LEGAL-About Polynesian ISLANDS

The intent here is to present some general facts about French Polynesian Islands in general.


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ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: A passport is required
Visas are not required for stays up to one month. For further information about entry requirements, travelers,
particularly those planning to enter by sea, may contact the French Embassy at 4101 Reservoir Road, N.W, Washington, D.C. 20007, telephone (202)

CRIME INFORMATION: Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, occurs. The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported
immediately to the local police, and the nearest U.S. embassy. Useful information on safeguarding valuables and protecting personal security is available in
the Department of State pamphlet, A Safe Trip Abroad. It can be obtained from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office,
Washington, D.C. 20402 or via the Internet at

CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While in a foreign country, a U.S. citizen is subject to that country's laws and regulations, which sometimes differ significantly from
those in the United States and do not afford the protections available to the individual under U.S. law. Penalties for breaking the law can be more severe than
in the United States for similar offenses. Persons violating the law, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or imprisoned. Penalties for possession,
use, or trafficking in illegal drugs are strict, and convicted offenders can expect jail sentences and fines.

MEDICAL FACILITIES: Medical treatment is generally good on the major islands, but is limited in areas that are more remote or less populated. Patients with
emergencies or with serious illnesses are often referred to facilities on Tahiti for treatment. In Papeete, the capital of Tahiti, two major hospitals, as well as
several private clinics, provide 24-hour medical service.

MEDICAL INSURANCE: Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate cash payments for health services. The Medicare/Medicaid program does not provide
payment for medical services outside the United States. U.S. medical insurance is not always valid outside the United States. Travelers have found that, in
some cases, supplemental medical insurance with specific overseas coverage, including provision for medical evacuation, has proven useful. 

OTHER HEALTH INFORMATION: Helpful information on medical emergencies abroad is provided in the Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs'
brochure Medical Information for Americans Traveling Abroad, available via the Consular Affairs homepage at and the autofax service
at (202) 647-3000. Information on vaccinations and other health precautions may be obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's
international travelers hotline at telephone 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747), via the CDC autofax service at 1-888-CDC-FAXX (1-888-232-3299), or by
visiting the CDC Internet home page at

AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: Civil aviation operations in French Polynesia fall under the jurisdiction of French authorities. The U.S. Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of France's civil aviation authority as Category 1 -- in compliance with international aviation safety
standards for oversight of France's air carrier operations. For further information, travelers may contact the Department of Transportation within the U.S. at
1-800-322-7873, or visit the FAA Internet home page at The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) separately assesses some
foreign air carriers for suitability as official providers of air services. For information regarding the DOD policy on specific carriers, travelers may contact the
Pentagon at (703) 697-7288.

ROAD SAFETY: While most major roads are paved, many secondary roads are not. Traffic is brisk, and all types of vehicles and pedestrians jockey for space
on narrow streets. Tourists should exercise caution when driving, particularly at night.

REGISTRATION/EMBASSY LOCATION: There is no U.S. Embassy nor diplomatic post on Tahiti, nor on any of the other French Polynesian islands.
Assistance for U.S. citizens is provided by the U.S. Embassy in Suva, Fiji, which is located at 31 Loftus Street, P.O. Box 218, in the capital city of Suva,
telephone 679-314-466, fax 679-300-081.

Americans living in or visiting French Polynesia are encouraged to register with the U.S. Embassy in Suva, Fiji, and to obtain up-to-date information on travel
and security in French Polynesia. Given the distance between French Polynesia and Fiji, the U.S. Embassy's ability to provide on-the-spot service is limited.


This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated September 9, 1996, to add a section on aviation safety oversight, and to update the sections on entry
requirements, medical facilities and other health information.