You’ve moved away from Vietnam to live and work in a new country, and you’re looking to send money back to your loved ones at home. The last thing you’ll want to is to pay high transfer fees or get uncompetitive exchange rates.
Whether you want to convert euros, pounds, dollars or any other currency into dong, it’s useful to have an understanding of exactly how it all works. This way, you’ll be able to make an informed decision when sending money to Vietnam to support the people closest to you. This guide covers all the basics on one handy page.
Currency exchange explained
An exchange rate tells you how two currencies compare with each other, value-wise. In other words, it lets you know how much of a particular currency you can purchase with the other. Let’s say you’ve moved from Vietnam to the United States, and want to send money back to your relatives. Checking the exchange rate, you see that 1 USD = 22,656.00 VND (the hypothetical exchange rate).
This tells you that, at this precise moment in time, you can purchase 22,656 dong with one US dollar. It’s important to note that the relationship between currencies will fluctuate. Several months before, perhaps you would have been able to buy 23,410 dong with your single US dollar. In fact, shifting rates mean that the conversion amount may change from one minute to the next.
There are a number of elements that can influence exchange rates, including:
- Interest rates
- Government debt
- Import/export activity
- Political instability
- Economic instability
- Demand for the currency by international traders
If for example there’s a new political development in the country, it might have significant repercussions for how the currency is valued on the global markets. The key thing to take away from all of this is that sending money to Vietnam can result in your recipient getting different amounts in dong depending on the exact moment you choose to make the remittance.
Why can Vietnamese dong conversion be so high?
Issued by the State Bank of Vietnam, Vietnamese dong is one of the weaker currencies in the world right now. This explains why you’re able to convert single units of currencies such as dollars and euros into such a large amount of dong. The reasons for this are multi-faceted and rooted in long-standing socioeconomic factors stemming back to 1986, when the country shifted from a purely centrally-run economy to more of a free market economy.
Years of inflation, and a relative lack of interest in dong by foreign traders, have helped keep the value of the currency low. There has also been some controversy in recent times with the US Treasury alleging in 2020 that the Vietnamese government had been intervening to deliberately keep the dong low to make exports from Vietnam cheaper.
Fortunately, you don’t have to delve into the thorny complexities of international economics in order to land the best dong exchange rates. The easiest way to send money to Vietnam without paying over the odds is, quite simply, to find a remittance service that doesn’t charge high fees or apply a disadvantageous exchange rate.
Sending money to Vietnam: converting to dong
If you’re looking to convert dollars, euros, pounds, riyals or another currency into Vietnamese dong, there are two main options to choose from. You can make the remittance via your bank, or via dedicated international transfer service.
Bank: It’s natural to consider your bank as a convenient option when sending money to Vietnam. As your funds are already sitting in your account, it’s simply a matter of instructing the bank to make the transfer, with no need to create a third-party account elsewhere.
Money transfer service: You may find that using a dedicated transfer service is a more affordable way to make an EUR to VND, USD to VND, GBP to VND or any other currency to VND exchange. Transfer companies which are based entirely online, such as Remitly, don’t have to pay the high running costs that come with brick-and-mortar premises, which often means they can afford to charge lower fees to their customers.
Using Remitly to send money to Vietnam
The digital money transfer company Remitly has partnerships with a range of trusted financial institutions in Vietnam. This means you can easily transfer dong to your family and friends back home, whenever you need to.
To get started with Remitly, you just need to set up an account – which you can do through the website or mobile app. All that’s required is some basic personal details like your name, phone number and payment information. You’ll then be able to select how you’d like to send money to Vietnam, entering your recipient’s details when prompted. We may ask for additional documentation depending on the amount sent or if we are unable to verify your identity.
Thanks to Remitly, there are multiple ways your loved one can receive dong. The money can be transferred directly to their bank or mobile money account. Alternatively, they can go to a designated location to pick up the remittance in cash, or even have the money delivered to their door by courier.
To know what the exchange rates are right now, click here for US dollars to dong, here for pounds to dong, here for euros to dong, here for Australian dollars to dong, and here for Canadian dollars to dong.
Sending money from Vietnam: converting VND to another currency
While sending money to Vietnam is straightforward, doing the reverse can be a more time-consuming process. This is because Vietnamese nationals may have to produce documents to verify they are requesting the dong to dollar, dong to pound, dong to euro or similar transfer for an allowable reason – for example, paying for university fees or overseas medical bills, supporting relatives based abroad, or funding work trips and holidays.
What about exchanging VND outside of Vietnam?
It’s possible to exchange Vietnamese dong for other currencies while you’re abroad. The options you may be able to use include:
- Brick-and-mortar currency exchange desks
- Local bank branches
- Bank card transactions
- Bank wire
Currency exchange desks and banks can be convenient, as these are found scattered throughout so many cities and towns across the world, and you’ll often be able to exchange currencies spontaneously, without planning ahead. However, you may not get the most beneficial rates or lowest fees this way.
Similarly, while using your Vietnamese bank card to make payments and withdraw local currency from ATMs may be a lower effort way to make transactions, it can also be an expensive option. High fees may be charged when you do this.
If you’re settling in a country for a long time, it may be a cheaper, more practical option to create a local bank account. Read our guides to opening a bank account in the US, the UK, in France, and in Australia.
Finding the best dong exchange rate
However you decide to convert currency, it’s useful to have an awareness of how the exchange is calculated by the remittance service provider. By looking at the numbers yourself, you can make a clear-eyed comparison between the different options. The formula for working out the currency conversion is simple, and looks like this:
Send currency x Exchange Rate = Receive Amount
Let’s consider some hypothetical scenarios to put this formula into a real-life context. You can of course change these numbers to reflect whatever you’re looking to transfer or exchange.
How to find euro to Vietnamese dong rates
Imagine you want to send 100 EUR to Vietnam. The calculation using the current exchange rate at the time of writing would be:
100 EUR x 27,309.07 VND = 2,730,907 VND
At this point, you can subtract any relevant fees to see what your recipient will actually receive in Vietnam. Let’s say your remittance company or bank applies a €10 fee for each transfer. This would equate to 273,090.7 dong. Subtracting this from the overall amount, you’ll see what you’ll actually get for your money:
2,730,907 VND – 273,090.7 VND = 2,457,816.3 VND
With Remitly, as of this writing the fee for transferring 100 EUR to Vietnam would be 4.99 EUR (when you choose Express and pay using your debit or credit card and your recipient receives in VND), or 136,272.3 VND. So, in this particular example, your recipient would get a lot more dong for the same amount of euros.
How to find US dollar to Vietnamese dong rates
To take another example, say you’re transferring 100 USD. The calculation as of this writing for this is:
100 USD x 22,656 VND = 2,265,600 VND
Again, you’ll just have to subtract any applicable fees to see what the final amount in dong will be.
Getting the best deal
As this guide has shown, you have your pick of ways in which to send money to Vietnam. It’s an important decision to make. After all, having worked hard to earn money in your new country, you probably don’t want to end up spending over the odds when you’re transferring funds to people you love back home. By doing some research beforehand, you can choose a remittance method that will give the people you care about the most amount in dong whenever you transfer.
Remitly is used by millions of people to make international money transfers. Our easy-to-use mobile app allows you to send money to Vietnam whenever you need to, with low fees and great exchange rates. Visit our homepage to discover more.