Pros and Cons of Living in Vietnam

Pros and Cons of Living in Vietnam

Immigration into Vietnam is one of the available options if you are considering Southeast Asia to relocate. It’s not only comfortable climatic conditions that attract expats. The cost of living in Vietnam for one year is just $5,600. However, the standard of living here is quite high. Life in Vietnam gives you access to a well-developed infrastructure, which in large cities is on a par with that in Europe. Housing can be purchased at an affordable price: it is cheaper here compared to other countries in Southeast Asia. Foreigners are also allowed to buy property in Vietnam.


Advantages of moving

According to Expat Insider, 85% of expats are happy with their life. This is more than the global average of 72%. The republic is also among the top 10 countries of the Personal Finance Index and one of the countries with the most affordable cost of living. Vietnam is rapidly developing, so life here can be more than comfortable, provided you have a source of stable income or understand what you can do after moving.

What are the pros of living in Vietnam?

Among the positive aspects are:

  • Comfortable climate. There is no cold winter and slushy transitions between seasons that Europeans are accustomed to. It is important to bear in mind that the climate of the northern and central parts is different: in the north, winter is quite cool, and night temperatures can drop to 0 ℃. In the southern and central parts, winter comes with tropical downpours.
  • Affordable prices. The Vietnamese cost of living is one of the biggest selling points. It is low compared to many Western countries. The cost of living in Vietnam in USD is around $470 per month. Therefore, a foreigner with an income of about $6,000 per year can afford almost everything they need to live a comfortable life. As you can see, the cost of living in Vietnam vs US is much lower.
  • Stunning scenery. Forested hills, limestone cliffs, crashing waterfalls, and long beaches offer incredible views.
  • Friendly attitude of locals. You are sure to feel welcomed here.
  • Ease of finding a job. For digital nomads or native English speakers, finding employment is easy. An equally popular option for foreign nationals is to work at international branches of large companies, of which there is a fairly large number in the republic.
  • High quality private healthcare.

The cons of moving are largely related to the local mentality. It is not always familiar and understandable to foreigners. For example, some complain about chaotic traffic. Motorcycles and mopeds may ride not only on the roadway but also on the pavement. In non-tourist regions, you may have communication difficulties, as locals do not speak English. Also, when considering purchasing apartments in Vietnam, pros and cons, it is difficult not to touch upon environmental issues. Most foreigners note that residents have an extremely indifferent attitude towards the problem of rubbish.

Opportunities for moving

From August 15, 2023, local authorities have introduced a new electronic visa (e-visa) system for overseas nationals. This has expanded the availability of such visas to citizens of all countries that were previously subject to restrictions. Applicants simply need to fill out an online form, and the approved visa will be sent via email.

The possibility of moving to Vietnam depends on obtaining a visa. A non-resident can later obtain a residence permit. Buying an apartment in Vietnam does not grant you any additional privileges. To obtain a residence permit, you must meet one of the following conditions:

  • Set up your own company in the republic;
  • Obtain a work visa from a local company;
  • Marry a citizen.

A residence permit allows you to live in the country for 1–5 years and subsequently extend this period. It is difficult to obtain citizenship if you are bad at Vietnamese, since this requires passing a state language examination.

The most affordable way to stay here legally is to apply for a 3-month visa and then get a new visa after a trip to one of the neighbouring countries. A visa run allows you to stay in the territory of the state for an unlimited period of time, since there is no limit on the number of times you can enter the state.

Adapting to a new place

Expats usually do not have any problems living in Vietnam. However, you need to take into account a few things:

  • Speaking the language. Vietnamese is quite difficult to pronounce, so English will be your basic language of communication.
  • Following traditions. Despite freedom of religion, it is important to know local rules. For example, the elderly are honoured and respected. Therefore, the older generation lives with young people in the same house. The tradition of fortune telling plays an important role. No big business starts without the services of fortune tellers. Revering local shrines is an integral element of culture.
  • Searching for compatriots. In large cities, there are diasporas, whose members can explain the intricacies of a local life and worldview.

Adapting to a new place can take time, so it is important to be patient and open to new experiences. You can learn more about Vietnamese culture on our website.

Foreign diasporas in Vietnam

There are over 100,000 foreigners from more than 100 countries living in the republic. You can find expat communities in large cities such as Hanoi, Da Nang, and Ho Chi Minh City. There are many English-speaking schools as well. In online forums, you can find extensive information from fellow expats about living in Vietnam, cost of services and goods, advantages of a certain region, finding a job, etc.

The pros of buying real estate in Vietnam

If you are considering purchasing Vietnam real estate, the pros are numerous. According to an analytical report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Urban Land Institute, Ho Chi Minh City is among the top 10 Asia-Pacific cities for investment in 2023. The republic is open to foreign investment; all that remains is to take into account the following factors when buying an apartment in Vietnam:

  • A residence permit is not required to invest in real estate. It is enough to have a tourist visa to close the deal.
  • According to analysts, by 2030, average prices for premium properties in the country will reach $1.4 million. Given current prices, the potential profit is obvious. You can buy a villa for up to $500,000, while the cost of apartments is even lower.
  • The republic’s economy is rapidly developing; GDP is growing up to 8% per year, so investing in housing is potentially profitable.

Purchasing real estate

Before relocating, it is important to familiarise yourself with the current legislation. In accordance with local laws, foreign nationals cannot purchase whatever property they like. When choosing housing, you need to bear in mind several points:

  • Expats cannot own more than 30% of the units in a single condominium.
  • Housing can be purchased as a private property for 50 years, and the ownership period can be extended.
  • Foreigners are prohibited from purchasing residential units in areas considered strategically important for security.

Another disadvantage of buying local property is that, like other countries in Southeast Asia, there is no land ownership. When purchasing a villa or house, the land is leased long-term.

Choose your dream apartment in Vietnam

The website offers a large selection of foreign real estate across different locations of the country. A convenient search system allows you to set filters by type of property, number of rooms, and region. Prices are available in dollars and euros. Specialists will be happy to advise on all matters related to the visa regime. They will help you choose and buy real estate and ensure a safe transaction. To get advice, just leave a request in the contact form. Start choosing an apartment or villa in Vietnam right now!

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