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Samoa Travel Guide


Business Hours and Time

Business hours are weekdays 0800-1200 and 1330-1630, Saturday 0800-1200, with government offices closed on Saturday. Banks open weekdays 0900-1500, the post office 0900-1630 weekdays.

Expect most businesses to be closed on Sunday, although Samoa's Sunday closing laws are much more lenient than those of Tonga. Going to a church service on Sunday is actually an ideal way to experience Samoan culture.

Both Samoas share the same hour, and since the international date line is just west of here, this is where the world's day really ends.

Tonga and Samoa are on the same hour, but Samoa is 24 hours behind Tonga. The Samoas are three hours behind California time, 21 hours behind eastern Australian time.


Although no vaccinations are required (except yellow fever or cholera in the unlikely case that you're arriving directly from an infected area), it may be worthwhile to have been immunized against hepatitis A, typhoid fever, and tetanus (in case a dog bites you). Body lice and intestinal parasites are widespread among Samoan villagers; any pharmacy will have a remedy for the former. Check the expiration date before buying any medicines in Samoa. And take care with the tap water in Apia—boiled water and beer are safer.

In case of need, you'll receive faster attention from any of the private doctors and dentists listed in the Apia section than you would at a government hospital or clinic.

Weights and Measures

In American Samoa Imperial measurements (yards, miles) are used, while in Samoa it's all metric (meters, kilometers). Unlike American Samoa, where the electric voltage is 110 volts, in Samoa it's 240 volts AC, 50 cycles. However, if you plan to plug in an appliance (such as a hair drier or electric razor) at a deluxe hotel in Samoa, check the voltage carefully as some supply 110 volts instead of the usual 240 volts.

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