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Saigon Registers 900 New Vehicles Everyday

In the last few months, Saigon's traffic has gone from bad to worse. These days, you might as well stay put when 5pm hits, as congestion on the city streets has become near unbearable. But while local officials acknowledge the problem – and are trying to help by trimming sidewalks and redefining the term 'traffic jam– Saigon's traffic monster continues to grow.

If the motorized chaos seems particularly out-of-control these days, that's because it is. According to Thanh Nien, statistics from the city's transport department now count around 900 new vehicles registered in Saigon everyday.

While this number alone explains a lot about local traffic, the real issue is what kind of vehicles are being registered: from the start of 2015 until now, a full 41,774 new cars have hit the streets of Saigon. So far, the city has registered an average of 139 cars per day in 2015, up 39% from last year.

While there are also 750 new two-wheeled vehicles registered daily in Saigon, the number of motorbike registrations is actually down 25% this year, hinting at a local shift toward car ownership. This move may soon be aided by an pending proposal to reduce car prices by as much as 42% by 2019, according to Thanh Nien.

Though registration prices are now climbing instead of the cost of the vehicles themselves – in September, fees hit VND11 million, five times more expensive than before – the continued onslaught of cars suggests this registration hike may not be enough to stem Saigon's deluge of four-wheeled vehicles. Taking into account the 7.2 million locally registered vehicles in Saigon, another million vehicles entering the city from other provinces and drivers like these on the road, it might just be better to stay off the streets altogether.

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