Authorities in Ho Chi Minh City have launched nightly taxi boat services on the Saigon River as part of efforts to increase tourism choices.

The boat service, organized by Thuong Nhat Co. Ltd., starts at the Bach Dang Wharf in District 1 (2 Ton Duc Thang Street) and concludes at Binh An Wharf in Thu Duc City.

At a very reasonable ticket cost of VND15,000 ($0.64) per person per way, the tour operates daily from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Saigon River in downtown HCMC at night
Saigon River in downtown HCMC at night // Photo by Cao Anh Tuan / VnExpress

In line with COVID-19 precautions and procedures, travellers must scan a QR code before boarding and keep masks on throughout the journey.

The goal is to diversify outdoor nighttime activities following the epidemic and encourage waterway tourism, according to Nguyen Kim Toan, the tour company's director.

This newest addition to waterway infrastructure comes a full decade after the closure of the Thu Thiem ferry in 2012 - a service that started 100 years ago and connected commuters to Saigon’s District 1. 

Saigon Waterbus’ evening buses
Saigon Waterbus’ evening buses operate from 5 p.m // Photo on vietnamnet

Now, in the comfort of a little yellow river bus, passengers can travel through the veins of a city that owes its development to river commerce.

Through this lens, using HCMC’s new river service is not only a way to get across the city; it is also a journey through the city's heritage.

Leaders of Ho Chi Minh City have requested that the federal government relax quarantine requirements for foreign visitors beginning this month in order to revitalize economic and tourist activities.

Ho Chi Minh City, also known as Saigon, received almost 9 million foreign visitors in 2019, making up nearly half of Vietnam's total international arrivals.


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