Tonga Fact Sheet

AIRLINES & AIRPORTS

Airlines – International

Airlines – Domestic

Airports

  • Tongatapu: Fua’amotu International Airport is located 21km south east of the capital Nuku’alofa.
  • ‘Eua: Kaufana Airport is located 3km south east of the capital ‘Ohonua.
  • Vava’u: Lupepau’u International Airport is located 10km north of the capital Neiafu.
  • Ha’apai: Pilolevu Airport is located 5km north of the capital Pangai.

BANKING & BUSINESS SERVICES

Banks
There are three commercial banks in Tonga: Westpac Bank of Tonga, ANZ Bank and MBF Bank. ANZ and Westpac Bank of Tonga have branches in Neiafu, Vava’u. Westpac Bank of Tonga has branches in Pangai, Ha’apai and ’Ohonua, ‘Eua .

Banks - Tongatapu Island

  • ANZ Bank, open Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm and on Saturday 9am-12noon.
  • Westpac Bank of Tonga: Open Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm and on Saturday 9am-12pm.
  • MBF: Open Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm.

Banks - ‘Eua  Island 

  • Westpac Bank of Tonga, ‘Ohonua, ph 50 145

Banks - Vava’u Island

  • ANZ Bank, Neiafu, ph 70 670
  • Westpac Bank of Tonga, Neiafu, ph 70 068

Banks - Ha’apai Group

  • Westpac Bank of Tonga, Pangai, ph 60 933

ATM Machines
Most of the ATM machines are located in and around Nuku’alofa, two in Vava’u and one each in Ha’apai and ‘Eua . Overseas travellers can use their credit cards in the ATMs, but you must have a PIN (Personal Identification Number) to withdraw cash.

ATM Machines - Tongatapu Island
ANZ

  • Sia'atoutau Gas Station, 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Fund Management Building, 24 hrs, 7 days
  • TCC main officeFangaloa, 24 hrs, 7 days
  • OSB store, 24 hrs, 7 days
  • EM Jones gas Station (Poutaha), 24 hrs, 7 days
  • ANZ Tu’imatamoana Wharf, 24 hrs, 7 days

WESTPAC

  • Westpac Bank (Fakafanua Centre) 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Westpac Bank (Head Office) 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Westpac Bank (Si’i Kae Ola Bldgs) 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Vaiola Hospital Bus Station 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Fua’amotu Airport 24 hrs, 7 days 

ATM Machines - ‘Eua Island

  • Westpac Westpac Bank  9am-3:30pm, Mon-Fri

ATM Machines - Vava’u Island

  • ANZ ANZ Bank, 24 hrs, 7 days
  • Westpac Westpac Bank,  24 hrs, 7 days

ATM Machines - Ha’apai Group

  • Westpac Bank,  9am-4pm, Mon-Fri

Business Hours
Government offices open from 8:30am-4:30pm and Shops are generally open from 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.  Saturday shopping hours are from 8am to 1pm. On Sunday, all shops are closed.

Currency

  • The Tongan pa’anga (TOP$) equals 100 seniti (cents).
  • Notes: $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50 Coins: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50.
  • Major credit cards (Visa, Master Card, American Express, Diners & JCB) are accepted at most major hotels and some restaurants and stores.
  • Travellers cheques are widely accepted at major banks and hotels.

EFTPOS
There are at present 205 Eftpos outlets found throughout Tonga for easy payment, which accept the following cards:

  • Visa, Mastercard, Amex, JCB, Local Debit Card, Handicard, Visa Debit Card.

Exchange Rates
Below are approximate exchange rates for major currencies as of 24 February 2008:

  • Australia  A$1 = TOP$1.76 
  • Canada  C$1 = TOP$1.89
  • Europe  Euro = TOP$2.84 
  • New Zealand  NZ$1 = TOP$1.54
  • UK  £1 = TOP$3.75 
  • USA  US$1 = TOP$1.89

(Please note exchange rates are subject to fluctuations at any given time, and should be confirmed on your arrival.)

CLIMATE

  • From December to April, the weather is hot and humid, with considerable rainfall.
  • The cool dry season, with average temperatures of up to 22ºC, runs from May to November.
  • Tradewinds make for pleasant days and cool nights.

COMMUNICATIONS
Communications - Main Companies

  • There are two telecommunications companies in Tonga: the Tonga Telecommunications Commission (TCC) and Digicel Tonga Ltd. The companies link Tonga to the world with the latest satellite system, email, fax, and telephone (ISD), mobile phones and cable services.
  • TCC on Salote Road, Fongoloa offers 24 hr fax and Pay Phone Countrywide (open 24 hours). Please note that pay phones are located outside TCC buildings and various locations in the town and rural areas as well as in ‘Eua, Ha’apai and Vava’u. You can use a phone card to make local and overseas calls.

Communications - Cell Phone Providers

DEPARTURE TAX
No tax is to be paid upon your departure from Tonga as it has been prepaid with your airline ticket.

DIPLOMATIC REPRESENTATIVES

  • HE Ms. Christine Bogle New Zealand, ph 23 122
  • HE Dr. Bruce Hunt Australia, ph 23 244
  • HE Mr Hu Yeshun China, ph 24 554

HONORARY CONSULS 

  • Mr Carl Sanft, Germany, ph 23 477
  • Mrs Tupou Pasikala Fiu, France, ph 15 835
  • Ms Aloma Johansson, Sweden, ph 22 284

DRESS

  • Bathing suits and bikinis are fine for the beach and poolside but are frowned upon if worn in public.
  • Tongan law prohibits any person from appearing in a public place without a shirt.
  • Dress conservatively. This means sleeves, and shorts or skirts below the knee. 
  • Wear shorts and a t-shirt when swimming at a public beach.
  • Skimpy swimwear is okay at resorts, but most Tongans swim fully dressed.

ELECTRICITY
240 volts AC Hz/ 50 cycle.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

  • Bona-fide tourists and business persons from the majority of countries, including New Zealand, United States, United Kingdom and Australia, may enter Tonga for a period not exceeding 31 days without a visa, but visitors from certain countries will need a visa prior to arrival. Check with your travel agent when you book your ticket.
  • If required, a visa application form can be downloaded from the Tonga Visitors Bureau website at www.tongaholiday.com or contact the Tonga Immigration Department at visatonga@gmail.com or phone: (676) 26 696/26 970.
  • Visitors must also have a valid passport (6 months or more), an onward air or sea ticket and relevant health certificates. If visitors wish to extend their stay, permission must be requested from the Principal Immigration Officer, Nuku’alofa.

HEALTH SERVICES
A valid yellow fever certificate and a valid cholera certificate are required by all travellers over one year old who have been in an infected area prior to arrival in Tonga.

Hospitals - Tongatapu Island

  • Vaiola Hospital, Tofoa, ph  23 200

Hospitals - ‘Eua Island

  • Niu’eiki hospital, Angaha, ph 50 111

Hospitals - Vava’u Island

  • Prince Wellington Ngu Hospital, Neiafu, ph 70 200 

Hospitals - Ha’apai Group

  • Niu’ui Hospital, Hihifo, ph 60 203

Doctors - Tongatapu Island

  • ‘Ana ’Akauola, Longolongo, ph 25 725
  • Semisi Latu, Fasi, ph  23 946
  • Makameone Taumoepeau, Kolofo’ou, ph 24 939
  • Sione Latu & Toakase Fakakovikaetau, Havelu, ph 28 390

Dentists - Tongatapu Island

  • Vaiola Hospital, Tofoa, ph 23 200
  • Liahona Dental Services, Liahona, ph 20 282

Dentists - Vava’u Island

  • Prince Wellington Ngu Hospital, Neiafu, ph 70 200
  • Ha’apai Niu’ui Hospital, Pangai, ph 60 203
  • ‘Eua Niu’eiki Hospital, Angaha, ph 50 111

Pharmacies -Tongatapu Island 

  • Fasi Pharmacy, FWC Building, Fasi, ph 22 955
  • Friendly Island Health Clinic, Longolongo, ph 25 725
  • Nuku’alofa Pharmacy, Kolomotu’a, ph 21 007
  • Oasis Clinic ,Kolofo’ou, ph 24 939
  • Pifeleti Pharmacy, Fanga, ph 28 187
  • Sausini Medical & Dental Clinic, Tofoa, ph 28 390
  • St Mary’s Dispensary, Ma’ufanga, ph 25 116
  • Town Clinic, Kolofo’ou, ph 25 656
  • Village Mission Clinic, Ha’ateiho, ph 29 052
  • Village Mission Pharmacy, Kolofo’ou, ph 27 522
  • Women Health Clinic, FWC Building, Fasi, ph 23 017

INTERNET CAFES
Internet Cafes - Tongatapu Island

  • Friends Café, Taufa’ahau Road, ph 22 390
  • Café Escape, Heart of Nuku’alofa, ph 21 212
  • Tau’olunga Komipiuta, Fasi, ph 24 828
  • Dataline, Taufa’ahau Road, ph 27 773
  • Infotech, Fanga, ph 27 399
  • Island Technology, Kolofo’ou, ph 24 274

Internet Cafes - Vava’u Island

  • Lighthouse Café, Neiafu, ph 71 395
  • Café Tropicana, Neiafu, ph 71 322

Internet Cafes - Ha’apai Group

  • Mariner’s Café, Pangai, ph 60 374 

MONEY TRANSFER
Money Transfer - Tongatapu Island

  • Western Union, Fund Management Bldg, ph 24 345
  • Moneygram, Westpac Bank of Tonga, ph 25108
  • Melie-mei-langi, Fanga, ph 28 787

Money Transfer - ‘Eua  Island

  • Western Union, ‘Ohonua, ph 50 395
  • Moneygram, ‘Ohonua, ph 50 145
  • Melie-mei-langi, ‘Ohonua, ph 50 007

Money Transfer - Vava’u Island

  • Western Union, Neiafu, ph 70 888
  • Moneygram, Neiafu, ph 70 068
  • Melie-mei-langi, Neiafu, ph 70 567

Money Transfer - Ha’apai Group

  • Western Union, Pangai, ph 60 338
  • Moneygram, Pangai, ph 60 933
  • Melie-mei-langi, Pangai, ph 60 796

 
NEWSPAPERS
Newspapers - Tongatapu Island

  • Tonga Chronicle, ph 23 302 - Thursday
  • Talaki Newspaper, ph 28 186 - Wednesday
  • Taimi ’o Tonga, ph 23 177 - Monday & Thursday
  • Kele’a, ph 21 553 - Wednesday

POST OFFICE
The Post Office is located on Taufa’ahau Road in Nuku’alofa. Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8:30am-4pm.

RELIGION
This devoutly Christian nation honours Sundays across every island group – the Sabbath is declared sacred in the Tongan Constitution. Virtually every denomination is represented in Tonga with each church taking an interest in the development of the country.

TAXES
Consumption Tax (CT) of 15% applies to imports and domestic supplies of good and services.

TIME ZONE
Tonga is 13 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time

TIPPING 
Tongans do not expect tips, although no offence will be caused if special service is rewarded in this way.

VISITOR INFORMATION

  • The Tonga Visitors Bureau is located on Vuna Road about 5 minutes walk from Nuku’alofa town centre.
  • Phone (676) 25 334; fax (676) 23507.
  • Email info@tvb.gov.to; web www.tongaholiday.com.

YACHT SERVICES
There are five ports of entry into Tonga: Tongatapu, Lifuka (Ha’apai), Vava’u, Niuatoputapu and Niuafo’ou. In all ports, yachts must fly the yellow quarantine flag and be available for inspection. For clearance purposes yachts may anchor in the restricted anchorage area near the wharf and along the waterfront as directed by the Tonga Visitor GuideHarbour Master. Customs Office hours are from 8.30am-4.30pm with a break from 12.30-1.30pm for lunch. Offices are open from Monday to Friday and yachts may not be cleared, either in or out, on the weekend. If you arrive outside normal hours, anchor close to the wharf, with the quarantine flag flying, and proceed to the wharf during appropriate times. At Nuku’alofa, contact the Ports Authority on VHR Channel 16/14 or A3A Nuku’alofa radio Ch 16/12/HF radio 2182.

Order your free Jasons Tonga Visitor Guide now.