COVID-19 Travel
May 28, 2021

COVID-19 Travel Guidance for U.S. Citizens

COVID-19 Alert
July 21, 2021

Update on U.S. Passport Operations

International Travel

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Country Information

Vanuatu

Vanuatu
Republic of Vanuatu
Do not travel to Vanuatu due to COVID-19.

Do not travel to Vanuatu due to COVID-19.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has not issued a Travel Health Notice for Vanuatu due to COVID-19, indicating an unknown level of COVID-19 in the country. Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine. Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC's specific recommendations for vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers.

There are restrictions in place, including third-country transit requirements, affecting U.S. citizen entry and exit in Vanuatu. The Embassy is unable to provide some routine services for U.S. citizens. Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 and related restrictions and conditions in Vanuatu.

Read the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Vanuatu:

Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

... [READ MORE]

Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:


6months.

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:


1 page per stamp.

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:


Not required for stays under 30 days.

VACCINATIONS:


None.

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:


Amounts over VUV 1,000,000 (USD 10,000) in local or foreign currency equivalent must be declared.

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:


Amounts over VUV 1,000,000 (USD 10,000) in local or foreign currency equivalent must be declared.

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Port Moresby

The Embassy maintains no permanent presence in Vanuatu.
Douglas Street, (adjacent to the Bank of Papua New Guinea)
Port Moresby, NCD, 121
Papua New Guinea
Telephone
: +(675) 308-2100
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(675) 7200-9439
Fax: +(675) 321-1593
Email: 

Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Vanuatu for information on U.S. – Vanuatu’s relations.

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Please visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on entry/ exit requirements related to COVID-19 in Vanuatu. 

U.S. citizens need a valid passport, onward ticket, and proof of sufficient funds in order to enter Vanuatu. Tourist visas are not required for stays of up to 30 days. If you plan to stay longer than 30 days, you may apply for a standard residence permit or for an extension of stay for up to 120 days at the Immigration Office. You should do so before your initial 30-day period expires. Please contact the Principal Immigration Officer, Immigration Department, at (+678) 22354.

For further information on entry requirements, particularly if you are planning to enter on a private sailing vessel, please visit the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Vanuatu to the United Nations website, 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400B, New York, NY 10017, Telephone: (+1) 212 661 4303; fax: (+1) 212 422 3427, (+1) 212 661 5544. The Mission may also be contacted via e-mail at vanunmis@aol.com.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Vanuatu.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Public Safety: Civil disorder in Vanuatu is relatively rare; however, you should avoid public demonstrations and/or political rallies if they occur.

Crime: Although violent crime is relatively rare in Vanuatu, there is always a risk that you could be a victim of theft, burglary, sexual harassment, or sexual assault. Take reasonable precautions to avoid undue risk, especially in tourist areas. Women should avoid going out alone at night or to isolated locations. The Embassy has also received some reports of ATM or credit card number theft after a card was used in Vanuatu. While this does not appear to be widespread, travelers are advised to monitor their accounts after using their ATM or credit cards in Vanuatu for any unauthorized activity.

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Victims of Crime: U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault should contact the U.S. Embassy in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea for assistance at (+675) 308 2100.

Report crimes to the local police at 1111 or non-emergency (+678) 2222 in Port Vila and (+678) 36222 in Santo, and contact the U.S. Embassy in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea at (+675) 308 2100. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion
  • Provide a list of attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights homes
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport.

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence should contact the Embassy for assistance.

Tourism: The tourism industry is unevenly regulated, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities do not commonly occur. Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the host government or by recognized authorities in the field. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is typically available only in/near major cities. First responders are generally unable to access areas outside of major cities and to provide urgent medical treatment. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. 

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Customs: Vanuatu customs authorities may enforce strict regulations on importing or exporting items such as firearms, certain prescription drugs, wooden artifacts, exotic animals, food items, and sexually explicit material. Other products may be subject to quarantine. For specific information regarding customs requirements, contact the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Vanuatu to the United Nations, 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400B, New York, NY 10017, Telephone: (212) 661-4303; fax: (212) 422-3427, (212) 661-5544.

Natural Disasters: The United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) The United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) has consistently ranked Vanuatu number one on the World Risk Index for its many different types of natural disasters and its difficulties in recovering from them.  Visitors need to be aware of disasters which can occur at any time.

Cyclones: Cyclones can occur suddenly in Vanuatu. Cyclone season usually lasts from November to April, and severe flooding, landslides, and disruptions to services may occur. Local media and hotels will convey cyclone alerts issued by local authorities.

Volcanoes/Earthquakes: Vanuatu is subject to volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and tsunamis. If you plan to visit volcanic areas, contact the Department of Geology and Mines at (677) 22423 or the Vanuatu Tourism Office at tourism@vanuatu.com.vu prior to traveling to areas where volcanic activity may occur. Detailed information about earthquakes is available from the National Earthquake Information Center of the United States Geological Survey. If a natural disaster occurs, follow the advice of local authorities. Visit the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards page to obtain current climate advisories, including volcano activity levels All of Ambae Island and parts of Ambrym Island have been evacuated due to high and on-going volcanic activity. Avoid areas being evacuated.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.

LGBTI Travelers: Same-sex sexual relations are criminalized in Vanuatu. However, there are no known incidents of the prosecution, targeting, or harassment of consenting adults. Vanuatu is a conservative country, and we recommend that you avoid public displays of affection. See our LGBTI Travel Information page and the Vanuatu Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: There is no law specifically prohibiting discrimination against persons with physical, sensory, intellectual, or mental disabilities. There are no special programs to assist persons with disabilities and no legislation mandating access to buildings, information, and communications. In practice, most buildings in Vanuatu are not accessible to persons with disabilities, and disabled persons often rely on assistance from friends and family.

Recreational Diving: Diving in Vanuatu has the potential to be dangerous. We suggest the following tips for visitors who plan to dive while in Vanuatu:

  • Verify that your dive operator is currently certified through one of the international diving associations (PADI, NAUI, BSAC, CMAS, etc.).
  • Ensure that rental equipment is in good working condition, with up-to-date inspection stamps.
  • Make sure your equipment fits properly.
  • Postpone or cancel diving activity if any equipment is faulty.
  • Try to remain in pairs or in a group that includes a dive guide.
  • Determine your level of training before engaging in deep water or wreck dives.
  • Confirm that dive operators have adequate onsite emergency equipment and diver-recall systems.
  • Know that the nearest hyperbaric chamber might be hours away, or require a plane flight. There is one hyperbaric facility in Port Vila, Vanuatu, far from some of the more remote dive sites. Due to the high costs for decompression services and associated emergency transportation, divers are strongly advised to obtain adequate medical evacuation and diver’s insurance.
  • Please report any unsafe conditions or diving practices to either the certifying diving association or the local authorities.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers

Health

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

Local customary law is observed in Vanuatu especially in rural areas. Disputes based in customary law are generally resolved through a compensation-based settlement mediated by law enforcement or law government officials.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Customs: Vanuatu customs authorities may enforce strict regulations on importing or exporting items such as firearms, certain prescription drugs, wooden artifacts, exotic animals, food items, and sexually explicit material. Other products may be subject to quarantine. For specific information regarding customs requirements, contact the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Vanuatu to the United Nations, 800 Second Avenue, Suite 400B, New York, NY 10017, Telephone: (212) 661-4303; fax: (212) 422-3427, (212) 661-5544.

Natural Disasters: Vanuatu is among the most natural disaster prone countries in the world. Visitors should be aware that natural disasters can occur at any time with little or not notice. For general information on disaster preparedness visit the Department of State Natural Disaster webpage.

Cyclones: Cyclones can occur suddenly in Vanuatu. Cyclone season usually lasts from November to April. Damaging winds, rough seas, intense rain and flash flooding, landslides, and disruptions to services may occur. Local media and hotels will convey cyclone alerts issued by local authorities.

 

Volcanoes/Earthquakes: Vanuatu is frequently subject to volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and tsunamis. If you plan to visit volcanic areas, contact the Department of Geology and Mines at (677) 22423 or the Vanuatu Tourism Office at prior to traveling to areas where volcanic activity may occur.

Detailed information about earthquakes is available from the National Earthquake Information Center of the United States Geological Survey. If a natural disaster occurs, follow the advice of local authorities. Visit the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards page to obtain current climate advisories, including volcano activity levels. All of Ambae Island and parts of Ambrym Island have been evacuated permanently due to regular volcanic activity. Avoid these areas and others under evacuation orders.

 

Faith-Based Travelers: See the following webpages for details:

 

LGBTI Travelers: Same-sex sexual relations are criminalized in Vanuatu. See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities:

The law in Vanuatu does not prohibit discrimination against persons with physical, sensory, intellectual, or mental disabilities. Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is not as prevalent as in the United States. Expect accessibility to be limited in public transportation, lodging, communication/information, and general infrastructure. Accessibility is generally more prevalent in the capital city, Port Vila. The availability of rental, repair, replacement parts for aids/equipment/devices, or service providers, such as sign language interpreters or personal assistants is extremely limited.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Travel by road can be hazardous. Always use your seatbelt. Roads are generally narrow and in poor repair. Only the capital city of Port Vila and the town of Luganville have consistently paved roads, which have a maximum speed limit of 30 miles per hour (50 kilometers per hour). On all roads, give way to traffic coming from the right, and to traffic coming from the left at roundabouts. To avoid trespassing, seek permission from local landowners before accessing non-public areas, including beaches. Some landowners may charge a fee for access.

Traffic Laws: If you are involved in a road accident, local law requires you to stop and stay at the scene until the police arrive. If a crowd gathers after an accident and you feel threatened, proceed directly to a police station. Incidents of individuals being harmed by crowds as a result of a traffic accident are rare.

Many local drivers are not well trained and do not follow basic traffic laws. Be aware of drivers under the influence of alcohol, pedestrians who are not aware of traffic, and children running into the road. Drivers have very limited visibility due to a lack of roadway illumination. Police control of traffic is limited, even in Port Vila. When driving, be alert at all times. Street signs and traffic lights are scarce or may not be in working order. 

Public Transportation: Taxi services are widely available in Port Vila and Luganville and are generally safe. Public bus and mini-bus services are also available, but safety standards may vary widely and information on routes may not be available in a published form. Incidences of petty theft are generally rare by are more frequent on public transportation.

See our Road Safety page for more information.

Contact Vanuatu’s national tourist office or the Vanuatu Police Force Traffic Section for more information on road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Vanuatu, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the Government of Vanuatu’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Vanuatu should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website, and the NGA broadcast warnings.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: July 8, 2021

Travel Advisory Levels

Information for Vaccinated Travelers

The CDC's latest guidance on international travel for vaccinated people can be found here.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Port Moresby
Douglas Street, (adjacent to the Bank of Papua New Guinea),
Port Moresby, NCD, 121
Papua New Guinea
Telephone
+(675) 308-2100
Emergency
+(675) 7200-9439
Fax
+(675) 321-1593

Vanuatu Map