Morphing Hoi An: more problems in tourism

Tourists and locals have recently encountered several problems in Hoi An, causing the city to leave an unfavorable impression upon visitors. Hoi An City is located in Quang Nam Province, central Vietnam. Several locations in the old town are “in chaos,” admitted Dinh Xuan Nghi, a chief police officer. The situation manifests itself partly through price gouging – something that is present in a number of tourist attractions across Vietnam. A resident in Hoi An, L.N., said on Monday that he had been charged VND1.7 million (US$75) for four tickets which he purchased for two foreign friends at a ticket counter of the passenger transit company Queen Café. Actually, the tickets cost only half that amount. As the passes showed no price, he was unknowingly confronted with a fait accompli. Dissatisfied, he returned to the counter, only to receive an unpersuasive explanation for the overcharge. The manager at the spot had to apologetically reimburse L.N. for the difference after he expressed his anger over the bus company’s behavior. L.N. is not alone in a practice that reeks of fraudulence, since forcing tourists to pay unfairly prices is common, especially at restaurants and on buses, according to the owner of a souvenir shop on Nguyen Thai Hoc Street in Hoi An. “I’ve seen cases of foreigners being overcharged on almost every bus trip between Da Nang City and Hoi An,” the owner said, adding that international passengers were usually greeted with a cold look from conductors after asking for change of… [Read full story]

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