What shall I bring?
If you already have a working visa for Vietnam, then that's great. If not then Apollo can support and advise you on how best to get one. If you're travelling from outside Vietnam then you can arrange your visa before you travel to Vietnam at the Vietnamese Embassy or we can arrange to provide one upon your arrival at the airport. Apollo also supports and advise you through this application process for work permits and residency. Either way it's important that you keep your receipts for the visa so that Apollo can reimburse you for it.
You will be provided with support such as:
- City map and guide for your new surroundings and for cultural awareness
- A selection of Apollo goodies
- Housing assistance
- Examples of lesson plans and resource packs
What else to bring?
Passport - It's necessary for staying in hotels, as a form of identification, and for travel in and out of the country.
Money - just to get started. It's easy to exchange dollars at most banks. $2000 is the recommended amount to cover any deposits, the first few weeks or months rent (depending on your housing selection), hotel bills and initial living expenses.
Original copies of degree and EFL teaching qualification certificates - are required as Vietnamese authorities will not accept copies for a work permit application. So if you cannot bring them with you, then they must be forwarded to Apollo in order for you to start teaching.
Police Check - from your home country is also necessary for a successful work permit application.
Suitable clothes - you will need to dress in smart shoes and clothing when teaching. Vietnamese students expect their teachers to wear a shirt and trousers for men, blouse and skirt/trousers for women, with closed-toe work shoes. For appropriate clothing outside of work hours, you can get advice from your Apollo centre as different regions of Vietnam experience very different weather patterns. Also, it is difficult to get larger sized clothes in Vietnam (above UK size 10/12). Tall people may also struggle so our advice is to bring some clothes that you will feel comfortable in. Finally, tailors in Vietnam can create anything you desire and are reasonably priced.
Souvenirs - from home are a great way to introduce yourself to bond with Vietnamese students. They will have many questions about you and your native culture.
Toiletries - many brands are available in Vietnam such as L’Oreal, Clinique, Estee Lauder, Shiseido, Clarins, Revlon, Maybelline, some Body Shop products, Nivea, Dove and Toni and Guy products. However most are suited to the Vietnamese styles, complexions and hair so it may be worth bringing some along with you if you have specific preferences.
Electrical goods - are available in Vietnam and it is also possible to get them with an international guarantee. Unfortunately, due to high import costs, they are usually around the same price or a little more expensive than in other countries.
Comfort food - many imported brands are available in supermarkets, particularly in expat areas, specialized import shops, or in large supermarket chains. However, not everything may be available, so if you have a specific product or brand then it might be worth taking a stock with you.
Medicine - domestic and international doctors are available in Vietnam, and many medicines can be bought over the counter. However, you can’t buy:
- Strong insect repellent (containing deet)
- Multi-vitamins and minerals (you can buy individual vitamin pills or multi-vitamins, but these rarely contain minerals)