Hueber Andreas Alfred, Business student from MCI Management Center Innsbruck.

My name is Andy, and I am from Austria. My study allowed me to do a semester abroad and after lots of thinking, my choice fell on the heart of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City. Due to the severe COVID-19 situation in Vietnam in Summer 2021, it was not easy to get here but with the keen and 24/7 support of the IU, I was able to solve all the problems I had to deal with.

In September, I was finally allowed to fly to Vietnam and so I did. I cached the first flight I found, did a seven-day-quarantine in a quarantine hotel, and afterwards faced another week of home quarantine before going out to explore the streets of Ho Chi Minh City.

Being prepared to step into another week of boredom I was surprised in every way. I moved in with a lovely couple who was very accommodating and hospitable. From the first moment I met them, they helped me to find my way through the winding streets of District 2. Throughout this week of home quarantine, we had a lot of talks about cultures around the world and of course, we found a lot of habits and behaviors which differ from Austria to Vietnam.

So, if we were not busy talking about food in the different countries, we were busy cooking a lot of specialties of Vietnam like, Bánh Xèo, Bún Bò Huế or Coconut Curry with freshly made coconut milk. Therefore, I was already able to experience the tastes of Vietnam during the home quarantine. Additionally, I felt very free being here, as I could use a rooftop to exercise, read a book or just lie in the sun until it dawned behind the skyscrapers of District1.

All these experiences give me confidence, that the situation is getting better now and that the time in Vietnam will be a unique experience.