Vietnam’s official currency is the Dong, which cannot be purchased outside Vietnam. The main banks in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City can handle a fairly broad range of currencies nowadays, but the dollar is still the most widely accepted. We therefore recommend taking some US$ cash. American Express, Visa and Thomas Cook checks are the most recognized brands. It’s a good idea to arrive with at least some small denomination dollar bills ($1’s, $5’s and $10’s) to get you from the airport into town and to a bank. Even if they are open, the airport exchange desks offer unfavorable rates. If you do bring cash into Vietnam, make sure they are not badly tattered as they may be refused.