Mobile phones nowadays are a must-bring object for nearly everyone in the world, especially the travelers. Mobile phone can help you find ways in an absolutely new place, watch cute dog videos on facebook or call your Mom half a world away for free. And we know how hard it is when coming to a strange new city like Saigon, so here are all things you need to know about mobile phone in Vietnam and how to set them up.
Choose your phone brand
There are actually a lot of phone brands now in Vietnam. You can see brands from all over the world used in Vietnam: Apple, Huawei, LG, Samsung, Oppo… Samsung continues to lead market of mobile phone in Vietnam with a market share of 43%. Vietnam is one of the few countries in the APAC region where Samsung is still enjoying a significant lead over its nearest competitor. Of course, you don’t really need to care about these numbers, just take whatever smartphone that you feel most comfortable with.
But there’s one thing you should notice: check if your phone can be used in Vietnam. You have three options: bring a locked phone with you, bring an unlocked phone or buy a cheap mobile phone in Vietnam. If you bring a locked phone, make sure you understand the terms for international roaming (this can expensive depends on your service provider; for example, T-mobile charges several dollars a minute and does not offer mobile data here). With an unlocked phone or a phone that you buy here, you can simply purchase a SIM card and have a local number. Smartphones are super required here because you can have access to the 3G/4G network via 3G/4G sim card, which is extremely important for travellers.
Buy a Sim Card
Where can you buy a Sim card in Vietnam? The answer is nearly everywhere! Yes, there are stalls, stores, carts, convenient stores that sell Sim card right the minute you land in Vietnam. The minimum price for a SIM card is less than US$3.
3 biggest telecom providers in Vietnam are Viettel, Mobifone, Vinaphone. There’s nothing to worry about when using these 3 providers. But if you want us to give you an advice which one to use, then it would be Viettel. This company is the leader of the telecom provider market, as it owns nearly 40% of the market share. The Viettel Group is the number one ICT group in terms of profit, infrastructure, subscriber numbers, and of 3G network in the country.
Set up 3G/ 4G
Maybe we need to explain the advantages of a smartphone with 3G/ 4G no more. Luckily all the sims you buy from stores mobile phone in Vietnam can be used with 3G/4G immediately. We will show you some Viettel 3G data plans that are most used:
In case your SIM has not been installed 3G configuration, just ask the store owner – whose store you buy Sim from and ask them to help you.
The syntax for Viettel data packages
To register a data package, send the name of the package via text to the number “191” (eg: send “MIMAX200” via text to “191”).
If you want to cancel a data package, send “HUY” via text to the number “191”, then reply the text with a “Y” (YES).
To check the amount of data left, send “KTTK” via text to the number “191”.
- Dial *101# to check your balance
- Dial “*102#” to check the promotion balance.
- Dial *100*code# to top up
- You can use Momo app to top up online. It’s a very popular app to pay online in Vietnam.
- Use Skype/ Viber/ Whatsapp for international call for free. You will be charged quite highly if using mobile phone networks.
- Viettel removed roaming charges in Laos and Cambodia in early 2017, so you can use the one sim card in all three countries.
- The amount of 3G data you need to use will seem to be lower than what you think because of the availability of free WIFI at almost every place you go to.