Bank, currency exchange and ATM

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Banks & Currency Exchange — The best service (24-hr. ATMs with guards) is at the Australia New Zealand Bank (ANZ), 14 Le Thai To St. (tel. 04/825-8190); Citibank, 17 Ngo Quyen St. (tel. 04/3825-1950); and Vietcombank, 198 Tran Quan Khai (tel. 04/3934-3137). Most banks will exchange foreign currency, either U.S. dollars or euros, during normal banking hours. You’ll also find a few money-changing storefronts along Hang Bac Street in the Old Quarter and around the edge of Hoan Kiem Lake. Hanoi Sacombank, 88 Ly Thuong Kiet (tel. 04/3942-8095), is one to try.

Avoid exchanging on the black market. Black-market money-changers will approach you outside of the major banks; in the past, you could get a much improved rate from them, but today the advantage is nominal and travelers often find themselves left with a few counterfeit or out-of-circulation notes in the mix — it’s not worth the trouble.

ATMs — Most major banks in Hanoi and even countrywide now offer ATM service. Look for Vietcombank and Incombank branch locations throughout the city. New ATMs are popping up all over. Ask any hotel concierge where to find one. Consult with your bank office at home to inquire about international ATM usage fees. Most range from just $1 to $1.50.