Pekoa International airport is the main airport and is located just 6km from Luganville. Currently, Pekoahas at least two flights a day from Port Vila and is the main feeder airport for access to the northern islands. Air Vanuatu has direct flights from Brisbane and Sydney, Australia, to Pekoa airport in Espiritu Santo.
Air Vanuatu: www.airvanuatu.com
There are numerous inter-island boats that provide service to Espiritu Santo. Most are cargo ships so don't expect too much in the way of passenger service. Local boat movements are broadcast daily on Vanuatu's FM Radio station at IO:30AM and again at 7:30PM. Broadcasts are in Bislama. Ask the locals to listen and translate for you.
Lenakel (Tanna), Port Vila (Efate), Luganville (Espiritu Santo) and Sola (Banks Group) are the only legal ports of entry. Yachts seeking clearance in or clearance out of Sola and Lenakel must pay an Outer Island clearance charge of 3,000 VT per clearance. Port dues are also charged.
Department of Customs
PMB 08, Luganville.
Phone: (678) 36225
Fax: (678) 36380
Ports & Harbour Dept.
Tel: +678 36033
Email: [email protected]
Departure tax at the International Airport is VUV 2,500 per person (over the age of 12 years) and VUV 400 for domestic Air Vanuatu Service tax. Both these passenger service charges are included in airfares.
A separate domestic departure fee of 200vt has recently been added, for visitors and locals from any Shefa and Sanma Province domestic airport. This applies to every leg where a passenger departs from the following domestic airports: Bauerfield - Port Vila, Siwo Airport - Emae, Pele Airport -Tongoa, Valesdir Airport - Epi, Laman Bay Airport - Epi, Pekoa Airport - Espiritu Santo. The 200vt is not included in airfares but is paid separately.
Visas are not required for most countries: (All Commonwealth countries, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Fiji, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Philippines, Taiwan, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland and U.S.A.).
However you must have a valid, ongoing or return airline ticket and your Passport must be valid for six months beyond your intended stay.
All food, fruits, animal products and plants must be declared upon entry into Vanuatu. Many such items are allowed, though some require a valid quarantine certificate from the country of origin.
Most 'clean' (smooth) wooden artefacts, shells, even some grass skirts and woven baskets can be taken into Australia and New Zealand (countries with the most stringent quarantine systems in the world). Some artefacts require a Quarantine certificate which is readily issued in Vanuatu and accepted in most foreign countries, but not Australia. When in doubt, declare it upon entry.
Although Vanuatu is a safe destination, many tours, especially to outer islands, may have some associated risks. This means that occasionally domestic flights are delayed due to poor weather conditions and scuba dives cancelled due to cyclones etc. Therefore we strongly recommend taking out travel insurance prior to arriving in Vanuatu.