From Vietnam to Cambodia via Ha Tien border in details: prices and contacts.
Ho Chi Minh - Ha Tien by bus
After spending several days in Ho Chi Minh, I planned to go to Cambodia, Kep or Kampot, I was not sure. I wanted to go to Ben Xe Mien Tay bus station and buy a direct ticket from Ho Chi Minh City to Ha Tien, a sleeping bus, 200.000 dongs for a ticket (I hoped to deal with this bus company). But I never did it. At some moment, I got an "AC sickness", a light flu or something like that and realized I was not ready for such a long trip. So I decided to go to Can Tho first, only around 3-4 hours from HCMC by bus, mostly because they have a very special guesthouse there, a rotong bungallow type, only 5$ a room, located in a garden along a river in a rural area. An incredible place! Learn more on booking.com. (By the way, the rate of Vientamese dong to UD dollar at the moment (November - December 2016) was around 23.000 dongs for 1 USD.)
Ho Chi Minh - Can Tho at late night by bus
I decided to go to Can Tho all of a sudden at midnight and I asked a receptionist of A in Hotel where I was staying in a dormitory if he could help me. The guy was the friendliest one, he booked a ticket (for free) and provided me with all necessary information. So I had a bus from Ho Chi Minh to Can Tho at 2 a.m. by THÀNH BƯỞI bus company (www.thanhbuoi.com.vn). I paid 60.000 dongs (after a short bargain) for a taxi from Bui Vien (backpackers' street of HCMC) to the bus company's nearest office. The price of a bus ticket from Ho Chi Minh to Can Tho was 100.000 dongs including FREE TRANFER from Can Tho bus station to the hotel. By the way, 2 a.m. is too early to start from HCMC to Can Tho since there was not much traffic at night and the whole trip lasted 2.5 hours. My ranking for THÀNH BƯỞI bus company: 10 out of 10, excellent.
Can Tho - Ha Tien by bus
After several days at amazing Maivien Orchard Resort, I started my way to Cambodia. I booked a ticket for a minivan from Can Tho to Ha Tien at Maivien Orchard Resort (the booking fee was just 10.000 dongs). The price of the ticket was 125.000 dongs (with free transfer). Here, I got also travel mates, two young guys from France. We expected the trip would take 6 hours but it lasted only 4 (maybe because it was a direct bus without visiting Rach Gia city). So we arrived into Ha Tien at 13:00.
Ha Tien bus station
As soon as we left the minibus, a group of mototaxi drivers came up. The leader of them offered a ride to Tran Hau Street for 40.000 dongs each person. I asked a discount and offer 20.000 dongs for each person and got an answer "30.000 dongs". Okey. (Still http://wikitravel.org/en/Ha_Tien says "don't pay more than 1 USD (23.000 dongs) for any motodrive within Ha Tien city"). Motodrivers, by the way, were very friendly and reported that Tran Hau Street (on the title photo in the very top) is full of travel agencies that sell bus tickets to Cambodia.
From Ha Tien to Kep
So three scooters brought us exactly to a travel agency that sells ticket to Cambodia:
The French guys were going to Kep so they were asked to pay 9 USD for a ticket from Ha Tien to Kep.
From Ha Tien to Kampot
As for me, I chose to go to Kampot. The price of a bus ticket Ha Tien - Kampot was 12 USD. In December 2016, they had minibuses to Kep and Kampot at 13:00 and 16:00. Contacts of the travel agency: firstname.lastname@example.org (They speak English and are motivated to work, so don't hesitate to ask if you need.) We were late for a 13:00 minibus from Ha Tien to Cambodia so we had time to relax, take a few pictures and eat a nice soup. A big bowl with chicken broth, vegetables and noodle for 30.000 dongs only, just a stall in the street, quite decent, next to our travel agency. Eventually, a lady arrived and invited us to take a seat in her minivan. There were only three of us in the minibus. Other travelers crossed the border at 13:00, the lady said.
Crossing the border near Ha Tien
All of us had read ugly stories about corruption on Cambodian border so we felt a bit frightened about upcoming experience. But here, in Ha Tien, we felt more relaxed. The city is peaceful, people are friendly as everywhere in South Vietnam. Our driver was a Vientnamese lady Mary with perfect French (as well as good English) who seemed to know everybody on the both sides of the border. We even didn't talk to the officials on the border at all. The lady solved everything, even filled papers for my visa (for free). Each of us paid 35$ for visa + 1$ for a some kind of fake medical paper. Yeah, it is known that the real price of Cambodia visa is 30$ and you don't have to pay for a useless medical paper but neither me nor my travel mates wanted to argue with the lady and the officials that seemed to be pacified by thoughts about the oncoming end of working day. Altogether the way from Ha Tien to Kep took a bit more than 1 hour. After Kep, where we said bye bye to our French guys, me and Mary headed to Kampot. Around 20 minutes later, we were at the place, in the very center of Kampot city.