Frequently Asked Questions

What can I expect joining one of your tours?

You can expect to improve your photography, develop your personal vision, make new friends, discover new horizons and new cultures, have fun, experience adventure, be in awe of this great city of Saigon, deepen or rekindle your passion for photography, and come back with memorable photos and anecdotes.

Besides taking photographs what else can I expect?

Each tour is customized to fit the photographers objectives. If one of your goals is to improve your photography skills we can discuss:
– Ways to become more creative
– Learning to see – how to visualize an image
– Composition, ISO, Shutter Speed, F-Stop
– Panning, intentional blurring, using motion…

What is the group size?

Our maximum group size varies depending on the tour. We try to limit the group size enough to give every photographer plenty of individual attention, and also to make it easier for us to blend into the environment and not be overly intrusive when we’re meeting the locals.

– Saigon Landmarks Photowalk : 12 max.
– Cholon Backstreets : 5 max.
– Saigon Scoot’n’shoot : 3 max.
– One-on-one workshops : 3 max.

– 24h in the Mekong Delta: 6 max.
– Mekong Delta hidden gems: 2 min. / 6 max.

– Ha Giang, the roof of Vietnam: 6 max.
– North Vietnam Ethnic Trails: 6 max.
– The vietnam adventurer: 6 max.

What shouldn’t I bring?

Bring only what you need. Unless otherwise stated DO NOT bring any extra equipment such as full size tripods, luggage or extra bags. The less you carry the more you will get out of your photo tour experience!

I am a solo traveler. Can I still book your tours?

Yes, we welcome bookings for solo travelers on all our tours.

What payment methods do you accept?

A 20% deposit is required to confirm the booking of any Saigon Day Tripper tour, The remaining 80% balance for the trip cost can be paid either on the day of the tour, by cash in Vietnam Dong or US Dollars, or in advance via a Paypal link that will be provided in your confirmation email.
If you choose to pay in cash, please make sure that your bills are in good condition, without any tears or markings on them. It is very difficult to exchange bills in Vietnam unless they are in near perfect condition.

Do I need to put down a deposit/prepay to book a tour?

To reserve a booking for our Saigon Day-Tripper tours we require a 20% deposit while a 50% deposit is required to book our Mekong Explorer tours.

Do you offer pickup/drop-off service at my hotel/home?

For our Saigon-Day tours we offer pickup service in Districts 1, 3 & 5.  For guests staying outside of our pickup area, we kindly request that you meet us at the Opera House stairs, or if you like us to pick you up/drop of you can require it by selecting this option during the booking process for a US$10 supplement.

What happen if it rains?

As a general rule the rain never lasts long (about 30-45 minutes), then either we will go under cover to continue to photograph or take a coffee talking picture.

What is a Photo Tour?

A Photo Tour is one where photography is the primary objective. This means we’ll be getting up early and going to bed late as we chase the best light for our photographs. If you like a relaxed vacation where you sleep in every morning, this might not be the trip for you. We’ll have slower periods during the middle of the day when you can rest and relax. The itineraries are setup to allow maximum time for photography. If you like adventure, exploration, and taking awesome pictures, then you’ll have a great time on these trips.

It sounds like you need to be a photographer to take your tours. I only take pictures for fun, will I fit in?

Absolutely! Our tours are for photographers meaning anyone with a camera. Those that join range from complete beginners to people who like to record their travels for memory’s sake to semi-professional photographers who shoot for competitions and exhibits. Our tours are geared towards taking you to the most photogenic places in a relaxed manner allowing free time, where possible, to explore and photograph.

What should I bring on my photo tour?

– Your camera of course; digital camera is a MUST – be it point & shoot, D-SLR, or smartphone (SD).
– A wide lense (16-35mm), a standard zoom lens (24-70mm) and a telephoto (70-200mm), bring a prime lens for portraiture if you have one (50, 85, 100 or 135mm) (ME+VA)
– A laptop or a tablet for photo reviews (from 3 days tours)
– Plenty of memory cards (formatted and ready to go); always carry a backup.
– Extra batteries for your camera and flash (if you have one).
– A travelling tripod (ME+VA)
– Your camera’s manual may be helpful (ME+VA).
– Small pocket size note pad and pen.
– Most importantly, bring your learning hats.

What should I wear?

Wear comfortable, hot weather-appropriate clothes including comfortable walking shoes for your photo tour.
For tours in North Vietnam, evenings can be a little cooler in the mountains so bring a jacket or a light sweater.

In what type of hotel will we be staying?

We select accommodation primarily for their proximity to the places we go to take pictures. In big cities like Ho Chi Minh, Hanoi, Can Tho … we select 2/3 star hotels conveniently located with all the comfort, in the smaller towns we offer simple but clean hotels. In more remote areas of the northern mountains and the Mekong Delta we might stay in homestay, in houses with charm, where one usually sleeps in a large common room with simple comfort: a mattress, mosquito net and a curtain for some privacy. Bathrooms are equipped with hot shower and western style toilet.
Ground transportation is provided in either a passenger van or large SUV with plenty of space for your stuff.

Are meals included?

Yes, all meals are included. Our trips are also an opportunity for culinary discovery. We introduce you to the authentic Vietnamese cuisine, taking you through local specialty restaurants but also where possible in our favorite little street restaurants.

Should I have a travel insurance?

We highly recommend having your own trip insurance in the event something unexpected happens. This will also cover any portion of your deposit we are unable to refund in case you have to cancel.

What if I have to Cancel?

Saigon Day Trippers (Half day to full day tours)
For cancellations made more than 96 hours from the start of your tour, we will refund 100% of your deposit as well as the remaining balance if it was paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 96 hours to 24 hours from the start of your tour, the deposit will be forfeited. The remaining balance, if it was paid in advance, will be refunded.
For cancellations made less than 24 hours from the start of your tour and in case of no-show, no refund will be provided.

Mekong Explorers (24-hours to 3 days tours)
1) 24H In The Mekong Delta tour
For cancellations made more than 7 days from the start of your tour, we will refund 100% of your deposit as well as the remaining balance if it was paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 7 days to 24 hours from the start of your tour, the deposit we will forfeited. The remaining balance will be refund if it was paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 24 hours from the start of your tour and in case of no-show, no refund will be provided.

2) Mekong Delta Hidden Gems
For cancellations made more than 14 days from the start of your tour, we will refund 100% of your deposit as well as the remaining balance if it was paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 14 days to 24 hours from the start of your tour, the deposit we will forfeited. The remaining balance will be refund if it was paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 24 hours from the start of your tour and in case of no-show, no refund will be provided.

Vietnam Adventurers (4 days to 15 days tours)
For cancellations made more than 60 days from the start of your tour , we will refund 100% of your deposit as well as the remaining balance if it was paid in advance less a US$200 administrative fee.
For cancellations made Less than 60 days to 30 days from the start of your tour, the deposit will be forfeited. The remaining balance will be refund if i twas paid in advance.
For cancellations made less than 30 days from the start of your tour, we will charge a 100% cancellation fee.

All Tours:
If you must cancel a reservation, contact VPA as soon as possible. VPA requires a cancellation notice to be sent in writing (email is preferred).

VPA cannot offer partial refunds for unused services. If you have to cut your trip short, no refunds can be given but we can offer you a discount if you sign-up for a future trip.
Cancellation fees and forfeited deposits are non-transferable. If you sign-up for another trip, we can apply part of the lost deposit towards the new trip. Contact us for details.

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