French Polynesia Plans To Reopen For Leisure Arrivals On May 1, 2021

French Polynesia closed its borders for leisure arrivals on February 3 and announced last week that they plan to welcome visitors again from May 1, 2021.

It is unclear whether visitors need to have proof of having vaccinated against Covid-19, recovered from the virus, or if the PCR-RT test is enough to enter the islands.

Here’s information from Air Tahiti Nui:

The Islands of Tahiti Announces Re-Opening Starting May 1st, 2021 CDC Requirements and Flight Schedule – Important to View

May 1: Reopening of Borders to Tourism

The President of French Polynesia, Mr. Edouard Fritch traveled to Paris to meet several members of the French government and President Mr. Emmanuel Macron.

The following subjects have been discussed in particular:

  • the COVID-19 pandemic in French Polynesia has clearly improved and is under control with less than 20 new cases per week, thanks to the protective measures enforced;
  • the vaccination campaign is accelerating in The Islands of Tahiti where vaccination against COVID-19 is now open to all;
  • new entry formalities taking into account vaccinated people and immunized travelers are being finalized.
  • the degraded economic and social context of our islands, which are heavily dependent on tourism, has been widely debated.

Back in Tahiti, the President of French Polynesia made the official announcement during a press conference Wednesday April 7, that The Islands of Tahiti will reopen to tourism as of May 1!

Regarding entry conditions, he said, “We are going to put in place a protocol at the entry of our borders using virological testing, serological testing, vaccine and ETIS (Electronic Travel Information System). We will explain this protocol in detail with the High Commissioner in the coming days”.

It is interesting to see when these routes by other airlines than Air Tahiti Nui will reopen. Air New Zealand, United Airlines, LATAM, Air Calédonie, and Hawaiian have had a variable number of weekly flights to Papeete.


Most leisure arrivals to French Polynesia have come from France and the United States after the border was reopened last year.

The difficult Covid-19 situation in France likely led to the border closure of French Polynesia, although their infection rates have been low. France essentially banned all non-essential travel, including that to Tahiti.

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