Stringent currency regulations have eased in recent years, and that process continues today. Local salaries must, by law, be paid in VND (Vietnam Dong), but getting money out of Vietnam has gone from nearly impossible to relatively simple.

Proof of income is required to exchange Dong for foreign currency–a work permit or pay stub will suffice to prove you have acquired your money legally. Customs Declaration Form, labor contracts also work. Once you have changed your local currency for the currency of your choice, money can be transferred by draft or electronic remittance anywhere in the world. Having a local account at ANZ or HSBC will expedite the process, as the forms can be handled in one step, and the money sent directly from your account. Online transfers have not yet arrived in Vietnam–it’s still necessary to fill out paper forms in the bank office. While local banks offer the same services, the process is usually smoother with an international bank.

Western Union is another option that also requires a proof of income. Western Union is nearly ubiquitous in Hanoi, and you can see that black and yellow sign in English from nearly any street corner. To transfer money out of Vietnam through Western Union, use the Western Union service in any local or international bank. As mentioned previously, international banks generally have better English service and greater knowledge of international protocols.