An estimated 20 million mopeds are being ridden in Vietnam. Every larger road is a sight! How they snake and weave through the rest of the traffic in a seemingly unpredictable and mixed up way. The moped was and is a status symbol, and also the expression of economic change and continually increasing self-confidence. If Doi Moi gave nearly everyone the possibility to get on two wheels, then the desired status symbol is now your own car.
A moped is rarely only travelling with one person – sometimes there are up to 8 legs hanging down between the wheels on both sides. As varied as the cultures united in Vietnam appear, there is however one common value system of their communities – starting in the family, to colleagues at work, up to a distinct national pride.
It’s good for vistors and hosts alike to experience essential things of living together in a foreign country with a multitude of unfamiliar behaviour. Vietnam and their folk won’t rush past you, if you get acquainted with some of their customs, traditions and etiquette and use them.
Being friendly and interested when meeting people often opens the door to helpful and obliging deeds. Someone who feels pestered by market sellers, might want to use this effective strategy. At the beginning of your visit to the market, promise the first supplier some business, then he will protect you from further pushy offerings. And keep your promise!