Understanding Conversion and Currency on Your Fiji Luxury Vacation
Currency and conversion rates may appear a straightforward aspect of a Fiji luxury vacation, and compared to ascertaining some cultural differences, it truly isn’t that complex. However, there is a big difference between researching the conversion rate before you leave and trying to do the calculation throughout your trip.
Of course, at Raiwasa we try to make this process as easy as possible. As an all inclusive property on Taveuni, most, if not all, of your costs are paid up front and quoted in USD. However, your Fiji luxury vacation may include stops on other islands, small side trips, or some unexpected stops around the island. At these moments, it truly helps to have a firm grasp on currency in Fiji and a few tips on hand for how to handle money during international travel.
The Official Currency in Fiji and the U.S. Dollar
Fiji’s official currency is the Fiji dollar. When checking the exchange rate before your Fiji luxury vacation you want to look for the abbreviation FID on exchange markets and online. A good place to find official exchange rates is at Oanda, a currency converter recommended by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service.
You will probably see this currency used at times during your Fiji luxury vacation, including for small souvenir purchase, in the airport, and at beach bars. However, it isn’t the only currency accepted by vendors in Fiji. The U.S. dollar is widely used throughout the county. Most souvenir sellers and restaurants will accept U.S. money at a fair and consistent exchange rate.
Using U.S. Dollars Does Require Prior Planning
No matter where you travel abroad, ATMs can be a major cause of currency complications. First, not all ATMs operate the same or ask the exact some questions. Second, in most destinations you can now see an ATM screen in English, but not always. Third, you may not know how much money to request in a single transaction.
Then there are other unique problems – for example, in Thailand your bankcard is always returned after your cash withdraw and receipt. This is a process familiar to most Americans, but the opposite order for Australians and New Zealanders, who frequently forget their debit card in the machine.
ATMs in Fiji are always in English, which is a huge benefit for most travelers. However, ATMs can be few and far between on the islands and only a select couple of ATM machines will dispense U.S. dollars. If you plan to use U.S. dollars, it’s best to come prepared with cash from your home country or expect the trial and tribulation of finding an open bank during your Fiji luxury vacation.
Once on the islands it is fairly easy to exchange U.S. dollars for Fijian dollars, if you choose. There are plenty of moneychangers in Nadi International Airport, and our team at Raiwasa can help identify the locations giving the most favorable exchange rates at the time of your arrival. As well, there are ATMs located in the airport terminal.
Use of Credit Cards in Fiji
You’ll find that there is better acceptance of credit cards in Fiji than ever before. As in other popular, tropical destinations most hotels, restaurants, and tour agencies accept Visa and Master Card. If you regularly reach for your American Express, it’s worthwhile to bring this card along as many major hotels and bigger restaurants will take it. However, this shouldn’t be your only option for the trip, as you’ll find an equal number of vendors still don’t accept AmEx.
The other problem with credit cards on your Fiji luxury vacation is there are still certain bars, restaurants, souvenir vendors, and of course, market stalls that don’t take cards at all. If you plan to spend a lot of time in local villages or markets while staying at Raiwasa, you will encounter a time or two where cash is the only option. No matter your plans, it’s best to keep some local currency on hand.
Other Questions About Currency
If you have other questions about currency, or simply want some tips for brining, carrying, and spending money in Fiji, the staff at Raiwasa is happy to help. We want you to feel fully prepared for your Fiji luxury vacation, including have confidence in your currency and conversion knowledge. Send us an email here.