Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Vietnam Story

"Hi my Name is Blah Blah... What brings you to Vietnam?"

This is one of the first questions that people will ask you as an expat living in Vietnam. EVERYONE has a story, everyone is here for different reasons. So what's my story? Why am I writing a blog? Well here it is...


I was born and raised as an Australian with a Vietnamese background. All of 20 something years of my life I along with many of my friends did the usual, you know... school, university and heading into the workforce. But then it gets to a point in your life where you start asking yourself, "where is my life heading? and "What is your goal?" No.... it's not a mid-life crisis, but maybe a quarter life crisis. Less severe and more manageable!
So after 6 years in developing a successful career in an industry that I absolutely hated (Maybe hate is such too strong of word...), I decided to do something completely out of the ordinary... Move to Vietnam! The opportunity presented itself to me. Come to Vietnam and establish a creative agency. If you knew what I did for a living previously, you would know that moving into the marketing and creative industry is basically on the other end of the spectrum.

EXCITED. An Adventure!!

In Jan 2009, I made a life-changing decision, packed up my 3-suitcases three weeks later and moved to HCMC and have been here ever since. Crazy? Well so far it's been the best decision I've ever made. I'm loving what I do, although living and doing business here is a challenge, but I'm discovering new things everyday.


Quick definition of a "Viet Kieu": Someone who was originally from Vietnam or has a Vietnamese background and has lived in or is a citizen of another country (mainly western country) for a considerable amount of time, and has returned to Vietnam. Although, how long do you have to be living in another country to be considered a Viet Kieu? I don't know but I will give you my thoughts later on.

So whether you're traveling or living in Vietnam, the people will classify you as a Viet Kieu. It is pronounced... "Viet Q." I am a Viet Q. Hence my blog title "VQ in Vietnam"


I've been here over a year and to be honest, whilst running a business, I haven't had much of the opportunity to explore the city, meet new people and share my experience. It is my new years resolution and this blog will be a way to share my experience about:

** Living in Vietnam - the country, the people,
** Business in Vietnam
** New discoveries

Hopefully, some bloggers may find it interesting and if you're moving to Vietnam, I may be able to share some insights. I do not claim to be a expert whatsoever, my stories are just my experiences only. Follow my blog or not follow my blog... Either way I need an engine to relieve the stress and express my self. I need a hobby and a reason to get out there and explore!

It's my first blog... and I hope to make a good contribution to the blogging community!


  1. Reading your story makes me think about taking that six-month secondment my boss offered me at our campus in Vietnam. Decisions, decisions

  2. Hi,

    Your story is somewhat similar to mine. I went through almost exactly the same things. Apart from the little annoyances like nose picking, spitting etc.. it's been more good than bad. I went from being a software developer in Melbourne to running an import-export business here. I have more free time now to follow my hobbies. Life is never a dull moment here. Looking forwards to reading more of your blog.

  3. Thanks for your comments VTs. It has been a very interesting experience. Please keep in touch.

    And VT - Just do it!! You never know what what's around the corner. 6 month will fly.