All you need to know about travelling to and around our beautiful paradise!
When to travel
Anytime! It is warm all year round in the Cook Islands. April and May, September and October are considered better time to visit as it is a combination of warm and dry!
International Visitor Visa and Permit
The applicant must be intending a stay of less than 31 days (90 days for a NZ passport holder). There is no requirement to apply for a Visa before travelling and Permits are issued on arrival at the border as long as the following conditions are met (as indicated on the arrival card):
(a) must meet general requirements related to evidence of identity, character, and health, and proof of onwards travel:
(b) must provide evidence of sufficient funds for themselves, and if applicable, any dependent children:
(c) must be a bona fide visitor, not intending to undertake work for gain or reward, or study while in the Cook Islands.
Passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond your intended stay.
Information is subject to change at any time. Please visit Immigration Cook Islands for the most up to date information.
There are no longer vaccination, quarantine or isolation requirements. All information is subject to change and at short notice. Travel insurance is highly recommended. Visitors who fall ill during their trip should contact the nearest Public Health Clinic. For more details please visit COVID-19 Cook Islands Response
All Passengers pass through security screening point operated by the Aviation Security Service. There are security restrictions for all international flights from the Rarotonga International Airport. These restrictions are for the amount of liquids, aerosols and gel items (LAGs) that can be carried in the cabin of international flights per passenger.
All liquids, aerosols and gels (LAGs) in your carry-on baggage, on all departing international flights must be in containers of 100ml or less, and carried in a re-sealable 20cm x 20cm transparent plastic bag, that must be presented separately at the security screening point. If you plan to take LAGs greater than this amount with you, then they will need to be packed into your check-in luggage. For more information see Airport Authority Cook Islands.
ALL food items must be declared on your arrival card. Fruits and vegetables are not permitted. This is to protect the biodiversity on the island.
Duty Free is available at the both the arrival and departure hall at Rarotonga International Airport. Allowance is 250 cigarettes OR 250gms of tobacco OR 50 cigars. 2 litres of wine OR spirits OR 4.5 litres of beer. Duty Free can be pre-ordered.
The New Zealand dollar is used throughout the Cook Islands and recommended for tourist use. The Cook Island dollar is also used locally. There are plenty of ATMs in Rarotonga and a couple on Aitutaki. Visa and Mastercard are accepted at larger retailers, hotels and restaurants. American Express is not accepted on the islands.
English is widely spoken by the locals. Other Languages include Rarotongan and Pukapukan.
Travelling with children
The Cook Islands is incredibly child and family friendly. Restaurants cater for children. There are also plenty of fun activities available in and out of the sea. Around the sea it is important to be vigilant, children must be accompanied.
Cook Islands GMT-10:00
Wifi & Phone Sims
International phone and fax services, mobile telephones, mobile data services and wireless internet hotspots are provided by Vodafone Cook Islands. Vodafone Cook Islands Travel SIM is $49 Travel SIM valid for 15 days that includes internet data, text messages, local and international calls. Rates are subject to change, please see Vodafone Cook Islands for the most up to date rates. Wireless Internet Hotspots are available in many locations including Vodafone Teleshops, many accommodation providers, some local shops and eateries; however you will need to purchase a Vodafone Cook Islands voucher to use these. Postal services are also available at Vodafone Cook Islands.
Voltage is 240 AC/50 cycle, 3 pin plugs -same as those used in New Zealand and Australia.
Ambulance: 998 Police: 999 Fire: 996
The Cook Islands Tourism Corporation: +682-29-435
NZ High Commission: +682-22-201 Australian High Commission: +682-73-379 German Consulate: +682-24-567