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While some batteries may be available to purchase on board, please bring extras if your personal dive equipment may require a unique size. Because of the remote locations in which our vessels operate, there is limited or no access to battery recycling facilities. To help us with responsible tourism we kindly request you bring home your own spent batteries to be recycled or disposed of properly. Alternatively, consider using rechargeable batteries as there are plenty of sockets to plug in a charger on board.
With effect from 19th March 2020, passengers who are not residents of French Polynesia are not permitted to enter the country.
Please bear these restrictions in mind when making your travel arrangements, and let us know if you have any questions.
We are following all governmental advice & guidelines from each destination we operate in. As always, our crew will be respecting good hygiene and we are following recommendations from the WHO on prevention of transmission. The full link can be found here: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public
Measures taken will also be included in your initial briefing onboard. We also encourage guests to frequently clean and disinfect regulator mouthpieces and masks and to avoid sharing of these unless there is an emergency.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, please visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
The U.S. Department of State website, www.travel.state.gov/content/travel.html also has essential travel advice and tips for North Americans.
Beer, wine and a selection of spirits and cocktails are available for purchase on board the M/V French Polynesia Master.
No children under the age of 16 (unless full charter) and 16 – 18 year olds must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Guests are advised to bring with them T-shirts, shorts, swimwear, sensible footwear for any island visits, as well as long trousers / skirt / sarong and pullover / jacket for cooler nights.
The following equipment is available on board the M/V French Polynesia Master for rental. The use of a dive computer is compulsory on the M/V French Polynesia Master.
– Aqualung BCD
– Mask / snorkel
– Dive computer
Diving regulations within French Polynesia differ slightly from many areas of the world. Please note that Open Water divers are limited to 18m, Advanced Open Water and Rescue divers (or equivalent) and above are limited to 30m maximum depth, regardless of whether you carry the Deep Diver Specialty. There are regular checks by the authorities that these limits are being maintained so our guides will be very strict with them. In connection with this, you will be asked to sign this Diver Agreement and relevant Waiver(s) upon boarding.
Diving in French Polynesia can be challenging, even for the experienced diver. As such, we highly recommend our guests to be qualified to a min. of Advanced Open Water level with a minimum of 50 logged dives, preferably with some experience with diving in current, and holding a Nitrox certification.
Guests on board the M/V French Polynesia Master will have a choice of International and local cuisine. All food is served in the dining area as a buffet spread.
Our crew are rigorously trained in emergency management procedures. You will be given a thorough boat briefing upon boarding the vessel. Additional emergency equipment on board our vessels include automated life rafts, Personal Locator Beacons (or Personal EPIRBs), satellite communication and emergency pumps.
In addition, divers can opt to rent a Surface Safety Kit on board. The kits include visible surface markers, a dive alert air-horn and high lumen strobe light.
Smoking is permitted only in designated outdoor areas.
All special dietary requirements, whether allergy or simply personal preference, can be catered to. Please inform us prior to arrival to ensure there are plenty of dishes to suit your needs.
Crew gratuities are not included in your package. Tips are at your discretion; should you feel that the crew on board have gone above and beyond in making your trip as memorable and comfortable as possible, tips would be greatly appreciated. Your cruise director will provide you with an envelope that you can place your tips into, which will then be divided equally amongst the crew including captain and dive guides.
All linens and towels are provided on board. Hairdryers will be provided in your cabin. Shower gel will be provided, however you should bring any additional beauty products you may require such as shampoo and sunscreen on board with you.
Generally, you will not need a visa to enter French Polynesia. French Polynesia operates a visa exemption scheme for several European Union countries. To find out if you need a visa to enter Tahiti, please visit the Tahiti embassy/consulate website at www.tahititourisme.com/en-us/travel-planner/tahiti-visa-requirements/
Yellow fever certificate requirements – check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s HealthTravelPro website.
Transit Via the United States – ESTA or Visas
If you are travelling via the United States, you will likely need to apply for an ESTA under the Visa Waiver Program or acquire a US visa.
IMPORTANT: From 1 April 2016, all travellers wishing to enter the US under the VWP will need to hold a passport with an integrated chip (an ePassport).
Your passport should be valid for at least 3 to 6 months (validity period is dependent upon nationality, so please check) beyond the period that you intend to stay in French Polynesia.
Please visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/french-polynesia/entry-requirements for the most up to date advice.
It is your responsibility to ensure that you have had the required vaccines for the countries you are visiting. Please contact your health adviser or pharmacy, at least 8 weeks prior to departure, for advice if you are unsure which vaccinations you require. We are unable to give specific advice on vaccines or other medical precautions as this information should be provided by a medical professional. Further travel health advice can be found at:
Take appropriate precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitos and other insects, see www.travelhealthpro.org.uk/factsheet/38/insect-and-tick-bite-avoidance.
If you have a severe allergy, please inform us before you travel.
Climate in French Polynesia is tropical, but moderate. Very humid. The average ambient temperature is 27°C (80°F). Summer is from November through April, with a warmer and more humid climate and winter is from May through October, when the climate is slightly cooler and drier.
The local currency in French Polynesia is the French Pacific Franc (CFP or XPF). You can exchange EUR or USD against a commission at the exchange office located outside the arrival hall of Papeete international airport or at exchange offices located on the main islands (Tahiti, Bora Bora and Moorea). Banks do not provide this service. Large international chain hotels also provide this service against a commission and most of the main islands will have several working ATMs in case you want to withdraw cash. Most of the remote atolls (Tuamotu, the Austral and Gambier group, etc.) have no banking facilities, no exchange service and have very few ATMs. They also rarely accept credit/debit card payments and cash payments in other currency than XPF. Therefore, we recommend bringing cash USD or Euro and changing at the airport to cash CFP or alternatively withdraw the cash you may need for your stay in the remote islands when possible. In Tuamotu, exchange facilities are rare and hotels, pensions, restaurants and shops will accept cash CFP only.
With effect from 1st October 2019, all guests travelling via Auckland International Airport are required to hold a transit visa or NZeTA (New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority). Some travellers may also need to pay an International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) depending on their travel plans.
For further information, please contact your nearest New Zealand embassy, or refer to the New Zealand immigration website: https://www.immigration.govt.nz/new-zealand-visas/
On board M/V French Polynesia Master there are both 220V with 2 round pin European style sockets. If required, 110V US style sockets can be made available. Universal adaptors are available, however guests are recommended to bring their own to ensure that you have the amount necessary. French Polynesia uses 220 volts and they use one main type of plug (type C/E). The most common is the plug with 2 parallel flat pins.
Current studies show that you should wait at least 24 hours after multiple repetitive dives before you fly. Please have this in mind before you book your onwards international or domestic flights.
In French Polynesia, medical care is generally very satisfactory and medical infrastructure is comparable to what you would find in most developed countries. The most modern facilities are located in Tahiti and mostly concentrated in Papeete.
The official languages are French and Tahitian with French being the most widely spoken language by far. The population is 45% protestant, 34% catholic and the final 21% consists of the Mormon Church, Seventh-Day Adventist Church and the Sanitos.
French Polynesia is a set of islands that is an overseas country attached to France located in the South Pacific Ocean. Passport holders of the European Union, Andorra, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Monaco and Norway only need a valid passport for entry. Passport holders of most Western and Asian countries are exempt from visa requirements for stays of up to 90 days, however, we always advise our guests to check for updates and changes at France Diplomatie. Please make sure that your passport has validity of at least 3-6 months depending on nationality beyond the period you intend to stay in French Polynesia. If you are travelling with medication please ensure to bring your physician’s prescription with you.