It can get so confusing when you first get to Vietnam as each dollar is worth thousands, so everything seems really expensive.
With all the hundreds of thousands and millions can make the brain go into overload. While bargaining is another time when numbers seem to be in the millions, so it is better to write down the prices as you go.
It is easy to get confused and I been known to accidentally pay some exorbitant price for something only because I got so confused in the moment.
The best suggestion I have is make up a currency sheet as a quick reference guide in USD (American Dollars), VND (Vietnamese Dong) and your own currency back home. Then you can flick it out of your bag as a quick guide anytime or there has got to be an App out there that does it for you, but either way use something.
Because VND22,497 is close to VND25,000, for me the best plan is to round it up to make the currency calculation easier, otherwise all those digits do my head in.
I once paid $20 kiwi instead of around $2 because I got confused, funny the taxi driver took the money and zoomed off. Another time I thought I paid $40 kiwi for some shoes but actually cost $80 USD – whoops !! .. . it happens especially when you are stressed.
It is a common occurrence that when you ask for a price of something, the seller will tell you it is Vietnamese Dong !! In the case of an English newspaper, it used to be 5,000 Vietnamese Dong!!!!
I always smile to myself and think of course, as I wouldn’t pay 5,000 of any other currency for a newspaper.