Moving to another country can be a difficult and daunting task – there’s no app for that. However, there are a bunch of apps and sites that can make your transition into life in ‘Nam a whole lot easier. The sooner you know about these babies, the better. There might not be an app for culture shock, but there is one for getting paracetamol delivered to your bed after you inevitably go too wild on Bui Vien.
Vietnammm is a food delivery app that every expat should download the second they step off the plane. Practically every western restaurant on the city is on here. You can get anything from pizza to poke delivered to your place, sometimes for no extra charge! Even KFC and Burger King are on here. Seriously, it’s a must.
In the vein of food-themed apps, McDelivery is another necessity. And also, MCDELIVERY?! How exciting is that? It’s fast, free and ever-so-slightly dangerous. There’s a desktop version in case you don’t trust yourself enough to install the app on your phone.
Although it’s not quite as easy as the aforementioned Vietnammm, Foody.vn is another food delivery service that’s definitely worth knowing about. Whilst Vietnammm is beloved by expats, Foody is favoured by the locals and includes more Vietnamese options than the former. You can also use it to make restaurant reservations which is perfect if you hate speaking on the phone, like me.
Too hungover to go and fetch yourself a pocari sweat and some painkillers? Now.vn has got your back. It can be slightly confusing to navigate at first but it’s definitely worth taking the time to figure this website out for later use on lazy/sick/hungover days.
Chopp is a lazy person’s dream – and allows you to bulk shop without worrying about how you’re going to balance a ton of groceries on your motorbike. It’s a grocery delivery service that allows you to order from over 40 supermarkets in the city, including gourmet and import markets. You can find virtually anything on here and it’s delivered to your door within a matter of hours. There’s a fee of around đ30,000 ($1.30/£1) for each different shop and shipping fees depend on the distance between your place and the respective supermarkets, but it never costs more than a few dollars.
MarketOi is a cross between Vietnamm, Chopp and Now.vn. It’s basically all you need in your life. You can source groceries from all over the city and order dinner all in one fell swoop – although the restaurant availability isn’t as good as Vietnammm. Nonetheless, delivery is impressively fast – very handy for parties where nobody wants to make a beer run.
Grab is a Singaporean ride-hailing app that recently bought out Uber in southeast Asia. While it can certainly be frustrating at times, it’s the most popular and convenient way to get around when you don’t want to drive. Rides are cheap here, too, especially if you use pre-paid credits. You can choose a bike, a car or even a pool.
Go Viet is the new kid on the ride-hailing block. It quickly emerged as Grab’s main competitor after Uber bid farewell to Vietnam. It’s not quite as popular yet but there seem to be more and more red-jacketed drivers on the streets with every passing day. It’s worth having both apps installed for times when rides are scarce or prices are surging.
Lazada is essentially the Vietnamese version of Amazon, and we’ve all needed Amazon at some point in our lives. Whether you want to buy a new phone, furniture or a face cream, Lazada’s got your back.
It might not quite be Sephora or Asos, but it’s the next best thing. Robins sells clothing, accessories and makeup from many popular global brands including The Face Shop, Nyx, Mango, Fossil, Adidas and more. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an English language option on the site but it’s easy enough to navigate.
The Sip app is another Singaporean creation that, for a fee of đ350,000 ($15/£11.50) allows you to choose one free drink per day from a wide variety of popular bars and restaurants. The options range from casual coffees to fancy cocktails, so you might only need to use it a couple times per month to get your money’s worth. It also gives you a great incentive to try new places and inspiration on where to go if you’re struggling to choose. Participating venues include L’Usine, Shri and Au Parc.
Click the heading for a link to each site.