TRAVEL TIPS

Airports

Vanuatu's international port of entry for APrIGF is Bauerfield Airport on Efate. The airport is situated 10 minutes from the island’s city centre, being Port Vila.

Airport Tax

International departure tax in Vanuatu is 3,400 VT per person (over the age of 12) and is included in airfares.

Banking and Currency

The Vanuatu currency is known as the Vatu. Although Australian dollars are accepted by many shops, restaurants and hotels in Vila, they are not readily accepted outside of these town centres or on outer islands. All major foreign currencies are exchangeable in Vanuatu for Vatu. Daily fluctuations in the exchange rate do occur, so it's best to plan ahead to ensure you get the best possible rate.

Banks found in Vanuatu are BSP, ANZ, National Bank of Vanuatu and Bred Bank. Banking hours are as follows range between 9am to 3.30pm Monday to Friday.

There are currently more than 250 EFTPOS outlets around Port Vila and Luganville which accept the following cards – Visa, MasterCard, Cirrus, Amex, JCB & Plus card and Access International Debit Card.

Major credit cards Visa, MasterCard, and to a lesser extent, American Express and Diners Club are accepted at most major resorts and hotels and some restaurants and shops in Port Vila. Cash advances on Visa and Mastercard are available during bank hours.

Travellers cheques are widely accepted by the major banks and most of the larger resorts and hotels in Port Vila.

International and domestic cash transfers are available at Western Union branches, Vanuatu Post and Goodies in Port Vila (Opening hours: 8 am until 5.30-6.00 pm Monday to Friday and 8.30 am to 4.00 pm weekends and public holidays).

ATM facilities are available in Port Vila where travellers can use their credit cards.

Cash when travelling Generally, it is handy to carry at least 500 VT to 2,000 VT with you to any activity as some cafes and tours don't have EFTPOS or credit card facilities.

Business and Shopping Hours

Business hours are usually 7:30am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday with lunch from 11:30am to 1:30pm, some shops close during lunch hours though supermarkets, banks, the post office and Chinese-owned shops remain open. Larger supermarkets remain open until 7.30pm.

Shops are open Saturday's until 5.00pm, while supermarkets are open until 7:30pm.

Most shops are closed on Sundays, except on cruise ship days when shops in Port Vila are open. Chinese-owned shops remain open all weekend. Alcohol can not be bought in any shop or supermarket after 12:00pm on Saturday and all day Sunday.

Climate

The cooler, drier season, and generally the best time to visit, is between May and October where the average daytime temperature is approximately 26°C.

The wetter and hotter season is between November and April where the average daytime temperature is approximately 29°C.

For the most current weather information and a forecast summary throughout all island provinces and capital Port Vila, visit the Vanuatu Meteorological Services website.