About XO Tours
We found XO Tours when we were searching for a local food tour in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam that provided opportunities for women. Their website states that “the goal of our tours is to provide a more unique and authentic look into the lives of the local people while offering our guests the safest way to experience the motorbike culture of Vietnam.”
Additionally, we were attracted to the fact that XO Tours was the first company to offer all-female guides, opening the door to more tourism jobs for women. This was a meaningful differentiator in our desire to spend our money both locally and in a way that promoted the advancement of Vietnamese women.
Finally, XO Tours provides insurance and and all of the guides are licensed, these were important selling points for us.
Which Tour to Take?
XO Tours offers tours focused on food and the sights of Ho Chi Minh City, formerly Saigon. We opted for the XO Foodie Tour, in part, because we wanted to see as much of the city as possible. Plus this food tour offered a vegetarian alternative for me which was important. Lastly, this tour was voted one of the top 10 city tours in the world and one of the top 9 in Vietnam. How could we go wrong?
We decided to upgrade to a private tour with a team that videoed the entire tour. AND we got to chose the playlist for the video. This was an irresistible option!
Because it was our first time in Ho Chi Minh City we wanted to see as many of the districts as we could; at a little north of four hours in length this tour delivered that.
Our Experience with XO Tours
XO Tours operate rain or shine and on the evening of our tour we actually had rain. Fortunately, it magically stopped just as our team arrived at the hotel. Perfection!
After a safety briefing and getting our helmets fitted, we were off. We spent the rest of the evening on the back of motorbikes zipping through Ho Chi Minh City and eating our fill of fabulous Vietnamese food. Taking it all in sitting behind an expert driver was the best way to experience the sights, sounds, tastes, and smells of the vibrant nightlife of Ho Chi Minh City. We couldn’t have loved it more!
As I’ve mentioned previously, Graeme has an adventurous palette and he enjoyed seafood, every kind of meat and fowl, and even frog legs. He savored every bite. My options were perfect for me, pho, veggies prepared all the ways, fruit, and at our final stop, dessert. I don’t have a big appetite so I paced myself and didn’t eat everywhere we stopped. In fact, if you are not a big eater or an adventurous eater it’s perfectly fine, everything about the evening was flexible.
We learned a lot about the city and its food, got to spend several hours with our drivers and the video team, explored markets, toured some neighborhoods, and at one stop we even cooked our own meal. We enjoyed every aspect of the evening but as we always do, we enjoyed our time with the people we got to spend time with the most.
Reliving the Experience Through our Video
A few days after our tour I received an email with our video and it was so worth waiting for. Besides being professionally edited, our music fit the video perfectly! What a great way to relive that evening over and over again.
We were very impressed with XO Tours and the array of services and options that they offered us. We will definitely try another tour with them when we return to Ho Chi Minh City.
If you find yourself in southern Vietnam and want a food tour, XO Tours is the way to go. Let us know if you give them a try and tell us what you think in the comments.