Two-wheelers are the most popular mode of transport in Vietnam, especially in big and dense cities such as Hanoi. Motorbikes and scooters suit Hanoi’s narrow streets and tiny alleys that connect one quarter with the next, allowing commuters to avoid the congested main roads.
Motorbikes in Hanoi are used to carry everything—from a four-member family to cartons of eggs stacked to dangerous heights. Street vendors and delivery guys use bikes extensively.
These unusual cargo began to fascinate Jon Enoch, a freelance photographer based in London. “The huge pile of eggs, towering bags of ice or an enormous mound of flowers, was visually so stunning I started asking people if I could take photos of them,” he says.
“Mopeds are a way of life in South East Asia, the workhorse of the city, carrying a vast and unusual array of goods” he says. “When I first travelled around South East Asia, 15 years ago, the number of motorbikes and mopeds just astounded me. Initially, that level of traffic that never stops is overwhelming to the senses - you wonder how you'll ever manage to cross a road. I began to be fascinated by the drivers and deliveries.”
According to The Guardian, there are 5 million two-wheelers in Hanoi—a city with a population of 7.6 million. That’s practically one bike per person, assuming a quarter of the population to be too young to drive. Hanoi’s traffic is so bad that in 2017 government announced that they would ban motorbikes and scooters by 2030 to ease congestion and air pollution.
All photographs by Jon Enoch