Many restaurants have offered their own transport services or ride-hailing discounts for customers.
A restaurant on Nguyen Khoai Street in Hai Ba Trung District has put up an eye-catching poster saying that “Drink, don’t drive. VND100,000 (USD4.34) subsidy for customer’s getting home”.
Pham Thi Thanh Thuy, the restaurant manager said that more people had come by taxi and motorbike service.
“We have arranged a free overnight parking area for drunk drivers. We have also given them a 50% discount code on a ride-hailing trip, valid up to VND100,000,” Thuy added.
Around 50-100 people use this per day, Thuy said.
“We want to uphold the new law to keep our customers and other people safe on the road,” she noted.
According to Nguyen Thi Phuong, 32, who has established a service in Hanoi to help transport drunk drivers’ vehicles home in Hanoi, over the recent days, her company has been overwhelmed by demand. The charges depend on different distances. For instance, it costs customers VND150,000 for five kilometres and VND100,000 for below two kilometres.
Phuong is recruiting more staff to meet surging demand. She has expanded the service to Uong Bi and Ha Long cities in Quang Ninh.
Nguyen Van Hung, a resident in Cau Giay District, said that he strongly advocated the higher fines for drunk driving to mitigate traffic accidents.
Customer numbers have significantly fallen in lots of restaurants. More guests are opting for water or soft drinks over beer.
Under the new law on drunk driving, drivers must be completely sober while driving any vehicle on Vietnam’s roads.
Drunk car drivers will be fined up to VND30-40m (USD1,300-USD1,818) instead of the previous fine of about USD814 if tests show that alcohol content exceeds 80mg per 100 ml of blood or 0.4mg per litre of breath. In addition, their licenses will be revoked for 22-24 months compared to a previous 4-6 months.
Up to 40% of traffic accidents in Vietnam are related to excessive drinking, the World Health Organisation reported.