Monday, May 22, 2023

In Contrast

Eli 21.9 has traveled from Vietnam to Cambodia, and he shared two interesting things with me. First, because Vietnam is Communist, everything in Vietnam is Vietnamese, and it's quite insular. All the restaurants are local. There are no chains, at least no non-Vietnamese ones. 

In contrast, within five minutes of entering Cambodia, he saw Burger King and McDonald's and other international franchises. There are also many more international residents of Cambodia than Vietnam, for obvious reasons, giving Cambodia more of a cosmopolitan feel. 

If you're wondering how the Vietnamese people treated a goofy American, though, he said everyone was incredibly nice. There were plenty of international tourists, too, just not permanent residents.

He mentioned one other thing. Checking Yelp or Google Maps for restaurant reviews, when these apps aren't widely used in Southeast Asia, means all the restaurant reviews are basically an aggregate of what American tourists think, which can be incredibly misleading. He said all their best meals were recommended by locals at places that didn't even show up on Google Maps.  

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