We are travelling to Vietnam in June, and have planned a 2 day/1 night trek.
I have heard horror stories about the local women "helping" you along the way, and then very high pressure to buy their highly priced products.
To be clear, I don't mind supporting the local people/local economy and I do understand that tourists are their livelihood. But I'm worried that we will be harassed by many people expecting us to buy things after their assistance on our walk. I've been told that it may not just be one helper per adult in our group, but potentially many more hangers on.
I really dislike conflict and pressure and would just like to enjoy the countryside without feeling uncomfortable. I would pay substantially more for the trek to not have to worry about this!! So much so that I'm wondering if we should not go to Sapa and go elsewhere instead.
I would like to know how people have got on with this, what was your experience? Did you feel harassed by multiple people? Were they pleasant or aggressive? How much did you end up buying from them? Was it Ok to say no thank you to their help?