Sunday, January 08, 2006

Shopping For Tet

Today, my friends in Hanoi are going to Lang Son province for shopping. This province is on the border between Viet Nam and China. Things are imported from China under taxes. Most of the goods from there are much cheaper than in Hanoi, so many people from elsewhere in Viet Nam also go there to buy and then sell the products in their own retail shops. Quality is a problem with some stuff and of course nothing is guaranteed. There is the possibility of getting caught by the police if you buy more than one thing and of course you will have to pay lots of tax.

People say that this Lunar New Year seems to be coming earlier than usual, as there are lots of people hanging around shopping for new clothes and goods for Tet. Everywhere -supermarkets, big and small markets are full of people, prices are being put up without notice, depending on the owner. People are buying early because they're scared that the price will get higher as Tet approaches.

For me, I always have to pay more than Hanoians because I have a southern accent. I got upset many times with the sellers because they always try to rip me off, which is really annoying.


Anonymous said...

You should choice goods to buy in Lang Son because most of them is cheaper than Hanoi but some of them is higher price. My friend bought me a DVD, a hair dryer are cheaper and good quality but an iron is so bad.

Jean said...

Je suis allé déja trois fois à Hanoi , soit sept semaine en tout .
J'adore cette ville , sa simplicité , sa beauté , la grande qualité de ses habitants .
Je ne comprends pas la langue vietnamienne , mais à Hanoi , je me sens chez moi , comme si j'étais à ma maison .
La seule chose qe je regrette , c'est que la mode , la mentalité occidentale fait des progrés , le Viet Nam , dans quelques années ressemblera un peu à l'Occident . Je le regrette .
Je devais aller à Hanoi en novembre dernier , mais nous avons eu un peu peur de la grippe aviaire , nous viendrons un peu plus tard .
Je vous souhaite une bonne journée .

I went déja three times in Hanoi, that is to say seven week in all. I love this city, his simplicity, his beauty, the great quality of his inhabitants. I do not understand the language Vietnamese, but in Hanoi, I feel at home, as if I were at my house. The only thing qe I regret, it is that the fashion, Western mentality makes progrés, the Nam Vietnamese soldier, in a few years will loock the Occident a little. I regret it. I was to go in Hanoi last November, but we were a little afraid of the influenza aviaire, we will come a little later. I wish you a good day.

Winn said...

Bring a local friend with you ? So they wont kid you for having southern accent..

i havent shop for the chinese new year yet. Gonna go home to celebrate this festivity. Cant wait for the long break :P

Crystal said...

Could you please explain what is "Tet"? I've heard of the "Tet Offensive" during the WAR but I never knew why it was called that. Interesting that Chinese goods are cheaper than those in Viet Nam, I'd think the opposite would be true but I guess the Chinese have mastered the low-cost concept, though they really should work on quality more.

Van Cong Tu said...

Jean: thanks for your translation, I was tried to translate to English but it seemed so hard to me. I agree with what you said- thanks for that.
Winn: I usually ask my friends to do that though :)
Crystal : Tet is chinese new year- lunar new year. Things from China in this situation is cheaper than in Viet Nam because it imports inlegal and the quality is a question.
Thanks for you guys comments