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Planning to Retire in Da Nang Next Year

We're planning to retire in Vietnam next year due to my husband health. He had 2 strokes and not going back to work anymore. We won't be able to afford the cost of living here California with his small retirement money. We've been watching youtube about expats who currently lives in Vietnam and so far everything seems very positive especially the cost of living and food. Is it hard to apply for a 5 years visa in Vietnam?

To get a 5 year visa you or your husband will need to be Vietnamese or Viet Kieu. I see you speak Tagalog, therefore I presume you are Filipino, but what about your husband.

USA passports can get 1 year easily and cheap via internet. One of my friend did it.

Keep in mind the tradeoffs.  Cost of living is cheap but health coverage isn't anywhere near US standards.

I am assuming that your husband is eligible for disability based Medicare after his two strokes regardless of his age.  Although Vietnamese medical treatment may be a lot less expensive than the full amount charged in the US, it still would be likely to be more expensive than the net cost of the same for someone on Medicare.  Minor visits and procedures are inexpensive but another stroke for your husband could result in a bill for several thousand US and Vietnamese hospitals expect to be paid cash.

My wife and I too would like to retire in Da Nang, but as I have had heart surgery myself, we face the same dilemma.

Thanks for all the responses. I know  Vietnam doesn't have good hospitals and healthcare system. Our plan is to come back every six months in the US for health check-ups. I heard and watched on TV that Thailand has a good health care systems and some doctors graduated here in the US. That's another option we're considering. It's not that far away from Vietnam. Actually, my husband doctor suggests that it might be a good idea. We'll be more relaxed and less stress. The cost of living is very cheap and the foods are healthier because it's more organics unlike here in the US. If you buy organic food here are way too expensive.:(

aimhigh888 :

Thanks for all the responses. I know  Vietnam doesn't have good hospitals and healthcare system. Our plan is to come back every six months in the US for health check-ups. I heard and watched on TV that Thailand has a good health care systems and some doctors graduated here in the US. That's another option we're considering. It's not that far away from Vietnam. Actually, my husband doctor suggests that it might be a good idea. We'll be more relaxed and less stress. The cost of living is very cheap and the foods are healthier because it's more organics unlike here in the US. If you buy organic food here are way too expensive.:(

Chemicals in food is a big problem in Viet Nam. Farmers here LOVE chemicals.

Actually my commentary on Vietnamese medicine was not related to quality but the fact that you would need to pay the full uninsured price.  I have seen a few that were not, but most doctors in Vietnam are actually quite well educated.  The fact that you are most likely going to see those that speak English is effectively a filter in favor of those who have some overseas education.

I was born in America but am of Vietnamese descent. My relatives were farmers during the 50's and still are today. I have extensive knowledge of the food industry in both countries. I can assure  you that the food in Vietnam is not as healthy as in America. I am not talking about the actual  dishes and amount of fast food and unhealthy chain restaurants such as The Cheesecake Factory that reside in America. I'm talking about the components and what you are interested in;  mainly organic vegetables. A lot of the vegetables and produce are now coming from nearby China/Thailand/Cambodia. Every single one of those countries uses chemicals to speed up the growth process in addition to prolonging the shelf life. There is NO regulation whatsoever on the stuff that is coming in from these countries. Because they can grow stuff so much quicker with better yields, they are selling it for a fraction of what good  honest Vietnamese farmers are selling it for. My relatives used to travel to Saigon 4-5 times a week delivering their goods by  hundreds of kilos. Sadly it is down to 1-2 times a week now. Despite that, they will never ever spray or treat their produce and vegetables with cancer causing chemicals like the countries above. I can also assure you that there is not much regulation on the organic produce in Vietnam, and  if it is very cheap, it is not organic at all. Remember that even in America  where the regulations are much more strict than in Vietnam, farmers can still use pesticides and fertilizers on their organic products  as long as it's below a certain amount.

Vietnam, and especially Da Nang is a great place to live. However, it sounds like you may need to spend more time researching this life altering decision. Watching a couple expats on YouTube is not the best way to gauge how your life would be once you move here. Feel free to PM me with any specific  questions you may have.

Also, wouldn't having to purchase 4 round trip tickets a year for the both of you combined defeat the whole purpose of trying to take advantage of the lower cost of living in Vietnam? Those round trip tickets will add up very quickly.

Another consideration, I presume your husband is on  meds, so make sure these are available in VN. Mailing is unreliable in my experience.

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