Everything you need to know for a safe, stress free trip to Fiji
Below are useful travel tips and advice when travelling to Fiji including special customs to be aware of, local traditions and advice for new travelers.
There are two seasons in Fiji – warm and even warmer with temperatures ranging between 26°C – 31°C. Depending upon what you are seeking from your Fiji holiday will determine what time of year best suits your requirements.
From April to early October the sun isn’t quite as hot nor the humidity as high. The days are warm but the nights cooler. From November to May can get very hot and humid. As with all tropical climates, sudden rain showers are frequently followed by strong burst of cloudless, sunny skies.
What is the money in Fiji called?
The Fijian dollar is the basic unit of currency, available in denominations of $2, $5, $10, $20, $50. Coins: 1c, 2c, 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c and $1. There is no limit to the amount of money to be brought in. Visitors are allowed to take out currency up to the amount imported. Approximately 2 Fiji dollars equals 1 US Dollar. Australian dollars can be exchanged for Fijian Dollars at most hotels and bank and major credit cards are generally accepted.
Are there credit card facilities in Fiji?
Major credit cards are welcomed by most hotels, restaurants, shops, rental car agencies, tours, cruises and travel agents in Fiji. American Express, Diners Club, Visa, JCB International and MasterCard, are represented in Suva. American Express and VISA can replace lost credit cards and travelers cheques.
Fiji entry requirements
For stays not exceeding 30 days, visas are not required by nationals of Commonwealth countries, EU countries, USA or Japan. However you must have a valid, ongoing or return airline ticket and your Passport must be valid for six months beyond your intended stay in Fiji.
Fiji is free from malaria, yellow fever and major tropical diseases that are endemic to most tropical countries. It has an effective medical system in place although local people still believe in the efficacy of age-old herbal remedies. Fresh water reticulated in Suva, Lautoka and the other major towns has been treated and is safe to drink from the tap. This also applies to hotels and resorts. Some resorts use artesian water for bathing, but provide drinking water separately. If this is the case, visitors will be advised.
Do you need to get any vaccinations?
Yellow fever and cholera vaccinations are only required if coming from an infected area as designated by the World Health Organisation. Yellow Fever vaccination certificate is required for travelers over I year of age coming from an infected area.
Do they speak English in Fiji?
Almost everyone in Fiji speaks English – as it is the official language, but the Fijian language is preserved and widely spoken in many different dialects. Almost everyone is bilingual and many Fijian terms are included in everyday English usage. Bula! This is the common Fijian greeting. It goes beyond the simple hello, to incorporate spirit and literally means life.
Helpful Fijian words include:
- Ni Sa Bula / Bula Vinaka – A warm Hello
- Yadra Vinaka – Good Morning
- Vathava tiko – How are you?
- Vinaka – Thank you
- Ni Sa Mothe – Goodbye
- Kerekere – Please
Fiji shopping and what to buy
Whether shopping or just browsing, here’s your opportunity to become acquainted with some of the savviest Fijians as well the best barterers around. In Fiji, you’ll discover unique cultural and historical artifacts, stylish international boutique fashions as well as budget gift and souvenir shops. Most stores are open 8am to 5pm or 6pm, sometimes later at hotels and resorts. Most stores are closed on Sundays. All of your major credit cards are widely accepted.
Dining – Fiji food
Dining in Fiji offers a multiethnic culinary experience. Whether dining at your hotel, island resort or “in town”, you’ll find a palate painted by flavours from India, China, Korea, Japan, Italy and the best of Europe as well as Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific waters.
Restaurants run the gamut from five star international to 24-hour air-conditioned coffee shops. Steaks and local seafood can be found in most restaurants as can the specialties of our own Fijian cooking heritage. Most hotels and resorts also offer specific culinary themed nights, magiti (Fijian feasts), beach or poolside BBQ’s, as well as Fiji’s best known and pervasive outdoor cooking experience-the lovo, an underground oven of heated rocks cooking a variety of foods wrapped in banana leaves. covered with earth and coming out after several hours of cooking with a faintly smoky flavour, lovos, produce succulent, tender meats, chicken, seafood, and given the proper occasion, a whole suckling pig!.
Local transport and getting around Fiji
Getting around the islands is easy with Fiji Airways sister airline, Pacific Sun or jump aboard a sea transfer to the islands and on the main island of Viti Levu, taxis, private cars or coach transfers are available.
Driving is on the left-hand side of the road. Fiji’s two International airports are Nadi, on the western side and Nausori on the east coast of Viti Levu near Suva.
Should you tip staff in Fiji?
Tipping is not encouraged in Fiji and it is left to the individual to determine whether to make a gratuity. In lieu of daily tipping, some resorts operate a staff Christmas fund where “tips” are shared.
Can you drink the water in Fiji?
Fresh water reticulated in Nadi, Suva, Lautoka and other major towns has been treated and is safe to drink from the tap. It tastes good too!
What is the duty free allowance in Fiji?
2.25 litres of alcohol (liquor, wine and champagne).
50 grams of cigarettes OR 50 grams of tobacco/cigars.
Fiji Public Holidays
New Year’s Day – Monday 3rd January
Good Friday – Friday 25th March
Easter Saturday – Saturday 26th March
Easter Monday – Monday 28th March
Prophet Mohammed’s Birthday – Monday 25th April
National Youth Day – Friday 6th May
Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna Day – Monday 30th May
Queen’s Birthday – (to be confirmed by the British High Commission)
Fiji Day – Monday 10th October
Diwali – Tuesday 1st November
Christmas Day – Monday 26th December
Boxing Day – Tuesday 27th December
Need help planning your Fiji holiday?
We are specialist Fiji travel agents and no-one knows the extraordinary Fiji Islands like we do! Whether you’re planning a family holiday, romantic escape or honeymoon, destination Fiji wedding, luxury escape, diving or surfing holiday or corporate travel, we can organise every aspect of your travel. If you’re a first time traveler to Fiji we can answer any questions and avail any concerns you may have. Seasoned Fiji travelers, we love nothing better than hearing about your personal experiences and any worthwhile tips and advice you think we should be sharing with our clients.