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  • Legally employed without a permit.

    Disclaimer on Legal Documents Published on Atexpats The direct translations of Vietnamese legal bulletins and laws published on this website are not in themselves official documents, and are provided for educational and reference purposes only. While these versions are believed to be relatively accurate, Atexpats is not a legal agency and is not licensed nor qualified to interpret Vietnamese law in any official capacity. For the most accurate legal information, please consult with a registered law firm. Highlighting and summarial overviews of these laws contained in this article are observations added by Atexpats in order to draw readers’ attention to clauses that may be relevant to foreigners and are not intended as interpretations or guides. Atexpats may not be held liable for the actions of any individual or entity based on this information. The 2013 Labour Code of Vietnam , supplemented by the recent regulation ( #102/2013/NĐ-CP ), outlines the scenarios in which a foreign national working in Vietnam is not required to obtain a work permit. Individuals that are granted this exemption must fall into one of the following groups:       Contributing member or owner of a limited liability company. A member on the board of directors in a joint stock company. The head of a representative office, non-governmental organisation, or an international project taking place in Vietnam. Those offering their services in the country for less than three months. Those coming to Vietnam for less than three months to handle an urgent situation, such as a technical problem or complex technological malfunction that would affect or threaten to affect production. This applies only if the problem cannot be solved by a Vietnamese expert or a foreign expert that is currently in Vietnam. A foreign lawyer who has been licensed to practice law in Vietnam under the

  • Stretch your way to fitness and good health.

    Yoga has had a presence in Ho Chi Minh City since the early 1990s, but it wasn’t until the last decade that this healthy form of exercise began to grow in popularity as more and more people came to recognise the advantages it represented. During this period, running a yoga centre was one of the most lucrative health businesses in the city, and instructing in yoga was a respected, fashionable, and relatively high-earning position. Due to its wild popularity, however, yoga in Vietnam (and especially in HCMC) became greatly marketised, and in many ways the essence of yoga has been diluted to suit local preferences. This is readily apparent from the kinds of yoga courses offered in flyers from 'Yoga Beauty Centres' such as ‘Slim-down Yoga’, ‘Sexy Yoga’ and so on. The snazzy image of the yoga business has thus faded over time, courtesy of the countless yoga businesses that sprang up along with this trend. It’s said that yoga is most suitable for people who are over 25, helping them to stay healthy – but for younger people who are already in shape, yoga classes are thought to be a way to maintain beauty and hold on to a good figure. It was in meeting the demands of these target market sectors that the phenomenon of the Yoga Beauty Centre developed in Vietnam, and besides the number of middle-aged yoga instructors with more experience in this field, there are also instructors under 30 who bring more diversity to the industry. Yoga instructors in Saigon are of various origins, some of them being foreigners (of which the majority are from yoga’s country of origin – India), and the rest are locals who have practiced yoga for a very long time and discovered the passion to develop it here in their hometown. So far, there’s no consensus on which teachers are Saigon’s most prominent yoga figures, as it seems most local people pay less attention to individual instructors and more on the fame and reputation of the centres themselves – as well as keeping a careful eye on fees.

  • Relieve the tension for baby’s sake.

    Therapeutic massage for pregnant women has gradually become more popular and in significantly higher demand over the last few years in Vietnam than it was previously. Once scientific research actually established that massage for pregnant women was a really good idea, the number of women interested in the service began to climb in the hope that undergoing regular massage would bring on distinct benefits during labour. Despite this huge demand, however, therapeutic massage services for pregnant women are not widely provided in HCMC, since the requirements for offering these massages are quite strict. A therapeutic masseur has to have completed a specialised qualification and be very experienced at this job. Oftentimes, Vietnamese pregnant women get leads on viable services from Ob/Gyn doctors or nurses at the hospitals they visit; otherwise, they will gather their information via word of mouth. Pregnancy masseuses need to know what they’re doing If you ever come into contact with someone who can offer this kind of service, be sure to ask for evidence of their qualification and working experience. When applied properly, the best effect that massage can have in expecting women is a reduction of the hormones causing stress during pregnancy. During a massage, pregnant women should feel totally relaxed and comfortable, which can also help them to gain more energy and have a better sleep. To a number of pregnant women, massage also helps to reduce morning sickness and heartburn. Each kind of massage has its own effect – for example, body massage will help reduce pain in the neck, back, pelvis, legs, as well as swelling in the ankles and feet. As massage works to relax the muscles, it can reduce joint pain as a result. It is thought that frequent massages can improve the health for both mother and baby, helping

  • Kicking and screaming.

    Among children the world over, the dentist’s office may well be the most loathed place on the face of the planet. But even though some parents have to literally drag their young ones to the dentist’s chair while they’re kicking and screaming, it doesn’t have to be that way. Here in HCMC, there is a fast-growing niche of child-friendly dental clinics that make regular check-ups and routine procedures a tearless affair. One question that parents often ask is when you should start taking your kids to the dentist. In general, there is little need to do so during the first few years of life as long as the kids are shown the correct way to brush their first teeth; at this point, the important thing is to instil good oral hygiene habits for the years to follow. Still, it’s a good idea to bring your children to the dentist soon after they have a complete set of first teeth. Prevention is always less painful and cheaper than treatment, and starting to see the dentist at an early age is a good way of familiarising the child with the habit of regular check-ups. In HCMC, a number of dental clinics focus on accommodating the needs of young patients. Aside from regular check-ups and routine procedures such as dental fillings and sealants, paediatric dentists provide child-specific services such as space maintainers to ensure that permanent teeth will grow properly. Cosmetic dentistry, especially tooth alignment, is also popular since children can get that perfect smile in a fraction of the time required for adults. Compared to most Western countries, visiting a dentist in Vietnam is a thrifty affair: a check-up with cleaning is around VND150,000, while a filling is rarely over VND200,000. Braces are also much cheaper, with conventional sets starting at VND15m and invisalign priced at around VND60m. As is usually the case with health services, the exact price will depend on the dental clinic, with those catering to foreigners typically demanding a premium. Shop around and find a clinic suitable for your budget from one of the following reputable practices:

  • Are you legal on the road in Ho Chi Minh City?

    One of the most commonly-asked expat-related questions in Ho Chi Minh City and the source of many expat myths, the subject of how to become licensed to drive in this town causes no end of frustration amongst foreigners, so much so that the majority allegedly ignore the problem altogether and drive without doing any paperwork at all. This is unnecessary – there are clear answers to the question, and relatively clear procedures in resolving your licensing issues for good so that you never have to worry about the attention of traffic police again. The simple answer is no: an international or foreign driving license, in general, has no legal weight in Vietnam and is not equivalent to a local driving license in Vietnam. To drive here, you must have a locally-issued license. This leads many to conclude that they’ll be ineligible, because the language barrier prevents them from sitting a theory examination – but this is not the case. All you need to do is go through the process of applying for a local license based on the strength of your international one, and you’re done. Hit the road and drive easy. Street legal in HCMC Foreigners who meet certain criteria can use their international or foreign driver’s license to obtain a Vietnamese one. Those criteria are:       Foreigners who reside, work and study in Vietnam for a period of 3 months or more. Long-term foreign travelers (exactly what constitutes “long term” is not specified).       This covers almost everyone staying here long enough to want a license in the first place. Theoretically, the total process of license conversion takes about 10 working days at a cost of VND30,000. In HCMC, the authority in charge of this issue is the Ho Chi Minh City Department of

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