- Ho Chi Minh City: Prei Nokor – Small and extremely clean hostel, with comfy beds and perfect location.
- Ho Chi Minh City: The Art Nice to Home – Cozy and friendly, on a quiet street but centrally located.
- Phong Nha, Ninh Binh, Can Tho: Nguyen Shack – In three off-the-beaten path locations, Nguyen Shacks offer bargain beds in a beautiful setting.
$5–10 bed in shared room, including breakfast
When you’re in Vietnam, try to stay in at least one authentic homestay.
You’ll usually find them in remote areas, like Sapa, Phong Nha, or Mai Chau. Homestays in Vietnam are simple affairs.
You’ll sleep on a mattress on the floor, often alongside other travellers. Some homestays provide privacy curtains between each mattress. The bathroom is out back in a small outhouse building, but with full plumbing. Often, the bathroom will double as a home to local spiders and other insects — you have been warned!
Homestay kitchens are often outdoors too, with cooking being done by the family on portable electric stovetop and charcoal fire.
Recently, there has been a rise in small hotels calling themselves homestays when they are really just hotels built on top of or near to where the owners sleep. These places are fine and we’ve stayed in several, but they are not to be confused with real homestays.
Best homestays in Vietnam
- Sapa Homestays – If you book an overnight hiking tour of Sapa, you’ll get to stay in a family farm homestay in the mountains. Such a great experience!
- Mai Chau Homestays – The best way to find a cozy homestay in Mai Chau is to show up in the old village and ask. Someone will undoubtedly lead you from the bus to their homestay. If you don’t like it, keep looking around until you find one that suits you.
- Phong Nha: Phong Nha Homestay Community – This collective of homestays in Phong Nha provides a range of family accommodation.
$10–30 double room
For couples or solo travellers who have outgrown hostel life, there are hundreds of inexpensive beds that will provide a secure and friendly stay. Most budget hotels are privately owned and you’ll meet various family members working the front desk.
Good budget hotels in Vietnam provide a clean, small room, usually equipped with a TV and a mini-fridge. Some also have a desk and a wardrobe for your clothes.
Bathrooms are clean but small. The plumbing situation is quickly improving in Vietnam, and where once it was hard to find a shower that wasn’t installed directly above the toilet, enclosed showers are now the norm.
Best budget hotels in Vietnam
- Hanoi: The Art, Anchie Homestay – Big rooms, amazing hosts, close to Hanoi Old Quarter.
- Hanoi: Eden Westlake – Gorgeous design hotel near Westlake, great for early morning walkers.
- Hoi An: Vinstar – Superb friendly family-run hotel with comfy beds and cozy design.
- Hoi An: Volar – Great staff, comfy beds, and a small pool to cool off in.
- Ho Chi Minh City: Cozy House 140 – Cute and comfy budget hotel right around the corner from the backpacker district.
- Ho Chi Minh City: The Art – G9 Homestay – Big rooms with sleek modern design and kitchenettes in a quiet alley.
$50–100 double room
If you’re used to travelling in Europe or North America, you’ll be amazing at how far your hotel dollars can go in Vietnam. For the price of a seedy motel in the US, you can get a luxurious bed in a fully decked out villa in Vietnam.
Hotels in this range come with such luxuries as comfortable king-sized beds, designer decor, beautiful swimming pools, and often outstanding views. Plus, you will not believe the level of service you’ll receive!
Even if you’re travelling on a tighter budget for most of your trip, treat yourself to a slight better class of hotel for a few nights in Vietnam.
Best mid-range hotels in Vietnam
- Hanoi: Hanoi E Central Hotel – Affordable luxury & outstanding service in the heart of the Old Quarter.
- Hanoi: La Siesta Hotel Trendy – Luxury boutique comfort in Hanoi’s vibrant Old Quarter.
- Hoi An: Hoi An Grace River Villa – Modern comfort, beautiful pool, in an excellent riverside location.
- Ho Chi Minh City: Christina’s Saigon – Offers a range of beautifully designed apartments with all the amenities.
- Ho Chi Minh City: Fusion Suites – Gorgeous modern rooms, big windows, and in-house spa.
Boutique and Luxury Resorts
$100–$1000+ double room or suite
Though there are not quite as many options at this end of the scale in Vietnam, you will still find luxury escapes in almost every tourist hotspot.
Many of these are in stunning locations, with the kind of views that will make you glad to be alive, on Earth, with eyes to see this landscape. Service in Vietnamese luxury accommodation is outstanding — much better than you’ll find in most countries.
Prices for luxury resorts in Vietnam are by no means cheap, but they are measurably less expensive than you would pay for similar accommodations almost anywhere else in the world.
Best luxury resorts in Vietnam
- Hoi An: La Siesta Resort & Spa – Grand elegance, luxury hospitality and a sensational pool.
- Hanoi: La Siesta Premium Hang Be – Classic charm with traditional touches and modern comforts.
- Ho Chi Minh City: Mia Saigon – Elegant luxury boutique hotel on the river with exceptional service.
With thousands of kilometres of coastline, Vietnam is rife with opportunities for a luxury beach escape. From the (in)famous China Beach in Da Nang, to the sandy stretches of shoreline in Nha Trang and Mui Ne, to the island paradises of Phu Quoc and Con Dao, there is a beach to suit every traveller.
Beach resorts in Vietnam range from rough and ready budget huts on the beach to pristine 5-star resorts and plenty in between.
Best beach resorts in Vietnam
- Hoi An: Four Seasons Nam Hai – Private villas with jaw-dropping elegant design on the beach near Hoi An
- Ninh Van Bay: Six Senses – Exceptional villas with private pools overlooking the scenic bay
- Phu Quoc: Salinda Resort – Gorgeous villas with mesmerizing sunsets, private pools and spa treatments included
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We hope this guide to Vietnam accommodation helps you plan your journey to Vietnam. We believe every trip should be transformational and finding the right accommodation is an important part of that. If you have any questions, feel free to ask by email or on Instagram.
♥ Happy transformational travels, Jane & Stephen