Ho Chi Minh City
There's a growing trend in Ho Chi Minh City’s shopping scene of in-the-know locals and expats opening up enticing boutiques selling fair trade items, housewares, and very stylish locally made items, ranging from fashion to coffee cups.
Considered a traditional fine art of Vietnam, lacquerware is beautiful, long-lasting and—best of all for those with luggage weight restrictions—light. Most tourist shops and markets hawk the same kind of budget lacquerware. Higher quality items come at a price and are usually found in specialty shops. Some of the newer high-rise shopping complexes in downtown Ho Chi Minh City are home to high-end international brands, such as Versace, Jimmy Choo, and Prada. On the other end of the scale, markets offer a cheap and cheerful experience. They are generally open from sunrise until sunset, although some vendors just outside the markets stay open later.
By law, all transactions should be completed using dong, even if prices are quoted in U.S. dollars.