Travel Tips for Fiji
- Nadi is the tourist hub for the Fijian Islands; it’s got all the accommodation, activities, trips and tours that you could ever need.
- In Fiji there are three main languages spoken; Fijian, Hindi and English.
- English is the language of education here and is spoken by most people in Nadi, Suva and any other major tourist area, making the country extremely easy to travel around.
- Locals are friendly and are always keen to speak to backpackers and travellers. It’s recommended to learn a couple of words of the local language and to get involved in local culture as much as you can; they’ll love you for it. Just dive in at the deep end and get speaking to a few locals at the bar.
- It’;s often safer to get a local bus in Fiji as opposed to a taxi or share-taxis. Even though it’s likely to be a little slow, you’re much more protected than in a car or minibus.
- The cheapest food in Fiji is found on the snack stands dotted along the roads. You can pick up curry or fish and chips for as little as US$1.
- It’s important to stay healthy during your gap year in Fiji. Drink plenty of water, especially during strenuous excursions to remain hydrated and when exposed to direct sunlight.
- Fijian culture encourages sharing and sometimes small things like shoes will be “borrowed”. Often by speaking with the village chief it can be arranged to get things returned.
- Also, be aware that homosexual sex may be a crime in Fiji. While Fiji claims to welcome gay travellers, there has been a recent case where a visitor to the country was initially jailed for two years for paying a local for homosexual sex. He was later freed on appeal.
- To call into Fiji, +679 is the country code. To call internationally out from Fiji, use 00 code to dial out. There are no area codes in Fiji.
- The standard time in Fiji is GMT +12 hours.
- The electricity in Fiji is 240 volt 50 Hz AC (alternating current). The plug is a 3-prong plug (that’s the same as an Australian plug if you didn’t know). Resorts will have plugs in the room, but is is recommemded that you take your own adaptor just to be sure.
Weather in Fiji
- Late April to early November is the best time to travel to Fiji, when there is warm tropical beach weather. Though let’s be honest, there really isn’t a bad time to visit the place.
- Due to the tropical atmosphere there is a wet season which goes from late November to early April. The average temperature in summer is 31°C. In winter the average temperature is around 19°C, which makes the overall average temperature 25°C; lovely jubley.
- The winters are generally dry while the summers are hot and wet. From May to November there is the cool south – east trade winds which travels across the islands.
- If you’re travelling during the wet season it’s best to head to drier regions such as the Mamanuca and Yasawa island groups.
Visas for Fiji
Travelling to Fiji is a dream. The majority of foreign nationals (including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the US, the UK and Ireland and EU countries) are granted a four month visa for free on arrival.
Nationals from countries excluded from the list will have to apply for visas through a Fijian embassy prior to arrival.
You must have a current passport with at least three months validity beyond your departure date and a return or onward airline ticket or proof of onward travel to enter Fiji.
As entry requirements may change from time to time it is strongly advised that you check with the department of foreign affairs or your local consulate or embassy for the current requirements.
Visitors to Fiji are required to pay departure tax but 99% of the time this is included in your flight ticket. Just make sure you check before you arrive.
Words and phrases
These Fijian words and phrases will help you get by and make you sound like the don while in Fiji on your gap year.
- Bula! – A general greeting, pronounced mboo-lah.
- Vinaka – “Please” or “thank you”, pronounced vee-nah-kah.
- Moce – “Goodbye”, pronounced mow-they.
- Tulou – “Sorry”, pronounced tu-loo
- E vei na vale-lailai? – “Where’s the toilet?”, pronounced e-ve-na-val-lie-lie
- Au domoni iko – “I love you”, pronounced o-dom-ni-e-ko