Everything you need to know before you leave home to travel to our islands, to ensure you have a wonderful stay.
Bring summer clothes, suitable for the beach and for sports, preferably made of cotton. Include a sweater for the evenings, which can be cooler by the lagoon, on cruises or in the mountains.
For your feet: thongs (flip-flops), sandals, trainers or maybe “deck” shoes.
The essentials: swimsuit, sunglasses, hat, “total” sunblock cream (due to the intense glare from the lagoons) and anti-mosquito lotion (can be useful depending on the island and the season). These items are of course available in large stores and specialist shops on Tahiti and the main tourist islands, as well as in hotel shops.
French Polynesia is known for the quality of its health services, thanks to the opening of the new hospital in Tahiti, equipped with the best of facilities, and its network of clinics, private medical surgeries, dispensaries, infirmaries and first-aid posts on each inhabited island (according to the number of inhabitants), backed up by medical transfers to Tahiti in case of emergency.
The currency used in French Polynesia is the CFP franc (international abbreviation: XPF). An interesting feature of this currency is that its exchange rate with the euro never varies and is set at 100 F.CFP = 0.838 Euros (or 1 Euro = 119.33 F.CFP).
The following are accepted: all legal currencies, international credit cards, travellers’ cheques (a commission of approximately 3.5 Euros is charged to exchange these). The international banks on Tahiti and the most visited islands (Banque de Tahiti, Banque de Polynésie, Banque Socredo), have a foreign exchange facility. International hotels also offer this service. Most of the tourist islands have one or more bank agents.
But beware:some atolls in the Tuamotu and the Austral and Gambier Islands have no exchange facilities. At Tahiti-Fa'a'a airport, two foreign exchange offices (Banque de Polynésie and Banque Socredo) are open at the arrival and departure times of international flights.