We have been in Hanoi a week. It has been a fun week exploring the city and relaxing in a lovely hotel. What most impresses me is what I call the motorcycle and scooter ballet. Hours of entertainment can be had by going to a cafe, preferably at an intersection. Then just sit back relaxing with a beer and watch the ballet of continuous traffic of weaving in, out and around people as they walk across the road. Coming from New Zealand and living in England it makes me realise how bad drivers are there. Yes you read me correctly. Western drivers need rules to slow down and give way. In Hanoi, common sense is used in most cases.
The difference between Hanoi and traffic in places where I live, is the speed and common sense. It may look dangerous and mayhem but there is an art form in how the drivers avoid collisions by just driving with common sense and at a speed which works. I would be curious about other people’s impressions of the traffic in Hanoi. Of course, when crossing the road you must be careful. I have seen one person hit (nudged) at a speed in which just cross words were used and it was a tourist who was not looking both ways.
I also found out that the car is coming in numbers. In 2018 when Vietnam joins ASEAN tax on cars apparently goes to zero. If you want to experience Vietnam and all its zen like traffic chaos then now is the time to visit. Once cars arrive in numbers it will be one big continuous traffic jam.