1 more question about hanoi.
i read up lonely planet, and for me, i realised the best option is the vietnam airlines shuttle bus service. is that what you guys used too? is there is booth at the airport for me to get the tickets for the shuttle service?
You really have 7 choices on getting from Noi Bai to the city.
1. Bus #9 runs from the airport to the city. Cheapest option of course. Less than $.50 for you and your bag.
2. VN Air runs a shuttle from Noi Bai to their office on Quang Trung, 40,000VND.
3. Jetstar Air runs a shuttle van.
4. Kumho-Vietthanh runs a shuttle as well.
5. Share taxi (van), was $2 when we used it.
6. Regular taxi, figure $10 to the city.
7. Have your hotel pick you up. Many offer this service if you book 3-5 nights with them.
I suggest you check with Jetstar about their shuttle. I assume you are flying with Jetstar? Or use the Kumho-Vietthanh shuttle. If that is not going to work for you, I would use the share taxi. Same price as the VN Air shuttle, but they will drop you off at your hotel instead of the VN Air office. We came out of the airport looking for the VN Air shuttle, were met by a girl touting the share taxi. We said we would pay $2 each, she said "get it". There are 2 things to deal with. They will not leave until full. Took 15 minutes in our case. The touts on the van will try to get you to stay at a hotel that gives them a kick-back. Have your hotel name memorized, written down, or confirmed reservation in hand. No, your hotel did not burn down, was flooded, infested with rats, closed, etc. Refuse to switch to their 'favorite hotel'. It was not a bad ride. They drop off people as their hotel comes up. I would use the share taxi, but one of shuttles would be a good option as well.
Shan, send me a PM if you want HAN advice on hotels, things to do/see. Good luck.
[ Edit: Edited on 18-Aug-2010, at 09:56 by vegasmike6 ]
In addition, there is also the Kumho Shuttle. No, there is no such booth.
I can tell you from experience, that Hanoi Airport has more rip-off transfer artists than any airport I've ever used. Unless you feel like wasting an hour of your vacation running around trying to figure out options and prices, the hotel pickup service is the way to go. Average charge is $15. and well worth it! A man holds up a sign with your name on it, and away you go.
For second-timers, the shuttles are the way to go (even though they charge foreigners more than others!)