For the most part I used to and still advise people to avoid mopeds and motorcycles in vietnam, as it’s dangerous and until last december they didn’t believe in helmets. Since then I have felt more comfy about taking a ride. Here when you pay someone to give you a ride they call it “Xe Om” (translation: “vehicle hug”, in otherwords “hugging vehicle”). In Thailand they call it a motorcycle taxi. They are generally faster from point A to point B than a regular taxi and since you negotiate before you take off there’s no such thing as a fast meter. So on my last day in Hanoi I took a motorcycle taxi and filmed these clips over the guy’s shoulder!

In the first clip at about 40 seconds in, you will notice the woman in black is dialing her cell phone! ayup. Then in clip 2 you will see tourists in their cyclo. It used to be that you would fit 2 people into one of these… I remember taking one 14 years ago to get to the airport. I rode with my cousin and my luggage. Yes there was enough room! But as you can see… The last clip is just pretty basic traffic. Notice the people crossing the street, the vendors with their baskets of food etc. In the last clip, just over halfway through I’ll enter an intersection. Remember there are no stop signs in Hanoi.

video ride1, ride1, ride3