Before travelling to Vietnam, or indeed any destination, it is good practise to check the travel advice pages of your own government’s website for up to the minute advice on travel and especially for specific threats to your safety based on your nationality, gender, race, religion or sexual persuasion. 

Aside from the usual precautions recommended for global travel generally, there is no indigenous terrorist threat in Vietnam. 

Earthquakes are very uncommon in Vietnam and occur only rarely in the far northwest mountains. The majority of tremors occasionally felt in Vietnam have their epicentres over the borders in Thailand, Myanmar, Northern Laos and Yunnan Province in China.  

Heavy rains can cause flooding in northern and central Vietnam, usually in October and November and have occasionally led to loss of life and can cause considerable damage. Tropical cyclones are a feature of the weather patterns circulating in the South China Sea, and occasionally can severely affect the eastern coast.  

Tourist crime is not as prevalent in Vietnam as in some neighbouring countries, but the usual assortment of petty thieves found everywhere will target tourists for portable technology, handbags and luggage, purses, wallets and passports especially at busy tourist sites and markets. Disturbingly, some snatches have been carried out on motorcycles, which can be very dangerous, especially if the victim becomes entangled with the targeted item. 

Be careful where you point your camera. Never photograph the police, military personnel and installations, or demonstrations, which you should in any case avoid. 

Never use illegal drugs. Penalties are severe, with possession of even small quantities potentially resulting in the death sentence. Prison conditions are very poor and indefinite detention without trial is possible.  

There have been a number of tragic boat accidents in Ha Long Bay. Always travel with a reputable tour operator, such as ourselves, to avoid the potential of travelling aboard unsafe boats. 

Foreign nationals are forbidden to invite Vietnamese nationals into their hotel rooms. 

Homosexuality is not illegal in Vietnam, though under Vietnamese law, there are no protective rights and disapproval amongst the populace is still commonplace. In traditional and ethnic areas it is best to be discreet and respectful of local traditional views for your own security.