Dating in Vietnam

A date between a woman and a man
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Updated 2023-11-12 09:35

If you're considering moving to Hanoi, or Ho Chi Minh City, the dating scene may be of interest to you. Although the 21st century has provided us with dozens of innovative new ways to meet people, the old-fashioned methods are still just as relevant. Therefore, we will discuss the entire spectrum of dating in Vietnam throughout this article.

The best ways to meet someone in Vietnam

Young people in Vietnam (18-26) love to socialize and are frequently out and about in large groups. In Vietnam, embracing the going-out culture will be one of the easiest ways for you to make new friends or find a significant other. If you do find yourself going on a date with a Vietnamese citizen, it is not uncommon for a friend to join so everyone feels safe or to meet family very early on.

Another great way to meet people is by signing up for a fitness or outdoor activity. Meeting someone this way automatically gives you something in common and is easy to connect with or schedule doing the same event together again. It's also easy to suggest going for a cold beverage after the event that you've completed together. Many marathons and sports clubs meet regularly in the major cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City so you can keep your social life and heart happy at the same time.

Dating apps in Vietnam

Dating apps and websites have changed the game because they allow you to use Google translate or for your date to take time before responding. Some of the most popular online dating applications in Vietnam are:

While each application offers a different yet similar platform, if you are using more than one, you are likely to see a repeat of the same faces. Even if you don't find a love match, you may still meet a new friend, and who knows who they'll introduce you to!

Dating customs and stigmas in Vietnam

While the younger generations are adopting a more Western approach to dating culture nowadays, Vietnamese families will still adhere to many traditions. If you've been seeing someone for a while, the prospect of meeting their family will arise. There is no guarantee they will speak English, and naturally, your partner may be a little biased in their translations of what you say. Therefore, the family will most likely invite friends around when you meet for the first time; one of them will likely speak English.

At the first meeting, bringing a gift of fruit for your partner's mother will be highly appreciated. Also, to avoid embarrassment, discuss with your partner before the meeting, and they'll likely tell you exactly what to purchase or bring with you. You will both want to make the best impression for the relationship to move forward, so don't try to go with the element of surprise and work together.

Be prepared for a lot of questions and a lot of drinking. It may feel like an interrogation, but this family is curious about your intentions with their child and probably hasn't heard a lot about you before this initial meeting. While out with your significant other, let them lead on how much affection in public they are comfortable with. Many Vietnamese people are still quite conservative, so avoid kissing and touching in public to avoid a disagreement later.

Vietnam is a flourishing country and no longer considered a third-world developing nation. You will be meeting different people with amazing insights, but there are always a few red flags to watch out for. If your Vietnamese partner consistently wants you to invest in businesses or continues to only see you on the terms of gifts and meals paid for, it may not be a lifelong relationship. Vietnamese people who are truly interested in getting to know you will want to spend time in cafes with a lot of communication and a lot of picture taking for social media. Be prepared for an onslaught of matching garments that will look adorable in photographs.

If you and your Vietnamese partner are talking about marriage, make sure to discuss finances and expectations for elderly parents. Commonly, taking care of parents will fall on the shoulders of the children and, thus, their spouse. It is also common to live with family or have family come to live with you, inside or out of Vietnam.

The LGBTGI scene in Vietnam

LGBTQI rights are difficult to understand in Vietnam. While the country is mainly progressive, there are a few backward or traditional mindsets towards relationship styles and gender identity. As a foreigner, you will not experience outright homophobic actions and are safe to be out publicly and hold hands or live in local areas as a same-sex couple. Local citizens face the brunt of pressure from family and friends, resulting in a mentality that “it's fine for others but not our family." Over the last five years, many landmark decisions have been made by the government, and there are also several activism groups working towards full inclusive equality in the country.

The good news is that in 2015, legislation on same-sex marriages was changed, but not in the positive way you expect. While same-sex marriages in Vietnam aren't illegal anymore, they are not legal either and instead have been removed from the legislation entirely, making them a neutral ground. As of 2022, any couples falling into the LGBTQI category may have their marriage blessed via traditional Vietnamese ceremonies, but only marriage licenses from abroad will be recognized legally in Vietnam.

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.