Flying From China to Vietnam
Mike’s Blog 109
On the road again. My Uncle Bill says when he hears that song he thinks of me. Yes, back on the move – not as much as the old days – harder now with wife and kids. Kissed my wife and kids and left to Saigon, Vietnam. Andrew, working with me for the summer, came along too so I don’t have to travel solo like I normally do.
We left Shenzhen, China at 10:30am, arrived at Hong Kong airport at noon – pretty fast! Taxi to Huanggang border (15 minutes for 25 RMB or about 6 USD), bought the Airport Express bus for 60 RMB (about 10 USD), crossed through China customs and then skylimo to airport in about one hour.
I should have used the e-channel but I didn’t want to have Andrew go through the long customs line on his own. It confused the customs official as they couldn’t find my stamp of last entry so caused a bit of delay.
In and out of Hong Kong, bumped into a friend at the airport (random!) at the terminal as she was heading to Shanghai. Flight took off about 20 minutes delay and we loaded up on Air Vietnam flight.
The flight was only 3 hours – and we “lost” an hour as its 1 hour behind in the Vietnam timezone. Jon Myers helped us out so much, we got our visa express by being able to go in the VIP lane (even better than the APEC card lane).
Got the Mobipone plan – unlimited 4G data for 5 days for only about 10 USD (200,000 Baht).
First impression of Vietnam, lots of motorbikes! They like take over the roads. Since we landed at about 5:30pm local time, we took a taxi right into traffic. We stayed at the Palace Hotel Saigon – right on the walking street of District 1.
After dropping off our bags and settling in a bit, we met Justin and Mike from Empire Flippers and Jon Myers for dinner. They were awesome and even picked up the bill – thanks guys! After dinner we headed across the “Square” to Beruit bar, a really cool outdoor sheesha place where we had a bottle of vodka and other goodies waiting at our RSVP’d table. Was able to talk business, internet marketing, and more juicy topics while we had a belly dancer coming around the tables. Caught her on video and she was so excited to be on camera that I am going to have to make a small video clip for her special now- she liked the quality of my camera’s recording.
So only a few hours in Saigon and this place is intense and hopping! I know Jon has been working to get me out here for years and finally pushed over the edge and did it.
Since I’m in town, we did a GFA (Global From Asia) meetup on Thursday June 29 at The Hive Coworking space. Talking about China business, Amazon FBA, and spread the good word. Will have a cool lineup on the panel with Jon, Justin, John Cavendish, and Maurice – really excited for tonight and over 50 people have registered now.
Just gotta put yourself out there and make it happen. Really excited to build out Vietnam as a key strategic hub for Global From Asia. Talking to local organizers already about making a regular monthly meetup here for GFA Experts meetup. Other cities in Asia, as well as around the world, are being planned now. Time to take this podcast and blog and build a local meetup network.