For those of you living outside the equatorial belt, you're probably used to dealing with several months of cold weather per year. Skip the winters altogether and head straight to Fiji during your high school's breaks!
With an average temperature of 75°F (24°C), it’s one of the most idyllic places in the world to enjoy a bit of sun. Furthermore, it's a fascinating place to volunteer or travel as a high schooler. High school students interested in exploring Fiji will find a unique culture, friendly people, and entrancing ocean views.
Fiji is great for students who are interested in the tropical life, learning a new language, spending time outside, sea life, experiencing a unique culture, and munching on exotic fruits.
Photo Credits: Christian Haugen.
For those interested in studying abroad in Fiji, you can choose from:
- A volunteer study abroad program
- A study / travel program over spring, winter, or summer break
Teen Travel Tours
Teen travel tours are a great option for high school students who want to spend less time overseas. These programs are excellent ways for students to learn and study through travel while having the experience of a lifetime. Tours often have different focuses like volunteering, cooking, or adventure while integrating educational components like environmental conservation.
Fiji may just be a glamorous destination for some travelers, but over a third of the local population lives below the poverty line. Students wishing to make a difference can spend time volunteering in Fiji (some of the programs listed on our volunteer abroad section are also available to high schoolers / families).
Opportunities include working to protect the abundant marine habit around Fiji, teaching disadvantaged children, and providing medical assistance for those in need. Programs can range from a week to a few months in length. As Fiji is an inexpensive destination, participation costs are low.
Students will likely spend some time in Suva, the capital of Fiji. However, volunteer and teen travel programs won't keep you there the entire time. Be prepared to visit some of the less populated areas of Fiji as well.
Citizens from the UK, Australia, Canada, or the United States are permitted to stay up to four months in Fiji with no visa required. A student visa is required for those wishing to study and stay longer. You’ll need to provide proof of financial stability, a medical report, a passport copy, a notarized birth certificate, and passport photos. If you’re traveling with a program, they’ll provide assistance with completing and obtaining the proper visa.
Housing options vary depending on the study abroad program you choose in Fiji. Students participating in youth travel programs will likely share a hotel room with fellow travelers. Homestays are often included as a part of the itinerary so students can experience local Fijian life. Volunteer programs will either provide hotel accommodations or arrange for a homestay.
If you’re coming from North America to the Nadi International Airport in Fiji it can cost you between $1,000 - $1,400 USD. Students flying from Europe will spend around $1,400 as well.
Costs for transportation, food, evenings out, and extra expenses in Fiji are all much lower than in countries like the United States, Canada, and the UK. Those who are volunteering or spending time in rural areas will find themselves spending even less. A reasonable average daily budget for students in Fiji would be $15 USD.
A high school student’s program costs can vary according to where in Fiji they study, the type of housing, the length of their stay, and what’s included. It can range from $1,000 for a two-week trip to $4,000 for a summer program to $11,000 for a semester-long program.
For a tropical destination like Fiji, you won't need to pack many layers, but you will need rain gear. It's important to note the type of weather for the time of year you are travelling. The dry season is June through October while the wet monsoon season is November through April. Here is a list of the absolute essentials:
- Breathable and UPF (sun resistant) clothing
- A raincoat and umbrella
- Solid walking sandals or shoes for outdoor adventures
- Swim gear and a sarong (which can be bought there)
- Sunscreen and mosquito repellent
- A hat
- A power and voltage converter
Traces of the Zika virus have been found in Fiji. To learn more about Zika and how to avoid getting infected, read the Washington Post's article on Zika precautions.
It is recommended that travelers receive hepatitis, yellow fever, typhoid, and tetanus vaccinations before traveling to Fiji. Mosquitos in Fiji can carry diseases, especially during the wet season, so high school students should use bug repellant and cover their skin.
Insect repellant is especially important now, as there has been an increase in confirmed cases of dengue, chikungunya and Zika virus infection in Fiji.
It is recommended you drink bottled water in Fiji, especially in local villages. When eating shellfish or meat, make sure it’s properly and thoroughly cooked. Sometimes salads are washed in impure water, making them hazardous to a foreigner’s stomach. With Fiji’s warm climate, be sure to hydrate as well.
High school students traveling in Fiji should follow general safety guidelines and they should have no issues. Students should be aware of their surroundings in more urban settings as pickpocketing and petty theft is known to happen. Female students should refrain from walking alone at night as instances of assault have been reported. Always follow local government laws and stay away from illegal drugs and underage consumption of alcohol.