Travel to Nha Trang
Hoi An Travel Blog› entry 7 of 17 › view all entries
Despite our sunburn we had a busy schedule lined up for today as we had lots of chores to do before our evening departure for Nha Trang on the overnight sleeper bus. We stuffed as much of the free hotel breakfast in as we could. We planned a late lunch suspecting we would have little hope of anything decent to eat at the bus pit stop later. After breakfast we were heading to the post office when the reception of the hotel said they could arrange for two of the post office staff to come to us and save us the long walk and queueing. Now that's what we call reward for paying the extra for a good hotel. Oh how the other half live. Two lovely ladies turn up on the post office moped with all the forms, boxes, scales, tape and string needed to do the job. Definately much easier than our Hanoi experience. We only hope that they were for real and didn't just make off with our freshly made suits. If you visit Hoi An at some time in the future and see a 4' 9" local walking round in a suit clearly made for a 6' 2" bloke, that's Adam's suit.
Time saved for a couple of beers is probably the best time there is (we're begining to think we may be developing an alcohol problem!!). We went to an internet cafe where we did some work on this site, but after an hour of writing the blog up the computer crashed and none of it was saved. Oh how we suffer for your enthralement dear reader!!
We had a bite to eat and the aforementioned beers and then headed over to the Camel tour office to get the bus. Now let me tell you a little tale of the sleeper bus scam (we've lost count of what number scam we're up to, maybe ten or eleven!!). When we booked our tickets we were shown photos of the bus, the superb roomy bunks, the clean and bright onboard toilet and how luxurious it is. The travel offices all have these photos and glowing descriptions of its Japanese made engine, German made brakes and US made something or other. All of this is supposed to make you feel that you really are getting the best there is. We aked at least a half dozen times if that was the actual bus and "of course" they say. Well we lemons sit waiting at the travel shop and the bus is late, onward hotels have been booked, the clock is ticking. Suddenly a smelly little guy runs up and hustles everyone lugging their heavy backpacks a hundred meters down the street to the waiting coach. It's only when you get up close to the coach that you realise that in comparison to the one you've been promised it's a pile of junk!! "Sorry, it's the wrong coach" you might say. "No! No! my company the only coach" yells the smelly little man "You get on or not?". Now the clever part is that turning around and going back to the travel office will guarantee you miss the bus and then have to fight for a refund you will probably never get as well as default on your reservation at the other end. So you get on. The bus then proceeds to make pickups at various hotels where everyone receives the same treatment, is yelled at bullied into certain bunks and has their luggage abused by the driver. Finally everyone on board you stop outside the travel office where he hands a sheet with all the victims names ticked off without there being time for you to complain or offload your luggage. One guy who tried to ended up being left behind and having to chase the bus down on a moped. Honestly if you saw it in a film you'd laugh your head off but say it could never happen!!
So remember that when you are booking a bus ticket on an overnight sleeper you probably won't be travelling in quite the style you may be expecting!! Apparantly the 'luxury' bus does exist on the Hanoi to Hue route but not further south!! We did subsequently mention this to the TM Brothers office in Nha Trang and pointed out that the staff further up the line were blatant liars and had ripped us off but really what do they care. The only purpose complaining serves is that it's fun to watch them squirm a bit as they really don't know how to deal with it. Almost worth getting ripped off for in fact!!