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Smile A Brief history of Vietnam phone card collections

A brief history of Vietnam phone card collections
Writen by Lam Da Vu on Mar. 2000

Vietnam phone card collection is just a newborn to the world but it is really very interesting and fascinating for all worldwide collectors because of its unique, beauty, rareness, attractiveness, conciseness and easy collectibles

“Yellow Card” – Magnetic phone cards

This is the first whole magnetic phone-card collection in Vietnam, which includes 73 different models by this Mar 2000. Till now they are still most popular in the collection world and this on is definitely considered to be the main and first collection in Viet Nam phone-card history.

The phone card in Vietnam appeared rather late comparing to other countries’. The early models came out just since 1991. For being not so widely used from the beginning, quantity is very limited, just about 5,000 pieces to 50,000 for each model and the company-a joint venture between The Central Post &Telecom of Vietnam and a Malaysian Co.-Uniphonekad- issued about 7 different models per year. The cards are ordered and made in England. They are 04 different face values: 30,000VND / 60,000VND / 150,000VND / 300,000VND, that are considered very high value comparing to a Vietnamese average income (average salary: 500,000VND). Maybe there are just a few countries in the world having such high face value phone like this.

They are plastic and magnetic, beautiful and shining but easy to be scratched or bent if not carefully used. The themes on card usually are: Viet Nam traditional pictures, artists paintings, landscapes, ceremonial, New Year’s, animal, flowers, anniversaries, and some limited advertisements. They are unique and rare because there are very few collectors to keep them only. Normal consumers usually throw them after using-so it is very difficult to collect the old and rare models. There are 02 variety cards till now and about 7 models issued in the province (not in the big cities). In Vietnam, there are about 4 big cities and 5 provinces, which have these phone-card systems. But the joint venture contract is nearly expired, so the post office has already stopped setting up telephone booths since last year. We call “Yellow cards” because all the booths are painted in yellow color.

“Blue card” – Chip phone cards

In replace, the Central Post & Telecom of Vietnam has made another joint Venture in issuing the chip phone cards since 1997, they are not so popular nowadays but it is certain it shall be most popular after the “yellow card” disappear forever. Since they are still not popular now, the post office issued just only 4 different models per year. Till this Mar 2000, there are only 12 different models in collection. They are 04 different face values: 50,000VND / 100,000VND / 150,000VND / 300,000VND (Also very high value!). (Exchange rate: 14,100VND/USD).

They also have some themes but the early models are just advertisements. Nowadays, many more and more people use them because more telephone booths have being set up. The Central Post & Telecom of Vietnam established this system in the whole country – in every province and city and all the booths are painted in blue colors.

“The O2 French unissued chip phone cards”

There is a special case that in 1994, a French company – Slumbegger- in trying to set up a joint venture in Hanoi issued for trial 02 first chip cards (The first chip cards in Vietnam history). But regretfully this project was failed resulting this company had to remove some first telephone booths. These 02 models of cards were not officially used and were immediately withdrawn from the market right after some experiments. Some small and unknown quantity is in flows to market. It is obvious they are very mint, hot sought for all collectors. Every collector wants this couple not only because this trial ordered quantity is extremely rare but also it has very nice and typical pictures – one is One Pillar Pagoda (300,000VND) and Hanoi Post & Telecom Building – two famous symbolic images of Vietnam.
Currently, the price of this couple has increasing rapidly in the collector’s market.

“Prepaid phone cards”

Just in last November 1999, this type of phone card was born with the first 02 models with face value 300,000VND and 500,000VND. Each card has its own given number that is to be scratched to see and use it to in put in the mobile phone.
Same as VINACARD, it came out same time and same face value but instead of using unscratched number, it uses a chip on the card.
In Vietnam, there are just a few people noticing and collecting them at present.

Nowadays, many people on the world starts collecting more and more Asian-country phone cards because of their traditional, cultural, national characteristics as well as of other attractive features. Vietnam, with Laos and Cambodia, is one of the most exciting countries joining the world of phone card collection.

Mar. 2000
By Da Vu
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9 Thành viên sau đây nói lời CẢM ƠN bạn @LDV vì đã gửi Bài viết hữu ích này:
Biahoi (02-01-2010), Dat_stamp (28-01-2012), HaSapa (02-06-2013), hat_de (28-12-2009), manh thuong (29-12-2009), Ng.H.Thanh (28-12-2009), temsong (01-04-2013), thanhtruc (16-01-2013), thantrongdao (11-12-2010)
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