Planning a vacation to Vanuatu. Then you need to read our helpful tips and useful visitor information to ensure you make the most of your upcoming holiday.

Visas & useful Visitor Information

Immigration
Upon entering Vanuatu a tourist stay of max. 30 days is typically granted. You require a valid passport, which is valid for at least three months on arrival, a valid return or onward ticket and sufficient funds to finance your stay. You can demonstrate this with cash, travelers checks or a credit card. There are no special requirements with respect to mandatory vaccinations for tourists. Upon arrival, an “Arrival Card” “be filled with personal data; This is already being distributed on board the aircraft.

On arrival in Vanuatu, the traveler is asked for an explanation on any brought food, plants and products of animal origin. To protect the pristine nature and agriculture Tonga has strict rules regarding the importation of food, animals and plants.

International Departure in Vanuatu
Check-in time for international flights from Vanuatu is 120 minutes before departure.

The airport tax (“Airport Departure Tax”) currently stands at 2800 vuv per person. The airport tax is already included in the price of pre-purchased tickets.

Electricity
The electricity in Vanuatu is 240V / 50Hz. The sockets are three pin, identical to those in use in Australia and New Zealand.

Entertainment & Night Life
Only in Port Villa is there significant nightlife (restaurants, bars and discos). There are three casinos located in Port Vila, the Palms Casino (at the Holiday Inn Resort) Club 21 (at the Melanesian Hotel) and Jupiters Casino Vanuatu (at the Sebel Hotel).

Most tourists, however, continue in the evening in their hotel to dine and socialize in the bar. Some hotels offer on certain nights of the week, a traditional dance show. Outside Port Vila and outer islands there is not really any nightlife.

Food & Drink
In Port Villa you will find several fast food restaurants, local “takeaways” and small restaurants (such as bistros, Pizarias and Asian restaurants). There are many excellent restaurants available here. Especially fish specialties are worth trying here. The dress code is usually informal “Casual”, although in upscale restaurants resorts sometimes evening dress is appreciated. Outside the larger cities and you are reliant on the outer islands in the restaurant of your accommodation.

Because the islands of Vanuatu are surrounded by the ocean, you will find on the menu an abundance of tuna and other large sea fish and shellfish. In traditional cuisine sweet potato and cassava is typically used (both the root and the leaves).

Internet
If you have your laptop or smartphone along on your trip, you can use it in certain places using a wifi connection (e.g. At airports, hotel lobbies, at Starbucks, etc.)

If you want to access the internet on the go, that you need to purchase a SIM card (or dongle) for the UMTS network. These are for sale in the shops of the major telecom providers (such as Telstra and Vodafone). Along the main routes and in most places the mobile reception is good.

Currency & costs

Currency
The Ni-Vanuatu Vatu is the currency of Vanuatu.

In Vanuatu, the banking system well developed. Vanuatu has namely profiled as a tax haven. On each island you will find (in the main town) a bank, usually with cash machine (ATM).

In Port Vila you will find many banks, such as Westpac and ANZ bank, where you can do your banking. Opening hours are: Mon-Fri 8.30 am 16.00. Only at the Port Vila and Luganville airport you will find an ATM.

Tipping
In principle, tipping is not mandatory, but if you have received exceptional service then you can express your appreciation by giving a small tip. Service charges and taxes are generally included in the price.

When to go

Climate
The best time to Vanuatu to go is between May and October, in the “winter” of Vanuatu. This is the dry season, which means that the air is virtually clear sky. The temperature is even in the winter around 25 degrees.

What to wear for the climate
When you plan your visit to the Vanuatu it is best to bring light summer clothing. When visiting a local village residents make sure not to show up in swimwear, but with shirt or t-shirt.

Consider a thin raincoat (for walks) and plastic sandals or reef shoes (for protection against coral). Bring a hat or cap to protect against the sun. The shops will otherwise provide virtually everything that you need to enjoy your holiday.

Getting there

Vanuatu’s only international airport is on the island of Efate, just to the north of the capital Port Villa (Bauer Airfield).

Air New Zealand offers flights from / to Auckland (New Zealand). Air Pacific flys to Nadi (Fiji) fly, which provides connection to flights to Los Angeles and europe.

Air Vanuatu flys to Auckland, Brisbane, Honiara (Solomon Islands), Nadi and Sydney. With Qantas, you can fly to Brisbane and Sydney, which provides connection to flights to the US and Europe.

Getting around

The distances on Efate and Santo are still quite large. On Efate, Malekula, Santo and Tanna there are public buses avaliable. The bus services are driven by private companies. The buses usually have all the windows open, are often crowded and make many stops making a journey of 100 km 3 to 4 hours.

There are fixed stops (bus stop), boarding outside the specified stations is not possible. You pay the driver upon boarding.

Health & safety

Health
The climate in Vanuatu is pleasant, therefore you usually do not need to take any special medical precautions. However, the best you can go to your family doctor for specific advice.

Vanuatu has almost no dangerous or poisonous animals. The most dangerous animal is probably the shark. Inside the reefs in the lagoon from time to time you will see small harmless reef sharks. The larger shark species – such as the hammer head, tiger shark and white shark – like deep water so you are only likely to encounter if you are scuba diving outside of the lagoon.

Remember that the coral is sharp. To prevent sores and possible infections, we recommend that you wear plastic sandals or reef shoes when you are walking or in shallow water over coral is swimming over the coral. If you have to cut the coral the risk of infection is very large, do not wait to long to use antibiotics.

Water in Vanuatu
Tap water is generally safe to drink on Fiji, but chlorinated. For safety, however, we advise you to boil your drinking water or buy bottled water.

Sunburn in Vanuatu
Vanuatu is located in the tropics, the air is not polluted and pure. This brings strong solar radiation unhindered on earth. Head covering and a sunscreen with a high protection factor is so highly recommended.

Country Profile

Population
The population of Vanuatu is 252,763.

Religion
Approximately 83% of the population of Vanuatu is Christian. An estimated 32% is Presbyterian, 13% Roman Catholic, 13% Anglican, and 11% Seventh-day Adventist.

Language
Vanuatu has three official languages, English, French, and Bislama, a creole language evolved from English. Bislama is the first language of many urban ni-Vanuatu, that is, the residents of Port Vila and Luganville.