Travel Vietnam

Hoi An Pros and Cons

If you’re thinking about staying in Hoi An long term, here’s a few pros and cons that you should consider before making your decision.


  • beautiful old town and surrounding areas – rice paddies and beach
  • chilled vibe – not too many distractions so if you’re looking for a place to write your next novel – this could be it (we know two people writing a book here)
  • hardly any traffic (just avoid the main street of An Bang Beach on a Sunday, see photo below) – you won’t get in a traffic jam like in Hanoi or HCM
  • you don’t need a motorbike, many people get around by bicycle here
  • good food – both local and foreign options
  • friendly locals
  • easy to rent a house at a decent price
  • easy to get to know people – other expats and locals
  • close to Danang airport and city (many people do a weekly shop up in one of Danang’s big supermarkets)


  • while there are a lot of digital nomads passing through, there is no co-working space so it’s difficult to meet other people in the same position as you – a large proportion of the expat community are retired Australians (nothing wrong with retired Australians but it’s harder to relate to them)
  • lack of entertainment options – there’s not much going on in terms of events and there is no cinema
  • everything shuts down around 10pm – night life consists of a few bars where mafia guys prey on foreigners. expats are currently talking about recent violent attacks against foreigners by two gangs present in Hoi An. best just to go home before midnight instead of looking for a place to party.
  • shopping in the Old Town. I’ve noticed that shopkeepers in general in Hoi An aren’t very friendly and are just interested in making money. Prices can be drastically inflated. I bought a bag in Mai Chau for 80k, I saw it in Hanoi Old Town for 100k and in Hoi An, the first quoted price was 350k. When I said no and didn’t want to get involved in bargaining a price, the shopkeeper yelled at me and asked me why I would ask if I didn’t want to buy.
  • rubbish/plastic burning. locals love doing it here and the smell is hard to bear. when we have our doors open, the smell just wafts in and we can’t escape it.


Sunday evening on Hai Ba Trung, An Bang beach


Sunday evening on Hai Ba Trung, An Bang beach


Hoi An Old Town at 9pm 

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