Television in Vietnam

Get to grips with TV standards and find out what's available to the TV viewer in Vietnam...

There are three main television/video standards in use throughout the world:

  • NTSC - used in the USA, Canada, Japan and some other countries
  • PAL - used in most of Western Europe, Australasia and South Africa
  • SECAM - used in France and Eastern Europe

The three systems are not compatible with each other. It is not possible to watch television on a NTSC or SECAM appliance, or to use DVD or video players configured for these systems. Multi-standard TV, DVD or video equipment will be able to play a PAL (or NTSC) camcorder, DVD player or games console.

The television transmission standard in Vietnam is PAL.

Television Stations in Vietnam

The main television company in Vietnam is the state broadcaster Vietnam Television (VTV) and its channels are controlled by the Ministry of Information and Communications. There is no television licence in Vietnam.

The largest local TV broadcaster, and the second largest after VTV, is Ho Chi Minh City Television (HTV).

Terrestrial TV Channels

VTV has six main channels, which deal with the following subjects:

  • VTV1 – political, economic, cultural and social news
  • VTV2 – education, science, technology, news
  • VTV3 – sport, entertainment, economic news
  • VTV4 – home affairs, international news
  • VTV5 – local news
  • VTV6 – youth channel

Besides the national VTV channels, each city or province also has their own television stations. These channels are free to view although programmes are in Vietnamese.

Cable TV

Cable TV has been greatly developed in Vietnam over recent years. The two main companies which provide cable TV are Vietnam Cable TV (HTVC) which is owned by HTV and the state-owned Saigontourist Cable Television Company (SCTV).

HTCV supplies both national and international channels with SDTV (Standard Definition Television) and HDTV (High Definition Television).

  • HTCV
    : 14 Dinh Tien Hoang, P. Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
    : (08) 39104746
  • For a list of HTCV cable TV channels: Click here (in Vietnamese)
  • For a list of international channels: Click here

SCTV is another company providing cable television in Vietnam. The company also provides and Internet access.

  • SCTV
    At: 31-33 Dinh Cong Trang, Tan Dinh Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City
    : (08) 38205605
    Fax: (08) 3820 5705

Getting connected

The following documents are needed for foreigners to connect to HTVC or SCTV cable TV:

  • Copy of passport
  • Valid visa and proof of employment
  • Deposit (reimbursed on cancellation of service)
  • Installation fee
  • Monthly equipment rental fee
  • For details of HTVC fees: Click here (in Vietnamese)

To take out a contract with HTVC contact them online or by telephone to make an appointment for a connection.

To take out a contract with SCTV contact them through their call centre by telephone or by email:

  • Tel: 1900 1878

IPTV (Internet Protocol Television)

There are a number of IPTV providers, which deliver television services over the Internet, including: