This is part of a series where I break down the costs for airfare and lodging for a specific trip, as well as how much PTO time was spent. I am not including costs for food and activities as those prices fluctuate based on traveler preferences. In general, you can assume that airfare and lodging will be the bulk of your costs.
Chicago-Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) airfare
In August 2017, Secret Flying published a fare for round trip flights between Chicago and Ho Chi Minh City for $410 in November. I was looking to travel over Thanksgiving anyway, and I’d always wanted to see Vietnam. I quickly booked the tickets on Cheapoair for my son and I, and contacted my best friend/travel buddy to see if she’d like to go as well. She booked her tickets immediately.
We’re based in Minneapolis, so we had to get tickets to Chicago to pick up that flight deal. Minneapolis to Chicago round trip: $200
Saigon hotel – Part 1
We stayed at Eastin Grand Hotel in Saigon, a modern, upscale hotel with a rooftop pool, multiple on-site restaurants, and a rainfall showerhead in the bathroom. I said I was going to splurge on this trip and I did. I booked the Deluxe Family Room (king size bed and a sofa): $303 for 3 nights. My girlfriend booked a Standard room at $266 for 3 nights.
Mui Ne beach resort
I searched around for a 2-bedroom suite so we could all stay together. I originally wanted a suite with its own private pool, but those were prohibitively expensive. We settled on a slightly-less-expensive room with a private hot tub and balcony instead at The Cliff Resort and Residences. 2-bedroom suite overlooking the China Sea: $981 for four nights.
Saigon hotel – Part 2
Back to Saigon for our last night. We were only going to be here for a few hours before our flight departed at 2AM, so I decided to stay close to the airport. We booked the ibis Hotel Saigon Airport, and it was just as cute and youthful as every other ibis I’ve stayed at. I also wanted a room with a separate living area and bedroom so my son could have a quiet space to sleep before we took off. One-bedroom studio: $81 for one night. My girlfriend booked a Standard Room: $59 per night.
My son and I stayed in our own room for the Saigon portion of the trip, and we shared with mygirlfriend for the Mui Ne portion. So for the purposes of this cost breakdown, I’m going to use my Saigon hotel costs divided by two, and the Mui Ne hotel cost divided by three. Note that my girlfriend paid less for her Saigon hotel rooms, so her total costs were slightly lower.
Airfare Chicago-Ho Chi Minh City on China Eastern: $410 per person
Airfare Minneapolis-Chicago on United: $200 per person
Hotel in Saigon for 3 nights: $133 per person ($44 per night, per person)
Resort in Mui Ne for 4 nights: $327 per person ($82 per night, per person)
Hotel in Saigon for 1 night: $40 per person
Total airfare and lodging for 1 person, 8 nights: $1,110
Paid over the course of: 4 months
PTO time: 5 days