Due to the spread of the coronavirus, the authorities of Tuvalu have, from March 20, introduced an emergency situation which has so far been announced to last for 14 days. For more information about coronavirus, see the section Health.
Most trips to Tuvalu are completed without any special problems. In March 2015, the cyclone Pam caused major damage especially to Tuvalu’s outer islands. Reconstruction work will take time.
Tourists are wary of large crowds and congregations and follow changes in the political situation. Safety standards poor especially in risk sports and when transporting by boat between islands. Therefore, consult locally on safe areas for swimming and other water sports. The hurricane season is from November to April.
It is recommended to make copies of passports, tickets and credit cards when traveling to Tuvalu.
The closest Norwegian consulate is to Fiji. Norway also has consulates in New Zealand; one in Wellington and one in Auckland. Responsible Norwegian Embassy is the Norwegian embassy in Canberra. The risk of terrorist incidents for Tuvalu is considered low. Homosexuality is prohibited and carries severe penalties. There is a minimum sentence of seven years in prison for sexual intercourse between adult men. There are severe penalties for drug offenses.
There is generally little crime at Tuvalu. Theft of valuables such as cash, jewelry, camera, mobile phone etc. are the most common criminal acts aimed at tourists.
It is recommended to make copies of passports, tickets, bank cards, etc., and keep them separately from the original documents. It is not recommended to keep credit cards, cash and travelers checks together. Spread the risk so that you will not be able to pay in case of theft.
There is left-hand traffic at Tuvalu – on the few roads (a total of eight km) that exist.
- Countryaah: Vaiaku is the capital of Tuvalu. Check to find information of population, geography, history, and economy about the capital city.
Since 1990, Tuvalu has been increasingly exposed to tropical storms and cyclones. Therefore, it is recommended that travelers follow international weather updates, especially during the hurricane season which is from November to April.
Cyclone and storm information is also available from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, US Navy, US National Weather Service Forecast Office, the Fiji Meteorological Service, the World Meteorological Organization Severe Weather Information Center, the Humanitarian Early Warning Service and the National Hurricane Center.
Tuvalu may be affected by earthquakes. Look for messages and advice from local authorities both before, during and after an emergency. General precautions for natural disasters in Oceania can be found here.
Local emergency numbers are as follows: Police 911, fire department (+688) 20726, ambulance (+688) 20749.
In crisis and emergency situations, the public is urged to contact the Norwegian Embassy in Canberra on tel: +61 2 6270 5700 or by e-mail: [email protected]
Outside the embassy’s opening hours, the public can contact the UD’s 24-hour operating center on tel: +47 23 95 00 00 or by e-mail: [email protected] The
Ministry of Foreign Affairs encourages anyone who goes to countries outside Europe and North America, to register at reiseregistrering.no. Travel registration is also recommended for anyone who is going to be abroad for an extended period of time, including students and other residents.
In a crisis situation where there is reason to believe that family and friends may be concerned, the embassy encourages Norwegians in the affected areas to contact family members in Norway. Family members can also contact the local authorities in the affected areas.
Please note that entry regulations may change. The Foreign Service is not responsible if the following information on entry regulations or visa requirements is changed at short notice. It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure that travel documents are valid for entry and to familiarize themselves with the current entry rules for each country.
Norwegian citizens do not need a visa for stays of up to 30 days at Tuvalu. You must pay the departure tax upon departure. Passports must be valid for up to six months after the scheduled entry date.
A tourist visa is issued on arrival, and it is possible to have the visa extended by up to three months. Although Norwegian citizens are visa-free to a country, only passports that are approved as identification documents. It is the responsibility of the traveler to ensure that travel documents, any visa, etc. are valid.
When leaving, a departure tax of AUD 30 must be paid at the airport. For questions about visas and immigration, you can contact the immigration authorities at Tuvalu, tel: (+688) 20240.
Coronavirus (covid-19): Due to the prevalence of the virus, the Tuvalu authorities have, from March 20, introduced an emergency situation which is currently scheduled to last for 14 days. Additional information and updates can be found on Tuvalu’s Facebook pages. It is the authorities at Tuvalu who are responsible for updating the websites.
Norwegian travelers should also keep abreast of the development of the coronavirus, as well as keep up to date with guidance and instructions from the authorities at Tuvalu.
You can find more information and guidance from the Norwegian health authorities on the website of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. See also UD’s answers to frequently asked questions about travel and coronavirus.
When traveling to Tuvalu you should be careful with mosquito protection; Outbreaks of dengue fever may occur. which is a viral disease transmitted by mosquitoes. They sting, unlike mosquitoes that transmit malaria, usually during the day. Therefore, avoid mosquito bites with suitable clothing, mosquitoes and mosquito nets. For more information on dengue fever, please see the World Health Organization factsheet on dengue fever. There are no malaria bugs on Tuvalu.
Tropical dips can be avoided by lubricating cuts and scrubs with antibiotic ointment, and covering with plastics. Treatment services in hospitals are limited and in severe cases evacuation to Fiji or Australia will be necessary.
Please refer to the recommendations of the National Institute of Public Health regarding vaccinations when traveling abroad. It has happened that the outer islands have had some small outbreaks of cholera and dysentery.
Normal care should be taken to avoid HIV infection.
The hospital treatment offered at Tuvalu is limited. There is a hospital at Funafuti (the capital), and the outer islands have trained nurses. In severe cases, evacuation to Fiji or Australia must be expected. Therefore, make sure you have good travel insurance and check carefully what the insurance covers before departure, especially regarding medical evacuation by air/helicopter.
There are no rivers, lakes or groundwater at Tuvalu. The drinking water comes from rainwater collection and must be boiled before drinking.
Tuvalu is nine to eleven hours ahead of Norway depending on summer and winter time. Credit cards can be used at some hotels and in some major stores. Withdrawing money from Tuvalu can be problematic.
Power uses 240 volts and three-point plugs. The area code for telephone calls from Norway to Tuvalu is +688. Local numbers have five digits, the first two of which indicate the local area code.
Tuvalu’s residents dress informally, but are sensitive to how women dress. It may seem insulting to walk lightly off the beach, and it is recommended that women wear clothing that covers their shoulders and knees. Topless sunbathing is not accepted. English and Tuvalu are official languages. It is not common to give tips.
Credit cards can be used at some hotels and in some major stores. It can be problematic to withdraw money as Tuvalu only has one bank, the National Bank of Tuvalu, located at Funafuti Airport. In the outer islands, the “Island Executive Officer” serves as a bank, but they usually have limited opportunities to help you.
Opening hours are for banks 10 am – 2 pm Monday-Thursday and 9 am – 1 pm Friday. Shops are usually open from 6am to 8pm.