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Hanoi, Vietnam

Hanoi, Vietnam

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Sep 17, 2022

Summary: With a population of approximately 8 million, Hanoi is the capital city of Vietnam. Hanoi's summer temps are in the mid 90s. In the winter, temperatures are in the upper 60s to lower 70s. Hanoi is an interesting place to live, but be prepared for lots of noise and pollution. If you're moving to Hanoi with kids, there are several schools that expat families recommend. Driving tip: get a motorcycle.

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What do I need to know about living in Hanoi?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Hanoi, they said:

"Be prepared for lots of noise and pollution. Most people find learning Vietnamese very difficult. But other than that, it is a very interesting place to live, also lots to see outside the city especially if you have a motorbike! Most Hanoians are very nice to foreigners," mentioned another expat in Hanoi.

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What do I need to know before moving to Hanoi?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Hanoi, they said:

"There are only a few areas where most expats live in Hanoi. You can live in town but then the noise can be a factor. Most kindergardens and schools are out of the centre. There are a few real estate companies and they generally have very good networks. I would recommend picking two or three and just spending time driving around to see what is on offer. You should never tell them your real budget and ask around to see what others are paying. You will probably change houses at some time during your stay and will know better the second time," added another expat in Hanoi.

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What is the average cost of housing in Hanoi?

If you are thinking about moving to Hanoi, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"Similar to UK. Land is expensive and housing can be too. You can find more local style housing for $500-700 a month but really you need to think about paying around $1000-1200 for something decent. The Embassy type housing goes for $1800-3500 and most good quality apartments will be $2500-3500. The most expensive place I have heard of is around $10,000 a month," commented one expat who made the move to Hanoi.

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How do I meet people in Hanoi?

When we asked people living in Hanoi about club and activities where newcomers can meet others, they responded:

"Depends on interests of course. UNIS (United nations international school) is out of town but offers courses to everyone, including language classes. L'Espace (French) Goethe (German) and other national organisations offer courses, exhibitions and events. Cinematheque offers "arthouse" films for members. Hanoi Opera House offers wonderful performances, very reasonably priced tickets so enjoy. for other information on events/organisations google Hanoi Infoshare and New Hanoian," mentioned another expat in Hanoi.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

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What should I bring when moving to Hanoi?

People living in Hanoi were asked what three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They wrote:

"Brought-Cutlery, wine glasses and bedding Left - Leather jacket, old family photos (just bring copies) and dried foodstuff," mentioned another expat in Hanoi.

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Will I be able to find a job in Hanoi?

When we asked people about industries and career opportunities in Hanoi, they reponded:

"NGO and development work, as well as English teaching, many people also start their own business," remarked another expat living in Hanoi, Vietnam.

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What is life like in Hanoi?

When we asked people living in Hanoi what life is like and how people spend their time, they said:

"Locals definitely around family, and expats with kids have plenty of opportunity to meet people through school events, same as anywhere else. As the capital, there are many NGOs here this also makes the expat experience very interesting, you meet many people doing interesting and worthwhile things," commented one expat who made the move to Hanoi.

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What are the schools in Hanoi like?

"Never send your children to this school. Our 2 children have thrived in schools in just about every corner of the world, but often came home crying from St Paul. The school and administration are a disgrace," commented one expat when asked about St Paul American School Hanoi in Hanoi.

"It is small, about 300 kids, but the great thing about it is the close sense of community and the school's open door policy. I would say that 90% of the teachers are excellent and well qualified. Once in a while there will be one or two that fall through the cracks. You just need to watch out for those. This is common in ALL schools anywhere!!," explained one expat in Hanoi, Vietnam with kids at Hanoi International School.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Hanoi, Vietnam

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