Airport - Hanoi
Originally used as an airbase for Vietnam Military Force during the war, Noi Bai International Airport officially opened to public and welcomed the first international flight in January 1978. In December 2014, Terminal T2 was launched separating the airport into two different terminals: the domestic - T1 and the international - T2.
Located in Soc Son district, Noi Bai International Airport was previously about 30 km far from downtown Hanoi. With the new bridge Nhat Tan launched in late 2014, the distance is only 15 km from the center.
With great effort lately to make it more convenient and enjoyable for travelers, the airport has been improved quite a lot in recent years. It is clean, comfortable and has all the necessary features: an information center, ATMs, currency exchange booths, duty-free shopping, bookstores, fast food and local food restaurants, internet cafes, bars and storage lockers service, a medical room, waiting lounge with free WiFi.
Check in: The standard procedure is customs, immigration and then security check. When you are through the security check process, you can go upstairs to use the free WiFi courtesy of the airport or relax in one of its cafes.
Please be noted that the regulation on carry-on limits (especially liquids) could be different in different countries so make sure you carefully check. Nothing is more frustrating that purchasing gifts or personal items at a duty free and then being forced to leave them in the trash at a security check! Certain countries prohibit you from carrying on certain goods, foods, etc. that you may not expect.
When you arrive at the Immigration desks, you will need to show your incoming flight number, your passport and (unless you are exempt), your visa. You may already have your visa if you received it from a Vietnamese Embassy before arriving, or most likely you will need to obtain your visa at the airport (so please read our visa info page to prepare this). Per customs, if you have anything to declare to customs, you will fill out a form and declare the items before being allowed to leave the airport.
If you are traveling from within Vietnam, you will of course arrive to the domestic terminal - T1. This domestic terminal has 100 check-in counters, souvenir shops, restaurants and cafes, currency exchange counters, and Vietnam Airlines’ business class lounge.
There is a big improvement in the new international terminal - T2 in term of both facility and service. This new terminal is well equipped with 96 check-in counters, 10 self check-in kiosks, last minute ticket counters, a medical room, a tourism info desk, souvenir shops, restaurants and cafes, currency exchange counters, post office service, a premium waiting area with massage chairs and Vietnam Airlines’ impressive business class lounge.
Local Tip: Free shuttle bus is provided between 6:00 - 24:00 in case you need to go from T1 - T2 and vice versa. There is a bus running every 15 - 20 minutes.
Currency Exchange: The official currency in Vietnam is the VND or the Dong, in 2015, this trades at approximately 21,000 VND to 1 USD. Don’t be alarmed if only about half of the ATMs work, and some have a maximum withdrawal of 2,500,000 VND. If you already have cash of a different currency to exchange, it is a pretty safe bet to use the currency exchange counters - sometimes they are even better than some banks - just make sure to check with their current conversion to make your decision. You can also wait until you arrive in town to find a bank, hotel or exchange shops - but you will need to have minimum 350,000 VND to pay for the taxi (and this is just the price to get to Hanoi Old Quarter, it could be more if you are going somewhere else). And you may be hungry and need some VND cash to eat immediately after you arrive!
Local Tip: You can also find a helpful information desk where the staff communicate well in English.
Transportation (To and From Airport)
It is recommended that you contact your hotel or hostel before you fly in to set up transit from the airport. This is simply the most reliable and easy way anywhere you may go. But, if you don’t arrange this and you need to get transport after you arrive, it’s not difficult. Here are your options:
With the new regulation applied, all taxies from Noi Bai International Airport now are on meters. If any taxi driver attempts to bargain a fee, his/her driving license will be kept by the airport police. Please be noted that the airport exit toll fee is 10,000 VND, so don’t be surprised if the driver adds this at your arrival.
The most convenient way to get to town is by taxi, and the cost to most places in the Old Quarter is from 300,000 to 400,000 VND. It will take from 30 to 50 minutes to get to the Old Quarter depending on traffic. It is closer if you want to come to the West Lake area with the new bridge Nhat Tan.
Located about 50 meters on your right hand side after leaving the terminal, the shuttle buses are offered by different providers such as Jetstar, VietJet Air, Hanoi airport bus, Viet Thanh bus and Dai Nam bus. You can buy the tickets in the airplanes (in case you travel with Jetstar or VietJet Air), inside the airport (ask at the information desk) or at the spot where the bus parks. The cost is about 40.000 VND - 50.000 VND. Please be noted that these buses will not take you to the center of the Old Quarter but have different stops depending on the providers. However, it will save you quite a bit of money and from there you can take a taxi to downtown.
If you’re really on a budget you can always catch the public bus between 6:00 to 18:00. Located about 200 meters from the exit gate of the airport, the bus number is 7 and it’ll cost about 6.000 VND - 10.000 VND. This bus runs every 15 - 20 minutes. Its final stop is Cau Giay bus station. From here, it is pretty close to other parts of the city. Please be noted that public bus service has not been available in International terminal. If you want to take the public bus then you have to go to the domestic terminal first. Ask at the information desk for the direction. Also, it might be quite inconvenient if you have heavy luggage or travel in group.
Visa On Arrival: please check out the Visa Information page.
You’ll get your visa sorted out at the immigration window, just follow the instruction when you get off the plane you will easily find the place.
Airport Main Number: +84 4 3886 5047
Lost & Found: located on the ground floor of the arrivals level of the international terminal.
Storage Locker Service: You can use this service from Vietnam Airlines. The price range is various depending on the size of your luggage and the length of days using the service. You can ask at the Information desk for the direction to this service.
Service complaint: If you have any question, complaint or concern relating to the service of Noi Bai International Airport, you can call their service hotline: +84 4 1689.166.566 or email: [email protected]