Getting an air conditioner at a reasonable price and with useful features is not easy.
The most popular are 1-1.5 HP machines with inverters, timers and touch control from Toshiba, Daikin, LG, and Panasonic, which cost VND8-12 million (US$345-515).
However, non-inverter products from certain brands like Kangaroo and Sunhouse cost only half those prices.
Asanzo has just launched its iKool air conditioner line at attractive prices starting at only VND3 million.
Le Xuan Hoan, general director of Kangaroo Vietnam, said many products are high-priced because of the big brand tag attached to them, and their actual cost could be much lower.
Vietnamese brands may be cheap but they still come equipped with various technologies such as ion generation, dehumidification and others to combat bacteria and odour.
Nguyen Dai Thang, general director of Sunhouse Group, said nowadays products made by both small and large brands are almost identical.
Even low-priced brands come with warranties and a promise to exchange for a new one if there is a technical defect in the first two years, according to Asanzo.
Ho Kim Hong, owner of an electronics store in HCM City’s Tan Binh district, said air conditioners with and without inverters both have advantages and disadvantages. Those with inverters cost double or triple, and repairs also cost much more due to the integration of many technologies, he said.
Nguyen Van Chung, a repairman, said those with inverters help save electricity.
Electronics stores in HCM City such as Nguyen Kim and Thien Hoa said demand for air conditioners has recently skyrocketed due to the hot weather.
Nguyen Tuan Bao, sales director at Nguyen Kim Electronics Centre, said that shops and supermarkets in HCM City usually offer discounts of only 10 or 15%, but due to the very hot weather now they are offering discounts of 20-50% on fans and air conditioners.
Demand is expected to remain strong since the heat wave is expected to continue for a few weeks, Bao said.
Small electronics shops are also reporting higher sales of cooling products.
A shop owner on Nam Ky Khoi Nghia atreet in District 3 said sales of fans, air conditioners and fruit juicers and blenders have risen significantly.
Demand is expected to continue rising in the coming months, and her sales could go up by 30-40%, she said.
Both large stores and shops are offering promotions to boost sales.
Besides the discounts, they also have promotions. Most are offering free delivery and installation and payment in instalments with zero interest.