I don’t always sign up for tours, but one Airbnb’s Experience caught my eye, the Saigon Street Food Fest run by Saigon Extravaganza Tours. A tour which takes place on the back of a scooter whisking you around town. Not only will you see local shops and taste the foods, but you’ll get to experience the traffic first hand, piloted by experienced drivers of course. That sounds like a win win scenario. Although, being Vietnamese myself, I wasn’t sure. For the best spots for food, I had my friends. For getting around, well there’s Uber which even has scooters available. Then there’s the whole part of being around other tourists. Did I really want to do that? Well, in this case, it turned out great. All thanks to Jake and his crew.
The group is made up of college students who use their very own scooters to take you around. So keeping you safe also means they safeguard their daily means of transportation. Even better was that each tour guide wants to practice their English more so what’s a better way to do that than to show a bunch of foreigners around. Perfect.
This event started at 6pm and went for four hours, ending around 10pm. The cost was $60 USD which was paid through Airbnb. If you register through their site, the costs are a little less. Either way, it’s worth the price.
They had everything covered. From small things like hand sanitizer to their own photographer, all you really needed to do was to show up. Also, the weather forecast called for rain and in Vietnam, that meant at any time. If it were to rain heavy, the event would be canceled with a refund. If it was raining lightly, well, they have ponchos. Thankfully, it only sprinkled for a few minutes and there was no need for ponchos. So glad they were prepared.
If you want to see what it’s like riding through the alleys of Saigon, check it out here. Our tour guides sent us into a narrow maze where we kept thinking we’ve hit a dead end. But with a quick turn we found one path after another until we hit the main roads again.
It was such a fun group that the visitors from New Zealand decided to invite everyone out afterwards. Clubbing with people you just met? Sure, why not. And yes, all the tour guides came out as well. Now that’s how you have a Saigonese moment.
Thanks for making it a memorable night gang!
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Verdict: Ditch those big bus tour groups and get an up close personal view of the city through this group.