Flight Review: Vietnam Airlines – Ho Chi Minh City to Haiphong

Flight Review: Vietnam Airlines – Ho Chi Minh City to Haiphong

Flight: Vietnam Airlines VN 1184
From: Ho Chi Minh City (SGN) To: Haiphong (HPH)

I flew with Vietnam Airlines from Ho Chi Minh City to Haiphong. At the time of my booking there were four airlines serving this route (Bamboo Airways, Jetstar Pacific, Vietjet Air, and Vietnam Airlines). I compared flights on Skyscanner and went with Vietnam Airlines for the time of day. It wasn’t the cheapest flight but it wasn’t too much difference from the other airlines. The total price with a bag was 2,100,000 VND ($90.60 USD).

SGN-HPH booking

I’ve flown with Vietnam Airlines a few times now, and their checking in experience at Tan Son Nhat airport is very easy. I use the self check-in kiosks at the airport, where you can select a seat of your choice.

VN self check-in

The bag drop line was small, so checking in was done under 10 minutes.

VN bag drop

Todays flight was from Gate 10, which is one of the lower gates where you get a bus to the plane. I used to think at only the low cost airlines got the bus, but it seems that the airport is running out of space for even the full-service airlines.

Gate 10

There is a planned new airport for Ho Chi Minh City, but that is years away from opening.

Tarmac boarding

One of the reasons I don’t like getting the bus is being exposed to the elements. The sun was out when the bus left, then as I was getting on the plane I looked behind me and saw this monster rain cloud.

Incoming rain

It started pouring just as I got onboard. Bad timing though for the passengers on the second bus.

Rainy day

Some newspapers in Vietnamese (and one English paper was also available).


One of the main reasons to pick Vietnam Airlines for domestic Vietnam flights is for the legroom. I have about a fistful of legroom here, compared to about a fingers width on the low cost airlines.

Fistful of legroom

Vietnam Airlines usually has two inflight magazines. Today there was only one – Heritage Fashion. This one doesn’t include a route map.

Heritage Fashion June 2019

Vietnam Airlines provide a free snack service onboard.

Snack Box

I was going to say a meal service, but it is definitely a snack.


There is a limited drink service as well, with the option of coke, water, or tea/coffee.


I usually get a window seat on domestic/short international flights. Looking out at the mountains and coastline reminded me of how much more of Vietnam I need to see.

Coastal Vietnam

Cat Bi International Airport is the airport that serves Haiphong. It got a new terminal and new runway in 2016, and it has a few international flights.

Cat Bi International Airport

Flight VN 1184 departs SGN at 10.30 and arrives at HPH at 12.30 for a scheduled flying time of 2 hours. Actual flying time is about 1 hour and 40 minutes. We lost time at SGN waiting on the tarmac in the departure queue, but it wasn’t overly late in the end.

Vietnam Airlines at Haiphong Airport

Vietnam Airlines is a member of the Skyteam Alliance. On previous Vietnam Airlines flights I was using my Delta account to collect points, but I wasn’t being credited with domestic flights. I’ve now joined the Lotus Miles program and will use that in the future.

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