Hanoi welcomed more than 26 million of visitors in 2018 and hopes to increase this number to 29 million in 2019. With the continuous development all over the world, plus the reputation is getting more and more world-wide known, Hanoi has been trying to improve and to expand the tourism facilities including the buses and other public transportation. It is truly easy to understand that in that 26 million, it can be business travelers, leisure travelers who set the low budget for Vietnam holiday tour; or who love to explore the city in a local way. This article will help you understand more about the types of Hanoi bus and how to catch buses in Hanoi.
Types of bus in Hanoi
Bus is the main public transportation for many of local people in Hanoi from the officers, students, elders, etc. since it is convenient, cheap and a safe place to avoid the heat in the summer or the freeze in the winter. There are multiple of them on the street with red-yellow-white, blue or green; the blue and green buses are newer and with less routes than the other. Hanoi public buses pick passengers up and drop them in the stationary points on the streets . You can see that there is a pole topped by a small blue signboard; indicating the bus number and its route.
Hop-on Hop-off bus
Another type of bus which was launched in just a couple of years specially for the travelers; which is Hop-on Hop-off bus. This is a type of double decker and top open bus with fun colors and design like many typical tourist buses in other countries in the world. It has 13 stops going through more than 20 famous attractions; allowing travelers to explore and experience the city in their own way; including Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square & Hoan Kiem Lake – St.Joseph’s Cathedral – The Flag Tower & the Museum of Military History – Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum: Ho Chi Minh Museum & One-pillar Pagoda – Quan Thanh Temple & West Lake – Tran Quoc Pagoda – Cua Bac Church – The Imperial Citadel of Thang Long – The Temple of Literature – Hoa Lo Prison – Vietnamese Women Museum – Hanoi Opera House – Hanoi Post Office – Hanoi Old Quarter.
These buses are operated everyday from 9.15 am to 17.15 pm and buses arrive every 30 minutes. You can buy the ticket online via www.hopon-hopoff.vn, at the ticket counters in Hoan Kiem Lake and buy it on the bus. The ticket price per person is 219,000 VND for 4 hours; 329,000 VND for 24 hours; and 479,000 VND for 48 hours. There are also night tours on bus which lasts about 1.5 hours and 4 hours but you will need to book in advance.
You do not have to stay on the bus all the time; and you are free to stop at board or disembark at any bus stop on the route. The tickets with the limitation of time includes multilingual audio guide (Vietnamese, English, French, Chinese), free Wifi, USB charging ports, the city maps; and also an English speaking guide on board to help the passengers get off at the bus stop that is nearest to their hotel.
Hanoi bus routes
Some important Hanoi bus routes
- #07 and #17: These two bus lines will stop at Noi Bai International Airport every 15 minutes. The #7 bus will cross the Thang Long Bridge and head to Cau Giay (you can stop to visit Museum of Ethonology on the way); while #17 buses go to the Old Quarter via Chuong Duong Bridge.
- #1: Long Bien Bridge – Hang Ga street – Hanoi train station
- #2: Hanoi Opera House – Temple of Literature – Van Phuc Silk village
- #4: Long Bien Bridge – Hanoi Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel – Hanoi Opera House
- #8: Long Bien Bridge – Hoan Kiem Lake – Hanoi Opera House
- #9: Hoan Kiem Lake – Hanoi Old Quarter – Hanoi Zoo – Lenin Monument
- #11: Thong Nhat Park – Hanoi Opera House – Trang Tien Bookstore – Long Bien Bridge
- #14: Hanoi Old Quarter – West Lake – Metro Thang Long – Thang Long Bridge
- #23: Vincom Ba Trieu Tower – Temple of Literature – Fine Arts Museum – Hanoi Opera House
- #43: Hanoi train station – Dong Anh town
- #47: Dong Xuan market – Long Bien Bridge – Bat Trang ceramic village
How to find bus routes
There are 2 ways to find the bus routes. You can download Hanoibus app via link http://timbus.vn/ or search directly through Google maps. You simply insert your starting point and the destination, then click the transit option, it will show you the way to find the appropriate bus routes, how to reach the bus stop as well as bus timetable.
Notes for bus in Hanoi
You cannot buy this bus tickets online in advance since they only issue the paper ticket when you get on the bus. This ticket is handed to you by a staff and you have to pay him/her in cash. The average fee for a trip is 7,000 VND per person and more depending on the distance between the departure and the end point. Make sure you carry small bills when you plan to travel by bus.
The problem while using the public bus in Hanoi to the sites is it can be crowded at the peak times such as 7-8 am and 5-7 pm daily when people go to work and get back home. Also, pickpockets have several chances to “do their job” in a knitted bus; so make sure you cover your purse/wallet and valuable items or place the backpack at the front of you.
Besides, the bus drivers in Vietnam are always in hurry though they are actually not; so they tend to stop the bus at the stop in such a short time. Therefore, you will need to prepare and get to the bus at the front door; and also, get out of the bus by its back door as quickly as you can if you do not want to miss it.
To experience buses in Hanoi, you should have a look at these Vietnam itineraries then drop a message about what you expect:
In conclusion, traveling by bus is rather interesting for people who have long time in the capital city and also, are active and good at direction and using maps. But for everyone, I think it is still hard since you are traveling to another strange country where the traffic, the rules, the road designs… are different from your hometown. In case of having a short time in Hanoi and would like to have a private and personalized day trip, you can always contact us – Indochina Voyages!
Daniel Nguyen – Travel Specialist