Traveling to Vietnam during the Wuhan Coronavirus Outbreak? Here’s what you need to know.

Have you ever been so excited to discover new places and yet dreading it at the same time? I bet some of the travelers out there are feeling the same way. Whenever I travel, the least of my worries is bringing or securing a mask, but I guess this time, it became a priority. As of this writing, the Wuhan virus has spread to 16 countries including Vietnam. Two cases, father and son from Wuhan, have been reported in Vietnam since the outbreak. Both are being treated in a hospital in Ho Chi Minh City. The son has been given the all-clear as of Tuesday, January 28th. The father is reportedly recovering.

With the outbreak of the Wuhan virus, one cannot help himself or herself to be alarmed by the situation. Knowing the status and updates of what’s going on, can help you assess the scenario.

Yesterday, The Vietnamese Prime Minister announced Vietnam’s plans to combat the deadly coronavirus. Among the strategic plan is to strictly implement the Law on Exit and Entry of Vietnamese citizens, the Law on Medical Examination and Treatment, the Law on Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases, and the ban on importing wildlife into the country. For more updates please click here.

In Vietnam, the Lunar New Year celebrations last for 7 days and currently still ongoing, It’s expected to end on Feb 1st, There are many activities held during this traditional occasion, like Dragon and Lion Dancing, Lantern Festival, Boat Racing, Flower Exhibition, Ancient Fair, Traditional Games, Folk Song Performance and many more. I knew the highlights couldn’t be missed but if you feel like you are entering a possible suspected coronavirus zone, please take all necessary protections.

Although the China border from Vietnam is very far from Wuhan, where the center of the virus came from, people from China may use this access to get away from their country for a while. Affluent citizens are now starting to leave the country and fleeing to the unaffected area, possibly waiting for the storm to calm down.

Entering Vietnam by crossing the Chinese border is not a common way to travel to the country. However, it is not difficult to cross the border between the two countries. There are three main border crossings: These are Mong Cai – Dong Hung, Dong Dang – Ping Xian, and Lao Cai – Hekou. All three-border crossings are situated in the northeast region of Vietnam. So for those planning to travel in the Northern part of Vietnam that includes Hanoi, Halong Bay, and Sapa, please take precautions.

As of this writing, According to the latest news, The Wuhan coronavirus has killed 132 people and infected nearly 6,000. The number of those contracting the virus and deaths may continue to increase.

There are no vaccines yet that prevent humans from contracting a coronavirus. However, according to specialists the coronavirus will primarily threaten only people with weakened immune systems, so if you can’t avoid crowds especially during these festivities, here are some suggested guidelines during this epidemic time:

  1. Do not drink tap water. Even locals both living in the city and urban areas do not trust tap water quality.
  2. Do not buy food from street vendors. At least until the epidemic is over, avoid getting food from the streets. Small-scale vendors usually have a tight budget so they tend to maximize their profits by acquiring water from a cheap supplier.
  3. Avoid contact with sick people, animal markets, and live or dead animals.
  4. Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Bring sanitizer everywhere you go.
  5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  6. Seek medical care right away if you feel sick with fever, cough or difficulty breathing.
  7. Be a responsible traveler. Do not travel while sick.
  8. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  9. Wear a mask. I know it can be uncomfortable and not so fashionable, but as the saying goes it is better to be safe than sorry.

To avoid unnecessary contact among possible carriers of the virus, I suggest that you avail the Vietnam visa fast track. This service assists visitors to get visas on arrival fast without queuing for a long time during rush hours in any of Vietnam’s international airports.

There are 2 kinds of services:

– Normal service or standard service: Assist visitors to get visas on arrival fast without queuing.

– VIP or CIP service: Assist visitors to get visa on arrival fast without queuing + Escort visitors going through VIP or CIP gate for fast checking at the passport control

For a fuss-free entry to Vietnam, search Vietnam Airport Support for more details.

Before your intended arrival, make sure to sort out your visa. Visit Vietnam Immigration to check if you can enter Vietnam without a visa or if you are qualified for e-visa or a visa on arrival for a small fee.  Be Safe and Happy Travels!

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