Passengers queue for a night water bus on the Saigon River in Ho Chi Minh City, December 10, 2021. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre
Hundreds of people in Ho Chi Minh City rejoiced in a night water bus trip on the Saigon River upon its inauguration on Friday, with all tickets snapped up in the blink of an eye.
Thuong Nhat Company, the operator of Ho Chi Minh City’s water bus route No. 1 between Bach Dang Wharf in District 1 and Linh Dong Ward in Thu Duc City, officially launched the nighttime water bus tour on Friday evening.
In the first phase, Thuong Nhat Company’s evening buses operate from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm every day.
Passengers can buy tickets at its two stations or online at the price of VND15,000 ($0.65) for a one-way ticket.
Besides peaceful, scenic night view sightseeing and music performances, the water bus route also offers snacks to passengers purchasing package tours, according to Nguyen Kim Toan, Thuong Nhat Company’s director.
The demand for the service was so strong that a slew of people started queuing at Bach Dang Wharf in District 1 as soon as 3:00 pm on Friday.
Many late queuers had to switch to booking tickets for trips on another day as all slots for the night had been sold out.
|Passengers get on a night water bus on the Saigon River in Ho Chi Minh City, December 10, 2021. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
After completing the ticket checking and health declaration procedures, passengers who were lucky enough to secure a seat on the water bus saw it slowly leaving the wharf amid brightly lit buildings.
The water bus operator treated 75 passengers on the tour with a special performance featuring Sai Gon dep lam (Beautiful Saigon), an iconic song considered a musical embodiment of Ho Chi Minh City, in the middle of the trip.
“Luckily, I managed to purchase the last four tickets for tonight’s trip,” said Tran Trieu Binh, a resident of District 1.
“As soon as we got on the bus, my two children became very excited, asking constantly about the night river view.
“In my opinion, the night bus provides a useful experience for the people and an opportunity for many generations to access the culture and history of the city, in addition to a type of multi-functional public transport to reduce traffic pressure on roads.”
|Passengers listen to a music performance on a night water bus on the Saigon River in Ho Chi Minh City, December 10, 2021. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|
|A couple takes a photo on a night water bus on the Saigon River in Ho Chi Minh City, December 10, 2021. Photo: Hoang An / Tuoi Tre|