Everything you need to know about French Polynesia reopening

Jul 24, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

If you’ve been dreaming about stunning lagoons and overwater bungalows, you’re in luck because French Polynesia officially reopened on July 15, 2020. The island nation implemented a 14-day quarantine period for international travelers back in March, a measure that appears to have been successful. No active COVID-19 cases have been reported since May 29, clearing the way for the island nation to reopen, and guests can visit without the 14-day quarantine.

But before you book your ticket and arrange for a pet sitter, there are a few restrictions you need to be aware of.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

What’s required for travel to French Polynesia

If you plan on traveling to French Polynesia in July, you need to show proof of a negative COVID-19 (RT-PCR) test taken within 72 hours of departure. This test needs to be shown at check-in to the airline that’s taking you to French Polynesia, and you will not be allowed to board the flight without it.

Travelers are also required to fill out a medical registration and submit a printout of it to the airline along with their negative COVID-19 PCR test.

Additionally, all incoming travelers (residents excluded) must provide proof of international travel insurance. Luckily, credit card travel insurance satisfies this requirement. Use a card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card to pay for your airfare and hotel, then provide a copy of the card’s Guide to Benefits as proof of coverage.

Related: When will international travel return? A country-by-country guide to coronavirus recovery

What to expect during the flight

Passengers traveling to French Polynesia will be required to abide by IATA sanitary measures, including wearing a mask. You’ll also need to sign a statement of commitment, agreeing to follow sanitary measures and self-report symptoms.

As is the norm with most customs forms, you’ll also need to fill out a form containing your hotel and personal contact information. Passengers will also be given a traceability form that should account all the places they have visited while in French Polynesia.

What to expect on arrival

Upon arrival, travelers will be given packages that contain oral and nasal self-swab tests. The test has to be taken and returned four days after arrival for travelers ages six and up.

All travelers over 11 are advised to wear a mask while in public places throughout their stay and abide by specific sanitary measures. It is mandatory to wear a mask in taxis, planes, ferries and buses. If you do exhibit symptoms during your stay, you must self-report and self-isolate in your room until further instruction from local emergency operators.

What about cruises?

The tourism board has indicated that cruise ships that are currently in Tahiti would resume operations in early July. Cruises will only be domestic for now as guidelines are being developed for international cruising.

How to get there

If you’re itching to travel to French Polynesia when the border reopens on July 15, there are lots of options for getting there. Be sure to check out our guide on the best way to get to Tahiti using points and miles. The following airlines will be resuming flights:

  • Aircalin
  • Air France
  • Air New Zealand
  • Air Tahiti
  • Air Tahiti Nui
  • French Bee
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • United

Bottom line

Some of you may be wondering whether it’s safe to travel internationally in the midst of a pandemic. That’s a personal choice that only you can make. The government of French Polynesia has implemented quite a few regulations to ensure the safety of visitors and locals alike. However, nothing is guaranteed and there are still risks associated with travel.

Featured photo by Summer Hull/The Points Guy

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.