Fiji hopes to open to international travel by Nov. 1
Fiji is a dream destination for many travelers, but unfortunately, it’s been closed for tourism since March 2020.
But there are some promising signs that Fiji is ready to welcome travelers again, as Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama announced that it planned to reopen by Nov. 1.
“That’s the target we’ve set now, and it bases itself on the success we’ve had with the vaccination campaign,” Fiji’s tourism minister said according to the Fiji Broadcasting Commission.
The South Pacific archipelago of more than 300 islands said it intended to reopen in November based on Qantas Airways’ plan to restart international service in December. Details are still scant about what travelers will need to enter the country, but here’s what you need to know about getting to (and staying in) Fiji when it reopens this fall.
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Currently, the only way to visit Fiji is by booking a private island -- which starts at $9,600 per night with a minimum of 14 nights -- or owning a private yacht. But with the announcement that Fiji will reopen for travel this fall, travelers are likely curious about visiting.
Right now, it’s unclear what requirements Fiji will impose on foreign tourists, such as a vaccine or testing mandate, when it does reopen.
But it will likely impose testing or vaccine requirements like other Oceanic islands due to its remote location. Other places, such as American Samoa, now require proof of vaccination for entry. 97.5% of Fijians have received at least one dose and 61.9% are fully vaccinated, according to recent data.
Fiji has been closed to tourism since the beginning of the pandemic, and there are no international flights into the country right now. Fiji has had a strict lockdown in place since the start of the pandemic but has seen cases rise exponentially in recent weeks. The government has reported 46,000 cases and nearly 500 deaths. Half of the deaths have been in the last month, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
The U.S. State Department’s advisory for Fiji is Level 4: Do Not Travel and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s advisory is Level 4: High Level of COVID-19.
How to get to Fiji
Fiji is served by Nadi Airport (NAN), and there are several nonstop flights from the U.S. on Fiji Airways. And if you’re flying between Los Angeles (LAX) and Nadi, you’re in for a treat as the airline flies a relatively new Airbus A350-900 on this route, offering a gorgeous 1-2-1 lie-flat business class.
Unfortunately, tickets aren’t cheap at all -- even if you’re flying economy. Flights between Los Angeles, San Francisco (SFO) or Honolulu (HNL) frequently cost well over $1,000 round-trip.
But the good news is that there are a few options to use your miles. If you have American Airlines AAdvantage miles, you can use them to book award flights to Fiji -- but you’d better have a ton on hand.
American charges 80,000 miles round-trip for economy flights or a whopping 160,000 miles round-trip in business class from the continental U.S. Things get a little cheaper if you want to fly out of Honolulu, as round-trip prices drop to 75,000 miles in economy and 130,000 miles in business.
If you’re short on miles, one of the easiest ways to earn AAdvantage miles is through cobranded credit cards, both via sign-up bonuses and everyday spending. Both Citi and Barclays currently issue American credit cards, giving you six different options with different welcome bonuses and point-earning abilities on cards such as the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® and Barclaycard AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®.
The information for the AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Alaska Mileage Plan members can book Fiji awards for 40,000 miles in economy or 55,000 in business. Alaska Airlines has two co-branded credit cards with Bank of America if you’re low on miles: Alaska Airlines Visa® credit card and Alaska Airlines Visa® Business card.
Where to stay in Fiji
Unlike some countries in the South Pacific, there are plenty of options if you’re using hotel points. Fiji has several major hotel brands, including Marriott Bonvoy, Hilton Honors and Intercontinental.
Marriott Bonvoy properties include four category 5 hotels, including the Fiji Marriott Resort Momi Bay, which start at 35,000 points per night for standard pricing. There’s also the category 7 Sheraton Denarau Villas, which starts at 60,000 points per night.
If you’re low on Bonvoy points, you have several ways to top up your account, including opening a co-branded credit card such as the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card or transferring points earned from a card such as The Platinum Card® from American Express.
Hilton doesn’t have an award chart, so the number of points required for a free night varies depending on the hotel, time of year and room rate. Hilton offers the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Fiji, which starts at 60,000 points a night, and the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Hotel Fiji - Sonaisali Island, which starts at 32,000 for December 2021 dates.
The chain has several credit cards for the casual Hilton Honors traveler, such as the Hilton Honors American Express Card or the Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card.
Finally, IHG offers four hotels ranging from the luxury InterContinental Fiji Resort to the Holiday Inn Suva. Rates range from 21,000 to 56,000 IHG points. There are two IHG Rewards Club credit cards currently accepting applications: the IHG Rewards Premier Credit Card, which earns up to 26x points total at IHG hotels and resorts, and the no-annual-fee IHG Rewards Traveler Credit Card. This card earns up to 17x points at IHG hotels and resorts.
Updated on 1/18/23.