I Took 2 Sleeper Buses in Vietnam

  • Post category:Travel

Sharing my experiences to manage your expectations

Bus 1: From Ninh Binh to Sapa

Bus – VIP Sleeper 41 by Grouptour

Source: Grouptour
Sleeper Bus Interior | Source: Grouptour
  • The bus arrived 15 minutes later than the official start time.
  • Before reaching the sleeper seats, I had to take off my shoes and place them in a plastic bag.
  • No seats allocated, free for all, first come first serve.
  • I slept in the top bunk and had to figure out how to maneuver myself onto the top bunk.
  • Width-wise, I could lie flat and my shoulders would almost touch the window or side bar. I also had a day bag which I brought on board with me and that took up some space in the bottom half of the bed.
  • Length-wise, the bed would’ve fit me just nicely but I placed my shoes at the end of the bed so I still had to curl my legs. I think that if you are above 160cm, you would find the sleeper seat a tight squeeze for you ):
  • Water was occasionally dripping from the aircon so I covered myself with the blanket provided.
  • In the 7-8 hours bus journey, I recall that there were 2 rest stops for toilets and snacks and we were provided slippers to walk outside of the bus. Visitors were required to pay 3000 VND per toilet entry.
  • I had planned to take a night sleeper bus so that I could avoid wasting daylight on long commutes, but I feel that it’s quite tough to have a good night’s sleep on the bus. Reasons being
    1. some roads were bumpy and winding,
    2. there were many passengers on board, so noise was unavoidable, and
    3. during the rest stops the bus would turn off the aircon and the stuffiness would make one’s sleep rather unpleasant
  • For my bus ride in particular, we had to switch buses in the wee hours, and I have no wonder why till today ._.

Bus 2: Sapa to Hanoi

Bus – Eco Sleeper Bus by Kadham Bus

Kadham Bus | Source: Author
Kadham Bus Interior | Source: Author
  • This bus felt so luxurious! There were only 2 rows of sleeper seats instead of 3 and each passenger had their own “cabin” with curtains for privacy.
  • There was Wi-Fi on board too, which was not present in the previous sleeper bus I took.
  • Similar to the previous bus, I had to take off my shoes before boarding and was provided slippers to walk around at rest stops.
  • The bed fit me just nicely length-wise, but the width was quite spacious!
  • I took this bus during the day (2 pm) and reached Hanoi at around 7+ pm. In this 5hr+ bus journey, there were also 2 rest stops and thankfully, I was able to take a few naps throughout the bus ride.
  • The bus captain would use a microphone and speaker to inform passengers whenever we were reaching a rest stop or our destination, which I greatly appreciated. In comparison, the bus captain(s) for the previous sleeper bus only knew how to speak Vietnamese and didn’t make any announcements. So, most of the time, I was just following other passengers on board.

No doubt, I enjoyed my second sleeper bus ride more, mainly because I had more space! 😀

Thank you for reading!