I have provided information about Da Nang here.
I have also provided information on how much it would cost 2 GRANDPAckers to visit Da Nang to investigate their retirement options here.
On this page, I will focus on Da Nang as a Retirement Location.
I was on my way to Hoi An and flew into the nearest airport (Da Nang) from Nha Trang; I decided to stay in Da Nang for 4 nights to have a quick look around… I’m not in a rush…
I was expecting another Nha Trang. What I found was completely different.
Being a city, the breadth of lodgings in Da Nang is quite varied. Nearer the beach will, obviously, cost you more than away from the beach. But, there are many accommodation options that meet GRANDPAcking Standard.
BUT, I just had to include Da Nang; it deserves to be there.
Having said that, I am reasonably confident of my figures.
THE EXPAT COMMUNITY:
Da Nang has an established and growing expat community. Many reside near My Khe beach in the ‘budget’ area around where I stayed (the Hi Da Nang Beach Hostel).
But there are, no doubt, many other ‘pockets’ of expats to be found elsewhere in the city .
WHERE TO LIVE:
You can easily come to Da Nang and live in a long term, GRANDPAcking Standard hotel room at about US$400 / month (less than US$15 / day) This rate should include a simple breakfast.
For nicer, Retirement accommodation there are many areas within the city to choose from; it depends how close you want to be to a beach.
MY KHE BEACH:
This is one of the ‘budget’ beach-side areas of the city. Look in and around the Hi Da Nang Beach Hostel area.
There are a few blocks being renovated right now offering apartments for rent.
In this area, you can get a modern, 2 bedroom, furnished apartment with all utilities, cable tv, and wifi for about US$500 / month. You will pay electric on top of that rent; your electric bill will depend on how much you use your aircon. Heavy usage will cost you about US$100 / month in electric bills.
TAKE YOUR TIME:
Even in Peak Season, you can easily find a Double Room with aircon, Cable TV, and hot water ensuite in a reasonable Hostel or Guesthouse within walking distance of My Khe Beach for VDN300k-350k / night.
I would go around town and find the nicest room that I can find being quoted at VND500k / night. Once found, I would get out VDN9,000,000 in cash (about US$400), put it in front of the owner and say ‘VDN9m for one month’ (being VDN300k / night). Even better, I would get out US$400 in cash… they may be more tempted with US$s (especially when you consider that the US$ is likely to strengthen over the next few years).
This should get you a nice, clean, modern Double Room (or, possibly, a small suite with kitchenette) with hot water ensuite, nice furniture, good in-room wifi, aircon, flat screen cable tv (with English sports & movie channels), and a balcony or patio with views. You may, also, be able to get a simple breakfast and coffee included in that price (especially if you are happy to go a little bit further away from the beach).
Confronted with this option, many owners would take it. Then, you can stay there until you find the right longer term solution that you are looking for.
Sometimes you need to couple where you want to stay with a Transport option in order to make it work…
If you manage to get GRANDPAcking accommodation in or around My Khe Beach, then you will be able to get by on foot and by renting (or buying) a couple of bicycles.
You should be able to long-term-rent a bicycle for peanuts – target NO MORE THAN US$50c-75c / day. Buying could prove the better option.
Unlike in Cambodia, the police do not target foreigners on scooters. However, with the best long term scooter rental rate being about VDN80-100k / day, you may be best to just rent one at VDN100k / day as and when you need one. BUT, make sure that you have an International Driving Permit.
IS DA NANG A GRANDPACKING RETIREMENT LOCATION? YES.
IT IS STRONGLY SUGGESTED that you come and spend a few months in Vietnam BEFORE making any commitments.
For instance, the ‘rules of the road’ take a bit of getting used to.
Because of the ease of Visa renewal, Da Nang could be a long stay option for many GRANDPAckers who want to spend the summer living a beach lifestyle in a city setting.
WHAT WOULD YOUR RETIREMENT BUDGET BE?
THE GRANDPAcking ACID TEST: Can a retired couple with no assets live easily, comfortably, and happily here with their only source of income being a standard NZ Married Couple’s State Pension? YES… but you will need to ‘watch your pennies’.
If you were to retire full time on Da Nang, a realistic budget would be:
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