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I. Trade

1.1. The period before the 20th century.

Before the 20th century, Dalat city and the area of Lac Duong town nowadays were the mainly resident area of the Lach people on the Lang Biang plateau. Different from some other ethnic groups on this highland, the Lach people knew how to plant the wet rice and do business, at first it was just used to assist their family expenditure due to the income from agricultural products, but enough dissatisfaction, gradually becoming the sole profession for the peoples such as Chil, Sre or Mnong,… on the Lang Biang plateau and neighboring regions.

When Kingdom of Champa was broken up, Lach people’s business gradually moved down the East of the areas such as Dran (Lam Dong), Phan Rang (Ninh Thuan) or Nha Trang (Khanh Hoa); they also enlarged to the West-North as far as Cambodia. Kinds of goods from the plain which were moved up the upper land are salt and irons, they exchanged rice, cotton, productive tools, gong, jar… with the inhabitant of other ethnic minorities on the highland.

They often used buffalo to value in the process of exchanging goods. For example, in the area of Chil people, one buffalo exchanged 30 pieces of iron or one small bowl of salt which was equivalent to a papoose of rice (about 40kg),…

In the process of commercial exchanges, the Lach people accumulated rather much experience and created the close-knit relation between the seller and the buyer or to the contrary, they knew to keep their faithfulness in the selling and buying relation. Therefore, besides knowing the wet rice cultivation, trading also became the Lach people’s culture on the highland. For instance, they sold the familiar customer with owing, used intermediary and paid enough for them even when being lost.

Commercial service between the Kinh people and the native or between the native peoples each other was still in the form of exchanging goods with the mode of “things of equal value”. Service activities between the peoples on the Lang Biang plateau in this period weren’t considerable about the quantity and value of goods. The process of exchanges between the ethnic peoples of the upper land and the plain formed the careers which have specialization between the ethnic peoples on the Lang Biang plateau. For example, forging iron tools of the Chil reached a rather sophisticated level or trading was considered a sole profession of the Lach…

1.2. The early 20th century period to 1945

1.2.1. The pre-1916 period

After Governor-general of Paul Doumer made a decision to choose Da Lat to be the vacation resort, the French and European began to go to Da Lat.

In 1907, Da Lat had about 60-80 Kinh people to settle, most of them were the people who were a trader from afar. They started from Phan Rang or Phan Thiet moved up the highland; with loads of goods, they passed the villages which were full of unhealthy climate, the wild places of miasmal greenwood and had malaria.

In 1914, when the World War I broke out, at the same time stretch of road from Djiring to Da Lat was gone through, wave of European in Indochina came to Da Lat more and more crowded, it led to the supply of essential foods and services to meet the life need of these people on the Lang Biang plateau.

After a rather long time being fallen in oblivion, in November 1915, Governor-general of Roume woke up Da Lat with deciding to set up the township of the second order directly under the central government in Indochina. On April 20th, 1916, King Duy Tan Regent Council announced the edict to found Da Lat city. Investing in Da Lat was more and more increasing, from that it brought about a lot of other services were also formed more and more developing.

1.2.2. The 1916-1945 period

The commercial services of this period primarily belonged to Vietnamese, Frenchmen abroad and Chinese resident. The trading trips of the Lach to the plain area or to Cambodia gradually began decreasing and ending in the late 20th decade years of the previous century.

By this time, to satisfy the needs of building materials, there are 12.700 ton materials, including tins, cement, water pipes, machines which were taken from Saigon. In 1936, there were 8.800 ton materials, including many kinds transported to Dalat.

Transport by Da Lat - Thap Cham railway with the price was in moderation (20 dong/ton = 2 penny/kg). In 1937, income of the stations approximately increased 50% on last year (90.000 dong in 1936 and 133.000 dong in 1937) and the ticket fare difference on each line for the orders was very big, especially between the ticket fare of the highest order and the one of the fourth order was about 10 times.

In the pre- World War II period (1939-1945), Da Lat was focused on the investment to develop some more technical infrastructure projects and houses; buying and selling land to build the villas was very eventful.

1.3. The 1945-1954 period

In the 1952s and 1953s, yearly Da Lat sold out the provinces 6.000 tons of cabbage, 6.000 tons of fir, 200 tons of Cao lanh, 216 tons of tea and 15 tons of dry skin. At the same time, to meet the need of consumer, monthly Da Lat had to import from the plain provinces and Saigon, Big Market some necessities such as:

- Food: South Vietnam rice (350 tons), dried fish, fresh fish (mixed with ice-water), steamed fish (556 tons), the fish sauce of the central coastal provinces, primarily Phan Thiet (51 tons), salt (128 tons), porker (more 100 ones), beef (50 ones), duck egg (4 tons), fowl (500 baskets), kinds of fruit (19 tons), soft drink and beer, wine (700 kegs + 8 wooden barrels + 4,5 tons),…

- Building materials: cement (100 tons), brick (83 tons), lime (7 tons),…

- Fuel and combustible: petrol (133 casks: 130 tons), Diesel oil (66 casks: 11,6 tons), Gasoil oil (190 casks: 1,5 tons), paraffin (44 casks: 2 tons).

- Kinds of chemical, metal, drug, dry food: 355 tons.

By this time the activities of commercial service, industry or agriculture in Da Lat consisted of the following typical basis:

- Company of exterminating termite;

- Highland vegetable & flower Co-operative;

- Highland Forest Product & Industry Company;

- Da Lat Building Company;

- Poinsard & Veyret anonymous Company (Vien Dong Branch);

- Dong Duong Forest Product & Match Company;

- Dong Duong Cinema Company;

- Saigon Supplies Company (COSARA);

- Dong Duong Water & Electricity Company;

- Vietnam Airlines;

- Transport Trade Union.

1.4. The 1954-1975 period

On Mar 11th, 1955, The Prime Minister, Mr. Ngo Dinh Diem promulgated the 21st edict of abolishing the regime of territorial Reigning king’s court, Da Lat directly under the central government in Saigon. In the period, the services of holiday tourism, commerce in the Da Lat market were rather crowded and mainly concentrated in the central of Da Lat and several populated places in the suburb (Chi Lang, Trai Mat, Tram Bo, Cau Dat,…).

In Summer of Dinh Dau year, Lam Vien Festival was hold at Doan Thi Diem school and on the hilly zone between Truong Vinh Ky street (nowadays Phan Nhu Thach and Nam Ky Khoi Nghia street) and Thu Khoa Huan. The fair opened on Feb 15th, 1957 with the participation of Ngo Dinh Diem president.

This is an Exhibit Fair which was organized rather large-scale, with many pavilions to show the activity of organizations, private individuals in Da Lat and the Central Part Plateau; the ministries and companies in Saigon introduced to the products of domestic production. The Da Lat New Market model, the Da Nhim hydroelectric system, the Central Part plateau irrigation and forestry branch’s butterfly collection, “Phong Lan Dinh” pavilion with many varieties of endemic flower upon the Lang Biang and Central Part plateau attracted the participators’ special attention.

The export activities of Da Lat vegetable to some South-East Asian Nations began in 1958, primarily to Singapore Market.

In 1962, Da Lat vegetable was exported to the markets of Indonesia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, but the inconsiderable output.

- Besides the supply for the needs in local, Da Lat vegetable and flower were primarily provided for Saigon, Gia Dinh, some provinces in the East and West-South Vietnam; the central coast such as Phan Rang, Phan Thiet, Nha Trang, Tuy Hoa, Quy Nhon, Quang Ngai, Da Nang, Hue,…

From 1969 to pre-1975, American goods are flooding the market which influenced rather strongly on the local production and market. The large business activity system by this time primarily concentrated on the owners who were Chinese or a few of the Kinh who closely related to commanders, officers or influential office-holders of the former authority. Consequently, the traffic of goods had difficulty, led to the situation of the strong development of speculation, raising selling price of goods, together with more and more increasing kinds of tax and debased currency; which affected very much the life of Da Lat inhabitant as well as salaried people or students who went to Da Lat to work or study.

At the time, apart from the products of vegetable and flower, the Da Lat market mainly consumed the imported goods from other places. Among them were the necessary commodities such as rice, meat fish, the processed foods, fertilizer, pesticide and kinds of other industrial products.

Before 1975, except a few of grocery doing business concentrated in the central city (Hoa Binh, Minh Mang, Duy Tan, and Phan Dinh Phung zone) and several areas which gathered the population of environs were professional, the majority of grocery operation was sparsely put in the dispersive residential quarter.

1.5. The after-1975 period.

From 1975 to the early 1986, the local economy together with the whole country was managed on the mechanism of planning concentration, budget subsidies. The activities of generally speaking service and private speaking commerce were considered the physical non-production branch, so they weren’t pay attention to investment and development.

Since 1976, Da Lat carried out the system of issuing the consuming articles and essential foods on ration ticket and handing over the products for the agencies, units which were concerned with the provincial level. The province balanced all materials, goods to serve the production and consumption of the local people.

The relationship between service and commerce in social life was primarily the exhibit relation. The state trading services, marketing cooperation played the mainly controlling role of the activities in the market. Individual or private trade was limited in many fields; even some fields couldn’t have the participation of individual or private trade (such as: the trade of foods, fuel, raw materials to serve the production and building…).

The “forbid, not allow” situation, the establishment of many check-points led to paying a salary or wage which didn’t base on the fruit of their labour, but had the level character. The activity of production as well as commerce, service was managed on “begging and giving mechanism” or “purchasing” which strangled the creative labor and didn’t promote the local economic potential. In the market, the scarce goods, the increasing prices, the debased currency with the high rate, the separated market due to the managers’ subjective ideas and the state trading service system. Consequently, cabbages, fruits and other products of Da Lat weren’t freely transported to other provinces to consume and on the contrary. Until 1979, the supply with foods for people and the official worker staff was sold on ration ticket, monthly each mouth was bought several kg of rice and the remaining more 10 kg Bo bo, dry cassava or wheat flour. About food, people were provided through the trading store system of government or consuming co-operatives, but it’s very scarce and primarily just had a few of the essential food products. This situation lasted until the end of 1985; the activity of service, commerce and production in the whole area was in the exhausted condition of capital, productive capacity reduced considerably because the main reason was the only use of the manual labor force and shortage of the essential materials.

To overcome the situation, in 1985 Government’s the “price – salary – money” solution was promulgated. However, just after a short time, it expressed many weaknesses, inadequatenesses because it didn’t create the motive power to promote the production as well as the goods to meet the need of market; not only didn’t it restrain the inflation but also the inflation rate surpass three numbers.

By this time, like the common circumstance of the whole country, the production was brought to a standstill, city infrastructures was downgraded rather serious and most people just concentrated on dealing with the poverty which was lying in wait for them in daily life.

The 6th Congress of Vietnamese Communist Party (1986) marked a turning-point of our country to step over the innovational period; to abolish the mechanism of planning and managing concentration, budget subsidies; to develop our country’s economy on the mechanism of market with many compositions. The productive and business activities developed; the commodities in the market were more and more abundant and diversified; the prices of consumer products and foods were more and more stable.

Thanks to the policy innovation of Party and Government, the Vietnamese economy continuously grew, the political situation was stable, people’s life improved, the demands of holiday tourism of people all over the country were more and more increasing. To satisfy the need of market, the pleasure-house, guest-house service and some services of the noticeable development assistance in the stage of the urbanizational process in Da Lat, especially the areas of the central city happened quickly.

The renovation time created conditions for the development of Da Lat vegetables and flowers with many species, the diversity and the rather good quality which satisfied the consuming demand. Since 1995, Da Lat cabbages were exported to the countries in the area such as: Singapore, Hong Kong, Dai Loan, Japan,…However, the exported amount just made up approximate 10% of the total output because there weren’t the positive measures to solve the stability of export market yet.

At the same time, a rather actively intermediary class was formed and played a role of consuming the vegetable and flower product through the form that was buying the goods of the producer directly and resupplying the traders in other domestic markets (sometimes also being a service for supplying the export activity) or the owner of a passenger car from the provinces to Da Lat bought vegetables and flowers.

In recent years, together with the general trend of the world and countries in the area about food safety hygiene, protecting the consumer’s health, kinds of the Da Lat vegetable and flower product had the high quality, fulfilled requirements about food hygiene according to general regulations of the world. Thanks to that, opening up a new future for Da Lat about the market of consuming the cleanly – safely agricultural product in the traditional markets; and becoming more and more wide-open.

1.5.1. The state trading system in city level.

The state trading company within the Da Lat city directly managed, including: Drug Company in third level, Agricultural Material Station, the Da Lat export- import Business Production Company, the city Trade-Service Company.

Drug Company in third level

Da Lat drugstore was founded in 1976; it was the state economic unit which specialized in doing business the home-made and imported Western and Eastern medicine products, the basic health material equipments. At first, the distributive system of Da Lat Drugstore consisted of 20 retail stores directly under put in the central city and the concentration zones of population in commune and quarter. Till 1981, Drug Company in third level of city was founded on the basis of changing Da Lat Drugstore with the retail network which included 25 stores directly under the central city and the area of communes and quarters. In 1992, implementing the 388/CP decision of government about the reorganization of the state economic activities, the company was merged into Lam Dong Health Material and Drug Union Enterprise.

Agricultural Material Station

Da Lat Agricultural Material Station was founded in 1976; it was the state economic unit which specialized in doing business the agricultural materials to serve within on a scale of Da Lat city area. The main lines of business were chemical fertilizer, pesticide and some farming tools for the production such as water pump, pesticide sprayer… Until 1992, Da Lat Agricultural Material Station was merged into Agricultural Material Company of Lam Dong province.

The Da Lat export- import Business Production Company

It was founded and operated in 1978; the first time was Da Lat Arts and Crafts Station directly under Lam Dong Foreign Trade Company. In 1984, the company was changed its name to Da Lat Export Company directly under Da Lat People’s Committee.

The unit produced and did outwork the Arts and Crafts products such as sweater, woolen scarf, fine arts wood;… and purchased, processed the export farm produce such as flower, vegetable, bulb…

By this time, the main commodity was Earth-orchids which had the highest turnover; the main consuming market was the Soviets and Eastern European countries.

In 1986, Da Lat Export Company was changed the name to Da Lat Company for supplying export commodity; it didn’t directly do export service, but just provided the export products for Lam Dong Foreign Trade Company. In Oct, 1992, the unit was renamed into the Da Lat export-import Business Production Company, the transaction name was Dalexim Co., specialized in doing outwork of sweater, producing attar, subjecting kinds of the agricultural product to preliminary treatment to furnish the export articles, producing some arts and crafts commodities.

In 1991, the company carried out doing outwork the Da Lat export goods and set up two knitting factories which attracted more than 1.200 employees. The average production was from 500.000 to 600.000 products / year and its turnover achieved 3.1 million dollars. In 1998, due to the influence of the financial crisis in the area, the outwork market was narrowed, two factories just operated perfunctorily with 180 workers, turnover just remained lower than 1 million dollar. A year later, the company stopped working and carried out the steps to liquidate and dissolve.

The Da Lat Trade-Service Company

Founded on the 148/QĐ-UB decision of Da Lat People’s Committee on Sept 19th, 1989, the unit had the following duties:

- Organizing to exploit, process business the speciality agricultural and silvicultural commodities and other articles provided the domestic consumption and export;

- Organizing to invest and develop the export-import services, other services to serve the life and consumption requirements;

- Organizing the production activities, processing the raw materials, other commodities in local;

- Opening the stores to introduce designs and consume the product through the forms of business and retail…;

- Implementing the self-controlling right in the production, business followed the 271/HĐBT decision which council of ministers stipulated; simultaneously, carrying out the national duties well.

1.5.2. The non-state trading units

Da Lat Business Co-operative Union

Founded on the 229/QĐ-TC-UB of Lam Dong People’s Committee on July, 20th, 1979, City Business Co-operative Union (CBCU) was a unit which managed the enterprise of non-state trading services directly under Da Lat People’s Committee. DBCU was under the leadership, administration, management of City People’s Committee, at the same time it was under the supply of concrete guidance in professional knowledge of Lam Dong Trade Company in activities.

In 1982, CBCU had 9 consumption cooperatives directly under 6 quarters and 3 communes with 152 members (it was also the time when there was the highest number of members of the co-operative), the main business goods was food and some consuming products, the total turnover achieved 39.800.000 Dong. In 1986, in the area of city just remained City Business Co-operative and the consumption co-operatives in quarter 1, 6 and 9; other co-operatives itself dissolved or just survived in the form of the name and up to now the only remaining City Business Co-operative still ran.

1.5.3. The activity of private individual business

In the innovating period, the trading activity in the area of city was more and more development both of the wholesale trade, agency and retail. However, the number of laborers which directly took part in these activities was inconsiderable compared to the number of household with registration for business.

Speciality Business in Da L at Market

The business professions primarily concentrated in the areas of the central city; especially for the fields of commerce, hotel, restaurant business and services.

On Dec 31st, 2003, the whole area has about 467 businesses, among them have about 60 ones which were operating and producing business, not including the individual businesses ran and registered on the 66/CP edict (Being of small business) and co-operative.

According to the inquiry result, 407 companies in the city area accounted for 52.24% of the total ones in the whole province, among them were the commerce-service sector which mustered the most crowded with 326 companies, accounted for 80,09%. The commercial business activity has 65 companies, hotel-restaurant business has 208 ones, and other services have 53 ones.

According to the survey figures about the situation of producing and consuming vegetable and flower at Da Lat in Oct, 2000, Da Lat had 150 households of purchasing the vegetable product; among them had about 20 households which had a great and focusing capital. Besides the activities of supplying for materials to serve the production, this intermediate staff played a rather positive role of farmers’ consuming vegetable and flower in the area of Da Lat city; it fixedly contributed to stabilizing the laborers’ life in agricultural cultivation.

1.5.4. Some markets in Da Lat.

In the process of Da Lat’s the urban formation and development, together wave of immigrants in each time, formed some markets at the residential quarters in the central area as well as some suburbs, environs. For example, Da Lat market, Cau Dat Market or Chi Lang market, Tram Bo market were built in the late 1930s; the markets such as Trai Mat, Cay so 4, (in the area of La Son Phu Tu street), Thai Phien, Nam Thien, Thien Thanh…were built after the 1950s; or Vegetable market, Night market…have just been built in the years at the end decade of the last century.

Da Lat Market

In 1929, a wooden market, metal roofing was built in the position which was Hoa Binh zone nowadays (thus its name was Cay Market) to replace the area of holding a market on the space of vacant land in the area of Anh Sang hamlet. In 1937, Cay market was burned; the contemporary authorities let the market be rebuilt at the previous places with materials such as brick, cement. In 1939, Da Lat market was inaugurated; considered as the one-time symbol of Da Lat before Da Lat New market was built near 20 years later.

Cho Troi on Phan Boi Chau street (1955)

In 1958, the former authorities allowed conducting the renovation of the central commercial quarter of city, building a new market quarter with two floors and a terrace at the marshy area in the East of the old market. In 1960, Building the market was completed and entered to use with the name of Cho Moi Da Lat. In 1993, Cho Moi Da Lat was cooperated and given the investment capital by Viet Hoa Bank of Ho Chi Minh city to upgrade, innovate; and in 1995, it was completed and entered to use like today, at that time the market’s name was Cho Da Lat.

Cho Da Lat (2007)

Cau Dat Market

After the Kinh’s village in Xuan Truong was founded, the economic life developed, so in 1931 the inhabitants here and some chineses went to Cau Dat to open up a market, to exchange and do business kinds of the goods which the inhabitants in the area produced and kinds of the food, commodity, foodstuff were brought up from the coastal area or the Southern plain to here. At first, it was just a temporary market until 1967 Cau Dat market was delineated and built with semi-solid materials in the new area nowadays, there was 440 square meters. After 1975, Government invested and the market was strongly built and ran under the direct management of Xuan Truong commune People’s Committee. In 1995, implementing government’s the 36/CP resolution of the traffic safety and order management, highway 20B (before 1975 it was highway 11) across this town was enlarged, part of the market’s square along the highway’s axis was cleared away about 100 square meters and people of the area contributed 20 million VND to repair the market like nowadays. The market had a management including 5 people and about 30 households with registration for regular business. The business goods at the Cau Dat market was often just kinds of the fresh and raw food and some tools to serve housework of the local people.

Tram Bo Market

The market was founded very early, connected closely with building the railroad from Tap Champ to Da Lat in the 1920s. The stretch of the railroad from Dran to Da Lat was inaugurated, to execute the environmental protection and sanitation mission of Da Lat city’s the central area, concurrently to serve the need of the goods traffic from the coastal area to Da Lat and on the contrary, at Tram Bo there was a relative and large enough station to gather the two-way traffic goods which was primarily cattle, sawn or circular timber, some rattan bamboo, fresh fish, dried fish, fish sauce and so on products. Since it was just founded until the pre- 1967 time, the whole square of Tram Bo station area (including the market) came to more than 3 hectares. Before the day of the Southern liberation, this station was no longer used because the line of railway between Da Lat and Tap Champ no longer ran, Tram Bo market was no longer used to be a business place.

Trai Mat Market

In the early 1930s, a small group of people from Nghe Tinh, Thua Thien and Nam-Ngai-Binh-Phu to Trai Mat settled. At first, they just broke fresh ground to farm vegetable and flower which provided for the market requirements. When the inhabitants were more crowded, about 1950 the inhabitant community here contributed their wealth to build a wooden, metal roofing market on the left of highway 11, away from the Da Lat city centre about 9km. At first, the market had about 200 square meters and was built in the area more than 1000 square meters. After 1954, this market’s activities were rather crowded, the main commodity was the food articles such as meat, fresh fish, dried fish, fish sauce and cabbage, the main object of business was the local resident, Xuan Tho commune and two neighboring Sao Nam and Tay Ho hamlets.

After 1975, due to the general influence of the “forbid, not allow” policy and the concentration and budget subsidy management, the market’s activity started withering, the business output was inconsiderable. Entering the innovation period till now, the local economic activities were rather than the previous period; it arose the business demand of food and some articles to serve the daily life’s the need of the inhabitants in the area more and more increasing. The market gradually ran back, but at that time buyer and seller didn’t concentrate in the old market, but opened up a market along the pavement of highway in front of the residential area and vacant ground, formerly the train station. Implementing the urban renovation and restored the line of railway between Da Lat and Trai Mat, in 1998, according to the suggestion of the local authority and people, Da Lat city People’s Committee agreed to design and build the new market on the ground where before 1975 was a police station on the left of the highway, away from the old market about 200m. The new market was built rather strongly and more spaciously with area under the use 520 square meters.

Vegetable Market

After the day of national liberation to 1985, Vegetable market was formed due to the spontaneously unfixed muster along Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street, Ba Trieu bridge, the top of street into Anh Sang hamlet, Tung Nghia coach station or the top area of Ba Huyen Thanh Quan street (near Doi Co lake)… The market just ran at night until before the sunrise.

The operation of Vegetable market by this time, besides the problems of causing the environmental hygiene pollution, it influenced on the urban good-looking problem in the area of holding a market, thus until the beginning of 1986, the municipal authorities delineated a temporary vegetable market on the top of Pham Ngu Lao street (bordering Le Dai Hanh) with 32 vegetable granaries, each one often had 9 square meters and was made of soft material due to the owner of granary oneself provided capital to build. They directly bought vegetable and cabbage from the home vegetable garden in the wards or communes, classified and transported to the places.

Until 1988, to ensure the environmental hygiene and scenery of the city’s the central area; Vegetable market was moved to the area of Dang Thai Than Street. The area to make a market this time was delineated on about more than 2000 square meters with 68 stalls which had the average square about 24 square meters/stall and were made of semi-solid material.

In 1998, Vegetable market was moved again to the area of To Thien Thanh Street. It was built in the 5.500 square meter area, at first there were 85 vegetable granaries, later there were more than 90 ones.

In 2004, Vegetable market was moved to highway 20 on the street from Da Lat to Trai Mat.

Night Market

At first, Night market was unpromptedly founded to supply for the popular eating and drinking need of the vegetable business people. Later, in the innovation period, the economy operated on the market economy mechanism, the amount of tourists to Da Lat was more and more increasing. Night market changed to serving the eating and drinking need of tourists and travelers. Before 1995, Night market’s activities weren’t fixed, the place of assembly for business by this time was the area in front of La Tulipe Restaurant, three-step staircase from Da Lat market to Le Dai Hanh street (beside Hai Son hotel) or in the traffic-circle area on the verge of Xuan Huong lake, the top of Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street.

Up to August, 1995, City People’s Committee delineated Night market at the nonresident coach station beside Hai Son hotel. The market had from 16 to 21 the business households, the shops and inns were bought under parachute canopies in the about 1000 square meters area. Since it was founded, Night market just ran from 7:00 p.m to before the sunrise of the next day, due to some tourists call it Am Phu market.

2. Bank

2.1. The pre-1975 period

Before 1954, the Indochinese Bank branch was established in Da Lat. Besides the Indochinese Bank branch, Vietnamese Financial Association was founded to carry out the financial assistance policy for the small plantation owners on the Lang Biang plateau. The operations of these agencies were just within the narrow scale, primarily helped the French to borrow money to develop the small and medium-sized businesses and farms…

From 1955 to 1966, in the South Vietnam, the responsible agencies of the Central authority consisted of Democratic Agricultural Credit, Nha Quoc gia Credit, Quoc gia Nong Tin Cuoc, Phu Tong uy Hop Tac xa and Nong Tin, Extending Industry Center.

To meet the need of the development in conformity with the fact, in 1967 Quoc gia Nong Tin Cuoc organization was abrogated and set up Agricultural Development Bank; in 1971, Trung tam Khuyech truong Ky nghe was also abrogated and replaced by Vietnamese Industrial Development Bank.

The Agricultural Development Bank branch operated in the Da Lat – Tuyen Duc area at the number 1, Ham Nghi Street (Nowadays was Nguyen Van Troi Street), and its function was to lend farmer and co-operative to mechanize the means of production, to buy fertilizer, pesticide, seed and the reproductive investment.

From 1971 to 1975, there were some more branches of the commercial banks such as the South Vietnam Bank branch, the Industrial Development Bank branch, the Investment and Development Bank branch, the Nam Do Bank branch, the Tin Nghia Bank branch, Viet Nam Commercial Credit and Extending Export Center branch.

The operation of the above bank branch was divided into two main forms:

-Supplying the short-term or extraordinary loans (like the South Vietnam Bank branch);

-Supplying the medium-term and long-term credit (from 2 to 10 years) and giving priority to the industry development or the new investment projects or expanding the production enterprise (such as the Industrial Development Bank branch, the Investment and Development Bank branch);

-Providing the credit with the purpose to assist the activity of the export goods in local.

However, the conditions to borrow with interest at this bank branch were relatively difficult; it required that the borrower had to have the reliable property or the investment projects had to be highly feasible. In case of the need to borrow the amount of money larger than the prescribed level, the competence of solving belonged to the central bank’s the managing director in Saigon who considered and approved. Therefore, by this time the credits for disbursement was inconsiderable and the purpose of the assistance programs for extending the business production which didn’t achieve the desired result.

2.2. The period from 1975 up to now.

In the period from 1975 to 1985, the economy operated on the mechanism of planning and managing concentration, budget subsidies. The bank system of this period was the form of one level. The state bank assumed the function of the commercial bank; the lending operation restrained very much, primarily solved for the state economic sector and received people’s the savings through the operation of the Socialist Saving Fund system.

Beginning the renovation period from 1986 up to now, the State Bank had the branch in provinces, the State Bank branch of Lam Dong province had the headquarters at 42 Ho Tung Mau Street to carry out the function of the state management in the fields of currency and credit. Simultaneously, to create conditions for the multi-component economy operated on the market mechanism, by this time the commercial bank system was gradually formed, there were the branches in the local. The Agriculture and Rural Development Bank ran according to three levels from the Central to the District. In Da Lat, the Industry and Trade Bank branch solved for students of universities who were borrowed from 2 to 3 million VND with interest from 0.15% to 0.20%/month to expend studying; and the borrowing term often belonged to the studying time of students.

From 2000 up to now, implementing the hunger eradication and poverty reduction policy all over the country in the new situation, the bank system for the poor - the Social Policy Bank was founded. The operation and organization mechanism of this bank was similar to the Agriculture and Rural Development Bank. However, besides the client objects like other banks, the Social Policy Bank primarily solved for lending the officer, staff member, worker, official to improve the condition of family life or the production to do auxiliary farm; and for the poor households (they were issued the register of poor household). The requirement for the foregoing objects to be borrowed was often in the form of mortgage credit and the amount of borrowed money was also limited from under 1 million to no more than 10 million VND.

In the renovation period, besides the credit operation of the bank system under the direct administration and management, in Da Lat, forming the system of credit funds such as the Central Credit Fund branch of the Lam Dong area, Lien Phuong Credit Fund (ward 8), Xuan Truong Credit Fund, ward 12 Credit Fund.

Besides, in the area there were also the Foreign Trade Bank branches, Viet Hoa Joint-stock Commercial Bank, Family Development Bank of Cuu Long river plain, Saigon Commercial Credit Bank...

3. Transport

3.1 Road Transport

In 1994, the road from Ma Lam to Dịing was finished, and the first motor went from Phan Thiet to Da Lạt on one day. This was both a record time and the significant event for development of the Lam Vien Plateau in the future.

In 1932, the road from Saigon to Da Lat was finished and the traffic was very good. It just took six hours for passengers to go on this road by motor.

Before 1975, road transport from Da Lat to Saigon and to Phan Rang were implemented by Minh Trung and Thuan Duc company, they used types of car of Peugeot( France), Ford, Chevrolet( America), Toyota( Japan),...

Means of transportation in city:

- Renault car from Hoa Binh to Chi Lang area

- Lambretta three wheels from market to many places in the city. The price for one time was from 15 dong to 20 dong/person, if supplying whole car, the price was 50 dong/person. The Lambretta part in central of city located in Phan Boi Chau - Hoa Binh street corner, in front of Agricultural Development Bank in Ham Nghi street( Nguyen Van Troi street), in Minh Mang-Tang Bat Ho street corner( Truong Cong Dinh street), near Thuy Tien hotel in Duy Tan - Truong Vinh Ky street corner( 3/2-Nam Ky Khoi Nghia), near Da Lat-Sai gon bus station, Da Lat-Nha Trang one( urban bus station), and in Nha Chung street( near du Parc hotel).

- Taxi: Passengers used white and black Peugeot 203. The price for short road section was about 100 dong, for long one was 150 dong. That time, taxi parked in station which was in front of number one and number 40 Hoa Binh area, in front of Mong Dep Cho Da Lat hotel (La Tulipe).

After 1975, subsidy period, difficult economy, the number of transportations was not much, petrol was deficient; therefore, transport was limited.

In innovative period, road transportation volume about good and people had increasing tendency. Total transport business facilities of Da Lat were collected statistic at the end of 1998 were 1.952, there were 496 cars (2.271 dead weight-tons) to transport goods, and 1.456 cars( 19.478 seats) to transport people.

The transport business cars mainly belonged to non state-owned economic sectors with 90%, among them co-operative made up 60%. Da Lat had 8 transport co-operatives and 2 taxi companies with 20 cars 4 seats and 12 seats.

In 2003, Ad lat has 533 trucks and 1689 the vehicles of transporting passenger which consist of 251 passenger cars, 189 the cars of 5- 14 seats, 29 three-wheeled taxis, 1200 passenger two-wheelers and 20 delivery tricycles.

In reality, the number of the transports of Da lat origin against statistics because some of the owner of transport register in other provinces however they still join transportation business at Da lat.

Commodities transportation

Commodities primarily transported from Da lat to Ho Chi Minh City, the provinces of Eastern, Southwest, Central park.… include the products of traditional agriculture and silvicultue such as vegetable, flower and forest product.

Commodities transported to Da lat primarily from Ho Chi Minh City involve food, technological product, household appliances product, building materials, fertilizer, pesticide, ect. The commodities from Coastal provinces include seafood (shrimp, fish), fruit (grape, dragon), agricultural product…; entrepôt goods through Cam Ranh harbor, Thap Cham station consist of cement, fertilizer, coal...

Passenger’s transportation

In 1998, the passenger’s transportation routes of Da lat involved 24 interprovincial routes, 16 internal province routes, 3 internal town routes:

- 24 passenger’s transportation routes connected Da lat with the provinces, cities in country. The route which had the furthest length was Da lat- Cao Bang, distance of over 1800km, with the number of passengers about 3.000 people per year. The route of the most passengers was Da lat- Ho Chi Minh city, yearly the number of passengers was about 20-25 ten thousand people.

- 16 passenger’s transportation routes linked Da lat with districts, town in Lam Dong province. The shortest route was Da lat- Lac Duong with the length of 12km, the number of passengers was 5000-5500 people per year; the longest route was Da lat- Cat Tien with 200km, had 4000- 5000 passengers per year.

- 3 passengers transportation route connected the centre of Da Lat with the commune of Ta Nung, Xuan Tho and Xuan Truong.

In 1998, Da lat had two taxi activity companies with 20 taxis. In 2007, the number of the trading companies taxi transportation included: taxi co-operation, Dalattoserco, the limited liability companies such as Ba Thien, Thang Loi 1, Thang Loi 5, Kim Long, Mai Linh, Phuong Trang, and Hoang Anh Gia Lai.

The bus routes had begun to be taken shape since 2006, with the first route was from Da lat to Duc Trong. In 2007, the number of the trading companies of bus transportation consisting of 3 units was the incorporated company of Lam Dong car transportation, the limited liability companies: Thai Hoa and Phuong Trang with 79 cars, exploited the routes within the city and from Da lat to Bao Loc, Di Linh, Duc Trong, Don Phuong, Xuan Truong, Xuan Tho, Lac Duong, act.


In the area of Da Lat city, there are interprovincial and inner city stations.

Interprovincial bus station was in the end of the April 3rd Street, had an area of 17800 square meters, was built quite fully done with service establishments such as petrol station, the waiting house for passengers. On an average, the number of cars left station in 2007 was 350 per day.

Old inner city station (called Tung Nghia station) previously was based in Hoa Binh area- Phan Boi Chau, after 1975, it was moved to Le Dai Hanh street, near Ong Dao bridge, had an area about of 5000 square meters.

3.2 Railway transportation

In the early 1930s, Da lat became a famous holiday resort of Indochina; many passengers used railway to come to Da lat. Every trip which was an interesting excursion on the train steaming went through the landscapes of neglected nature and imposing plateau, forest and mountain. At the time, it took 48 hours to go from Ha Noi to Da Lat; therefore, tourists went to Da Lat on vacation very much.

However, the line was exploited difficultly with the density of traffic train very low, because the tonnage of train pulled by the engine on serrations with the 12 percent slope can not surpass the 65 tons of up and the 55 tons of down. The number of engines and railroad cars was still very limited, not permitted to increase more the traffic trains on the line.

Even so, in the early time, the line worked frequently and satisfied the rail transport demands of Lang Biang plateau.

At first, train transports a small number of luxurious passengers going to Da lat on holiday. However, after a few years, most of passengers were Vietnamese people who worked and lived in vegetable gardens, flower- gardens, tea plantations and the experiment camps of Pasteur institute (growing orange, Canhkina) along the railway line.

In 1937, there were two incoming and outgoing trains at Da Lat train station. The time when the line of Thap Cham- Da Lat ran was 4:14 am for the trains of F713 and 2733, 5:00 am for the 1731 train. The time when the line of Da lat- Thap Cham ran was 4:43 am for the 1732 train and 4:11 am for the trains of 2736 and F714.

Material, equipment which was transported to Da lat by railroad increased due to the building demands of city. Goods of the up direction included brick from Thap Cham and Dran; steel, cement, water pipe, equipment from Sai Gon. Da Lat also received rice, cattle and processed woodwork from plain.

Goods which was transport in the opposite direction, go down plain consisted of wood. Cau Dat’s tea, Fimnom coffee; however, the most amount of transportation was still vegetable and flower.

With the abundant conditions of climate, soil, source of irrigative water, fertilizer, Lang Biang plateau has a very large potential of producing the temperate vegetable and some kinds of fruit. No area in the South can compare with it.

Although result of the early year was still humble, amount of vegetable only supplied to 1/30 of Sai Gon and Cho Lon, the development deserved to be encouraged: the annual amount of vegetable which was outgoing transportation from 1932 to 1937 increased from 300 tons come to 1200 tons and amount of flower to be sent in1932 and 1937 also increased from 70 tons to 90 tons.

The Da Lat’s railway line has a level of average haulage very suitably with price of 20 dongs per tons of goods. The ticket price of

The ticket fare of fourth passengers was very low. The incoming level of stations in 1936 and 1937 increased 50 percent, from 90.000vnd up to 133.000vnd.

The frequent working interval of the Thap Cham- Da Lat railway line was quite short due to copulatively later wars.

From 1939, the outbreak of the Second World War led Indochina to an insecure situation and also marked the beginning of difficult phase of Da Lat railroad line. In late 1943, Ha Noi- Da Lat rail was interrupted because the bombardment of the allied airplane destroyed a lot of stretch of railroad. From 1946, the exploitation continued to be rehabilitated and remained quite frequently. The route was added four more engines to satisfy transportation demands. In 1956, there was the electrification research on this route but it was not implemented.

In the 1980s, the route was sometimes used to transport wood. From 1964 onwards, after USA committed troops massively into Vietnam, the resistance became fiercer, the route was gradually destroyed a few, the exploitation was sparser and then it was fallowed from 1972.

After the unification day of country, Da Lat railway route worked again with 7 trains from Da lat to Tan My Bridge (Ninh Son). The Thap Cham – Song Pha route was repaired at the first time in 1978 and repaired at the second times in 1985, however it could not return to work.

In 1990, the DFB SA Switzerland railroad company (Dampfbahn Furka- Bergstrecke AG- the steam train of the Furka SA mountain road route), in process of finding steam engine to restore the railroad route of Furka mountain area bought back the HG 4/4 steam engine with 40-304 and 40-308 of number sign and shifted Switzerland. After that, frame and truyen dong parts for the saw-tooth system of 40-306 engines were collected and brought back to Switzerland in 1997. To be restored and entered to use again, the above engines were the strongest steam engines of Europe at present.

In 1991, the last part of the railway route from Trai Mat to Da Lat was restored and entered to work by Vietnam’s Railway Union (it is Vietnam Railway- VNR today) to satisfy the demands of tourism.

The stretch of railroad which is exploited today is 6,55km long; although it does not compete with the transport of car, it has a lot of historical significance and reminds the existence and expectation of restoring again an original railroad route which has ever worked for last 70 years.

Today, at Da Lat station, there is a steam engine with model of 131 made by Japanese in 1936, a goods wagon of Germany was produced in 1930, a roads checking car of Russia was produced with kind of D6H and some diesel rail cars of Russia was produced with kind of D4H. Coaches use kind of passengers car coach C with the 6,55m of length. The 131 engine usually parks to show at station; pulling the touring train is the duty of D4H rail car.

The trains of tourism usually work all year round, on all days of week from 8:30 am to 18:00 pm. The number of train trips depends on the number of passengers. Daily, there are four train trips from Da Lat to Trai Mat and on the contrary. The number of passengers is about 12- 15 people per train. Passengers are many in number especially on festive season, Tet, summer vacation; at that time the number of trains increase to 6 trains per day to service the tourist sightseeing demands. In 2006, the number of passengers was 32.500 participations, among them, there are 11.000 participations of foreigner. The traveling itinerary between Da Lat and Trai Mat lasts about an hour and a half, in there time for stopping to visit Trai Mat is 40 minutes and time for running of train is about 20 minutes per direction.

3.3 Air transport

In 1930, the Air Orient of French Airlines implemented the first test flight on the Marseille- Beyrouth- Saigon airline by the Farman 190 plane. In 1931, the Airline opened the Paris- Marseille- Saigon frequent commercial air line.

Three years after, Lien Khuong airport entered to work and took shape an air traffic route linking Da lat with Saigon. At that time, air line serviced primarily for posting.

From 1951 to 1975, Air Vietnam working in the South exploited Lien Khuong aviation harbor for commercial air transport.

Due to the wars, the road traffic transports were usually interrupted, therefore the number of passengers using air line increased rabidly. Yearly, Lien Khuong airport implemented about 1.800 flights with the civilian and military purposes.

In 1971, Air Vietnam has the flights from Da Lat to Hue, Da Nang, Quy Nhon, Nha Trang, Pleiku, Kontum, Ban Me Thuot, Sai Gon, and on the contrary by the short range and narrow body airplanes such as Cessna 170, Douglas DC-3, DC-4,…

Although the quantity’s the goods and passengers transport activities of Lien Khuong airport was not larger than road transport, it had a form of modern traffic’s the outstanding advantage of being the time for transport very quickly and fewer damaging for goods. Yearly, Lien Khuong airport transported averagely about 20000 passengers, 300-400 tons of goods and 80 tons of packages.

From after April 30th, 1975 to 1980, Lien Khuong airport was taken over and managed by Vietnamese people’s Army. It served primarily the senior management who went on a mission and transported people from the North’s provinces to the area of new economy in Lam Dong.

From 1980, Lien Khuong airport was entrusted to the group’s South aviation harbor to manage and exploit commercial flights. Lien Khuong airport deployed the activities of serving passengers transport on Tan Son Nhat- Lien Khuong airline with the frequency of a flight per week by Yakolev YAK-40. However, after that, the airline ceased work temporarily due to few passengers.

In April, 1993, Vietnam Airlines was founded and was a state-owned company directly under the Vietnam civil aviation Office.

From 1992, Lien Khuong airport returned to deploy the activities of serving passengers transport, beside Tan Son Nhat- Lien Khuong airline, at this time, Lien Khuong- Phu Bai (Hue) airline and on the contrary was also opened, kind of airplanes for using was YAK-40 and then, it was replaced with ATR-72 airplane.

In May 27th, 1996, Vietnam Airline Corporation was established on a basis of merging 20 companies which Vietnam Airlines was a core.

In the period of 1994- 2003, Lien Khuong airport served 6.255 times of taking off and landing flights, 263.175 flights of coming and leaving passengers as well as transported 2.071 tons of goods, luggage and package.

From October, 2004, Lien Khuong airport opened Lien Khuong- Noi Bai (Ha Noi) and on the contrary by Fokker-70 airplane.

In 2004, Lien Khuong airport served 898 taking off and landing flights, 73.872 flights of coming and leaving passengers as well as transported 746 tons of goods, luggage, and package.

Today, Vietnam’s airline has a daily flight from Tan Son Nhat (Ho Chi Minh City) to Lien Khuong and in the opposite direction. The previous years, Lien Khuong- Noi Bai (Ha Noi) airline and on the contrary have 4 flights per week on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday by Fokker- 70 plane, up to now, there are flights regularly for everyday.

In 2006, Ministry of Communications and Transport approved to project Lien Khuong airport totally in the period 2005 and orient to 2015. According to the plan, Lien Khuong airport will be invested to build to being an airport which reaches the standard of 4D level (according to the arrangement of ICAO) and the military airport with level II, its function was the common use of military and civilian, the domestic transportation and the international flight operation.

The delineated square was 340,84hec. The total investment capital was over 1.100 billion VND, in there the period up to 2015 was 485 billion VND and the period later up to 2025 was 615 billion VND.

In recent future, Lien Khuong airport can welcome more the flight from Vietnam’s others cities such as Da Nang… It was upgraded according to the international standard to serve the international flights from Russia, Georgia, Japan, Singapore and Thailand. When airport was upgraded, it will contribute to decreasing the price of airline; create conditions to export vegetable and flower of Da Lat.

4. Post Office and Telecommunication

From the early decades of the previous century, the French allowed building the post office in Da Lat to serve the purposes of communications, relaxation and travel of tourist in Da Lat. In 1915, the first post office was built in Radio Broadcast of Lam Dong province area and it was moved to a new location (16 Tran Phu Street) in 1919.

Da Lat Post Office in 1919

By this time, Da Lat post office served transferring money and mail services, it also issued corresponding. The telephone and telegraphy operation of Da Lat post office mainly based on the telephone system with magnet switchboard whose capacity was 20 numbers. In 1921, a new emission and receiver of the wave station was built on Vo Tanh Street (Bui Thi Xuan Street today) to communicate with Sai Gon and Nha Trang city.

Da Lat post office was equipped by 2 television sets, radio and print Baudot machine which was one of the progressive machines at that time.

From 1965 to 1975, the former authority set up the telephone exchange Pentaconta PC 1000 with 1000 number capacity and receiver machine Morolla and Cau Dat telecommunication station. Cau Dat telecommunication station (called intercommunication radio) was a viba wave station with troposphere diffusing method which was in the common information system connecting to global net ICS of American army. This station had the duty of long way communication for the purpose of military information; it allowed people to use some channels for long way information.

In this time, the old public authorities built a telegraphy system with quiet modern equipment such as LMT-400V and LMT-1000W on the hill near Nguyen Du semi-public High School today. This system worked by telegraphy method Morse and Télétip with a PC 610(50W) and three-phase dynamo with the ONAN mark and 10kVA capacity.

On April 19th, 1975, Dalat became an administrative agency directly under the central government and under the Zone party committe of the area VI management. The agencies of the area VI moved from Phan Thiet to DaLat. DaLat Post Office was set up for the purpose of revolution authority management and communication. In April, 1975, officers and men of T372 station took over and used Dran post office, Cau Dat (by this time, it belonged to Don Duong district) and the radio transmitter piece of city party committee took over all technology and material facilities of the information and communication system of the former authority in Da Lat.

In Jan, 1976, Da Lat became Lam Dong province’s the township; the Lam Dong province People’s Committee issued the 25/QĐ-UB Decision to merge Da Lat post office into Post office Company of Lam Dong province on Mar 8th, 1976.

Lam Dong post office took over and entered to use the whole system of post office, telephone and telegraphy of the former authority in the area. The post office system of Da Lat city was organized and reinforced; put a more post office in the Cau Dat zone. To meet the need of the information and communication for levels of authority in Da Lat, Da Lat’s the telephone and telegraphy system was invested many new devices; the operation of the whole system was the clever co-ordination between automation, semi-handicraft and handicraft. About the Post activities, Da Lat had 2 interprovincial post ways: Da Lat – Ho Chi Minh City and Da Lat – Nha Trang. The transaction counter in Da Lat, Cau Dat did the receiving and moving service of normal letter, safe letter, telegram, telephone, package, transfer of money… The means of transportation of the post service in this time was primarily by overland and in some special case, transported by the airport.

In the renovation time, since 1986, Da Lat post office was invested to strengthen the development speed of the service networks. In the late 1992, Da Lat used Digital Transmission System to serve the urban area information, introspection and interprovince understanding thoroughly. Up to July, 1994, besides remaining the operation of gentex network and télex network through electron switchboard T900, Lam Dong post office equipped a digital switchboard EWSD with 11.000 number capacities; simultaneously, entered to use the digital viba network, repeated telegraph exploitation line in Viba network and fiber optics. Since 1996, Lam Dong post office continued upgrading and expanding line of fiber optics, entered the cell phone and pager service in operation. The operation quality of Post and information communication of the post office branch was raised very many times in comparison with before. The fiber optic system from Da Lat to the districts, towns and 19 post-offices of the area in Lam Dong till now it was closed and had the total length more than 609km.

To ensure the working quality of telecommunications network to receive and issue from Da Lat to the provinces and on the contrary, Da Lat- Cau Dat microwave line was invested to build an antenna tower with a height of 100 meters by Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications at Da Lat and it was inaugurated in August 12th 1996. Lam Dong post office transported the devices of message service from Da Lat to Cau Dat microwave station and extended the scope of wave covering for provinces such as Don Duong, Duc Trong, Di Linh, Lam Ha, at the same time it undertook to cover with wave for the whole of Ninh Thuan provinces; that created advantage conditions for the Post development of the neighbor province.

From 1998, Lam Dong post office fitted up a lot of the public telephone devices in the centre or the cell phone network using card and entered Internet service to work. Up to now, besides contacting by telephone, most of the points of tourist sightseeing in Da Lat are covered cell phone’s wave.

From 2007, the center’s Da Lat city post office (near inner city bus station- on Le Dai Thanh Street) began to work. The old Da Lat post office became Tran Phu post-office being the Da Lat telecommunications centre. Da Lat also has some post-offices like Phan Dinh Phung, Phan Chu Trinh, Me Linh, Bui Thi Xuan, Da Thien, Da Thanh, and Cau Dat…directly under the Post Company of press issue.

Management agency: Center Manage electronic information, of the Department of Information and Communications
Main responsible: Mr. Nguyen Viet Van - Director of Department of Information and Communications
Address: 36 Trần Phú, Ward 4,Da Lat city
Tel: 0263.3545579 - Fax: 0263.3545455 - Email:
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