Exercise normal safety precautions in Fiji. Use common sense and look out for suspicious behaviour, as you would in Australia. Monitor the media and other sources for changes to local travelling conditions.
- Cyclone season is November to April. Check information on cyclones, including links to local meteorological services and advice on what to do in a cyclone. See Additional information.
- On 21 March 2018, the
Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services declared an outbreak of meningococcal disease. According to the
World Health Organization (WHO), meningococcal can be highly fatal. Symptoms include high fever, sensitivity to light or nausea. Seek urgent medical advice if symptoms persist. See Health.
- There is currently no operational hyperbaric (decompression) chamber in Fiji, as the only chamber available, located at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva, is undergoing long-term maintenance. Dive well within safety limits and ensure you have travel and health insurance that includes coverage for diving and evacuation costs. See Health.
- Driving at night can be dangerous because of insufficient street lighting, stray animals and poor quality roads. Exercise caution. See Local travel.
- Expatriates and tourists have been the victim of violent crime, including sexual assault. Be vigilant. See Safety and security.
- Outbreaks of endemic mosquito-borne illnesses (including dengue fever) are common. Protect yourself against mosquito bites. See Health.
- In recent years, a number of Australians have been evacuated from cruise ships to Lautoka and Suva for hospitalisation. Check your travel insurance policy to ensure you understand exactly what your policy covers. See Health.
Travel smart for general advice for all travellers.
Entry and exit
Australians don't need a visa to travel to Fiji for tourism. Visitor visas for stays of less than four months are issued on arrival, provided you have a return ticket and confirmation of accommodation.
You may require a visa for other purposes. Visa and other entry and exit conditions (such as currency, customs and quarantine regulations) can change at short notice. Contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Fiji for up-to-date information.
Strict customs regulations apply to the import of items such as food, weapons and sexually explicit material.
Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority
Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months from the date you intend to return to Australia. Carry copies of a recent passport photo with you in case you need a replacement passport while overseas.
Your passport is a valuable document and attractive to criminals who may try to use your identity to commit crimes. Always keep it in a safe place.
If your passport is lost or stolen, you must notify the Australian Government as soon as possible. You can either:
Australian dollars can be readily exchanged for local currency, the Fiji dollar (FJD). Declare amounts in excess of FJD 5,000 (or equivalent) on arrival, and amounts in excess of FJD 10,000 (or equivalent) on departure.
Safety and security
Robbery, theft, violent assault, including sexual assault, and home invasions occur in Fiji. Most crime is opportunistic. Incidents occur more frequently in urban areas and at night. Expatriates and tourists have been victims.
Be particularly careful in downtown Suva at night. Be aware of your surroundings. More information:
- Be cautious when using ATMs. Try to avoid using ATMs on the street. Protect your PIN.
- Credit card fraud and the use of skimming devices occurs. Monitor your transaction statements.
- Avoid carrying excess cash.
- Avoid wearing expensive watches, jewellery and cameras.
- Keep car windows closed and doors locked at all times.
- Avoid leaving cash, valuables or bags on display in cars.
Civil unrest and political tension
Avoid demonstrations, street rallies and areas of military activity.
Check points and road closures, are sometimes put in place by local authorities.
Follow the instructions of local authorities.
Terrorism is a threat throughout the world.
More information: Terrorist threat worldwide
Severe weather in Fiji can affect tourist services, including road access and flights in and out of the country.
Outside of tourist areas, the dress code in Fiji is conservative. Take care not to offend.
Homosexual acts between adults are not illegal in Fiji, but be aware of local sensitivities. Open displays of affection could offend, particularly in rural communities.
Tourism services or products
The safety standards you might expect of tour operators are not always met, especially for adventure sports (including diving) or on boats in rivers, coastal waters and between islands.
Sometimes insufficient life jackets are available for boats, rafts and kayaks. If appropriate safety equipment isn't available, use another provider.
Always use available safety equipment, such as lifejackets or seatbelts, even if others don't.
Driving, particularly at night, can be dangerous because of insufficient street lighting, stray animals and poor quality roads.
Road safety and driving
Carry your driver's licence with you at all times. You must have a valid International Driving Permit, which may be required by car rental companies. Also check for special requirements for motorcycle licences as driving without the correct licences can affect your insurance.
Fiji Land Transport Authority
Taxis are of variable quality. Only use licensed taxis; they have a yellow registration plate.
Not all minibuses are licensed by the Land Transport Authority (LTA). As with taxis, those with yellow number plates have been approved by the LTA. Unlicensed minibuses may not be insured.
Before boarding inter-island or other vessels, check the operators' credentials and safety equipment in advance and ensure your travel insurance policy covers your planned activities. Do not travel on any overloaded vessel.
Travelling by boat
The Australian Government doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths, including in Fiji.
More information on aviation safety and security:
You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling, especially for an extended stay.
If arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our
Consular services charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.
Court proceedings can be lengthy. The Australian Government can't influence the time it takes for a case to progress through court procedures. The police and military retain extensive powers of detention, arrest and search. There are limitations on judicial redress for decisions made by authorities.
Possession of any quantity of illicit drugs may result in a prison sentence.
It is illegal to be under the influence of alcohol while at an airport or when on an aeroplane. Intoxicated airline travellers may be detained by police, including on arrival.
Some Australian criminal laws apply overseas. If you commit these offences, you may be prosecuted in Australia. Laws include those relating to:
- bribery of foreign public officials
- child pornography
- child sex tourism
- female genital mutilation
- forced marriage
- money laundering
Staying within the law
Information for dual nationals
Fiji recognises dual nationality. If you're a dual national, you should still travel on your Australian passport.
If arrested or detained, dual Australian/Fijian citizens should ask local officials for consular assistance from the Australian High Commission.
Take out comprehensive travel insurance before you depart to cover overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation.
Remember, regardless of how healthy and fit you are, if you cannot afford travel insurance, you cannot afford to travel. The Australian Government will not pay for your medical expenses overseas or medical evacuation costs. This can be very expensive and cost you many thousands of dollars upfront.
In recent years, a number of Australians have been evacuated from cruise ships to Lautoka and Suva for hospitalisation. Many are evacuated as a result of medical incidents arising from pre-existing conditions. Ensure that you declare any pre-existing conditions to your insurer.
- what circumstances and activities are and are not covered under your policy, particularly if you are visiting Fiji on a cruise
- that you are covered for the whole time you will be away.
Remember to extend your insurance if you extend your trip.
Physical and mental health
It's important to consider your physical and mental health before travelling, especially if you have an existing medical condition.
- At least eight weeks before you depart, see your doctor or travel clinic for a basic health check-up, and to discuss your travel plans and implications for your health.
- Get vaccinated before you travel.
Take prescription medicine with you so you remain in good health. Always carry on your person a copy of your prescription or a letter from your doctor stating what the medicine is, your dosage and that it is for personal use only.
Not all medications available over the counter or by prescription in Australia are available in other countries. Some may be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor. You could be arrested or have your medicine confiscated if you bring in restricted medication or do not have correct documentation. This includes countries where you are only transiting and do not leave the airport, as well as your final destination.
Before you leave Australia check if your medication is legal in each country you are travelling to.
The standard of medical facilities in Fiji is not as high as in Australia. Public hospitals and medical facilities are generally not as well-equipped as hospitals in Australia for services, specialist equipment (including neo-natal), diagnostics and pharmaceuticals. Many regional hospitals provide only basic services. Rescue and emergency services are not as comprehensive as they are in Australia.
Hotels and resorts rely on public health facilities during medical emergencies.
Before admitting patients, hospitals usually require:
- guarantee of payment
- confirmation of medical insurance
- an up-front deposit for services.
For serious illness or accident, medical evacuation to Australia is usually necessary. Costs for evacuation are high. Ensure that your travel insurance covers medical evacuation.
Fiji's only hyperbaric (decompression) chamber, located at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva, is undergoing long-term maintenance. Dive well within safety limits and ensure you have travel and health insurance that includes coverage for diving and evacuation costs.
On 21 March 2018, the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services
declared an outbreak of meningococcal disease. According to the WHO, meningococcal can be highly fatal. Symptoms include high fever, sensitivity to light or nausea. Seek urgent medical advice if symptoms persist
The traditional drink, kava, has potential health risks. It can cause dangerous reactions with alcohol and prescription medications, including anti-depressants.
More information: Kava fact sheet
Outbreaks of dengue fever and
Zika virus occur, including serious outbreaks from time to time. If you are pregnant, discuss any travel plans with your doctor and defer non-essential travel to affected areas. Monitor local media for health announcements.
Protect yourself against mosquito-borne illnesses by:
- ensuring your accommodation is mosquito proof
- taking measures to avoid insect bites, including using always using insect repellent and wearing long, loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing.
Water-borne, food-borne and other infectious diseases
Water-borne, food-borne and other infectious diseases (including typhoid, hepatitis, leptospirosis, tuberculosis, measles and mumps) are common, with more serious outbreaks occurring from time to time.
To minimise the risk of food poisoning or water-borne disease:
- boil all drinking water (bottled water is safe to drink)
- avoid ice cubes
- avoid raw and undercooked food
- seek medical advice if you have a fever or are suffering from diarrhoea.
Be aware that illness caused by naturally occurring seafood toxins such as ciguatera, scombroid (histamine fish poisoning) and toxins in shellfish can be a hazard. Seek urgent medical attention if you suspect poisoning.
Where to get help
Depending on what you need, your best option may be to first contact your family, friends, travel agent, travel insurance provider, employer, or airline.
- National emergencies: 911
- Fire and ambulance emergencies: 911
- Criminal issues, contact police: 917
Your travel insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.
For complaints relating to tourism services or products, contact your service provider directly.
You may be able to lodge a complaint with the Consumer Council of Fiji or the Fiji Tourist Police, located at the Fiji Visitors Bureau in Suva.
The Consular services charter explains what the Australian Government can and can't do to assist Australians overseas.
Australian High Commission, Suva
37 Princes Road
Telephone: +679 338 2211
Facsimile: +679 338 2065
Information on opening hours and temporary closures: Australian High Commission.
If you're unable to contact the High Commission in a consular emergency, contact the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305, or 1300 555 135 within Australia.
Natural disasters, severe weather and climate
November to April is cyclone season, but cyclones may occur at other times.
Flooding, landslides and disruptions to infrastructure and essential services may occur. The direction and strength of tropical cyclones can change with little warning.
In the event of an approaching cyclone:
- identify your local shelter (in some areas, adequate shelter from a severe cyclone may not be available for everyone needing it)
- follow the instructions of local authorities
- monitor media and weather reports for latest developments.
Flights in and out of affected areas could be delayed or suspended. Available flights may fill quickly.
Sea ports in the region could also be affected. Review and follow hotel or cruise ship evacuation plans.
Carry travel documents at all times (including passport, photo identification). Secure them in a safe and waterproof location.
Flooding is common in Fiji, particularly in downtown Nadi and the Coral Coast. It can result in road access being cut off, including to the airport. Follow instructions of local authorities.
Earthquakes and tsunamis
Fiji is subject to earthquakes. Tsunamis can also occur. Be alert to warnings as a tsunami can arrive within minutes of a nearby tremor or earthquake occurring.
Consult your accommodation provider about evacuation plans in the event of a tsunami warning. Follow instructions of local authorities.