This article is an experience feedback of a foreign trainee in Vietnam to help students, maybe future trainees in the tourism industry in Vietnam. The country became a real paradise for students who want to immerse themselves in the Asian work market, get experience and be employable just after a bachelor or master degree. Today, many freshly graduated choose to continue their adventure in Asia and search for a job in the big cities such as Bangkok, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Beijing, Shanghai, etc…
Can you introduce yourself?
Hello, I’m Baptiste Hasley, 25 and French. In France, I’m studying in Master degree in La Rochelle Business School. Actually, I’m working for my GAP year internship at Amasia Travel, a travel agency in Hanoi (Vietnam), since early January 2017.
Why this internship on the other side of the world?
For my studies, I needed an internship abroad. I had experience in the marketing sector during my former internships, that’s why I choose to search for an internship in this sector. To see something different, I decide to go into a new industry, unknown to me. The tourism industry is a great way to combine travel and work, even better in a country I don’t know to discover everything about this world region, to get out of my French comfort and to meet new people. Having always wanted to travel to Asia, I thought it was a good moment to leave.
When I was looking for an internship, I saw the internship offer of Amasia Travel on an international job-seeking site published by Camille Bignan, Marketing and Communication Manager of the agency. By contacting her, I discovered the company, its values and principles and its very responsible tourism side. I immediately jumped on the opportunity to submit my application because I share this corporate culture.
Can you explain your feeling about Vietnam and this Internship?
Amazing! I came to Vietnam knowing that culture was incredibly different from French culture. I knew that I would have to adapt and not impose my European culture.
To be honest, the first days were complicated. I started to ask myself if I made a good choice to come here! Days passed and this fear quickly disappeared. I felt accepted and I wanted to discover more about this country full of stories, beautiful landscapes and cultures without forgetting to taste the culinary specialities of the country so delicious. Finally, I love this country for its qualities and its faults because it’s so good to live there.
About my internship, I was welcomed by Camille upon my arrival at the airport and throughout the duration of my internship, I learned a lot of things thanks to her experience and her incredible love of Vietnam, more precisely for the North of Vietnam. Then, first contact with the team I would say, warm is the word that characterizes the team. I share some good moments with them, about their country, their regions, their traditional dishes that I like to discover but also about their tradition.
In conclusion, it was much more than an internship, it was a meeting, a sharing, a story finally a friendship.
Phot credit: Baptiste Hasley
What are your most unforgettable memories?
My first memory would be on my arrival in Vietnam. I was thinking that the Vietnamese were very welcoming by their smile and finally I was surprised. Hanoi is a capital with its lifestyle. Vietnamese will not give you a warm welcome as you can see in movies. But now, I finally discovered the Vietnamese smiles, the smile of locals very glad to see how I integrate myself into their culture and daily life. Just a few words in Vietnamese, while ordering a speciality on a street food corner and you discover the amazing sympathy of these people.
My second unusual memory would be, my travels through Vietnam, I had the chance to discover the beautiful North area, from the famous Halong Bay to Mai Chau while passing by Sapa. These getaways were memorable and will last in my mind all my life long.
What will you miss when back to France?
Vietnamese food! I will try to learn how to cook Vietnamese specialities when I will return to France but I don’t think I will be able to find the same flavours, so delicious.
What are your tips for students looking for training in Vietnam?
Enjoy this adventure! Vietnam is a country that will not leave you unmoved, I’m sure of that. Stay yourself, be open to others, overcome the fears you may have the first few days and you will not be disappointed by your trip.
Another tip would be to choose a travel agency because you can live a unique experience by learning about destinations in Southeast Asia with passionate local experts who know every single detail of destinations.
A word for the end?
Thank you so much to Amasia Travel, Mr. Thang, Camille and all team members for this unique, rewarding and unforgettable experience (Huyen Luong, Ngoc, Phuong, Hien et Huyen) and see you soon!