Traveling Luck for Kiribati
Kiribati is located in Oceania, group of 33 coral atolls in the Pacific Ocean, straddling the Equator; the capital Tarawa is about one-half of the way from Hawaii to Australia; note - on 1 January 1995, Kiribati proclaimed that all of its territory lies in the same time zone as its Gilbert Islands group (GMT +12) even though the Phoenix Islands and the Line Islands under its jurisdiction lie on the other side of the International Date Line.
Land in Kiribati is mostly low-lying coral atolls surrounded by extensive reefs.
I-Kiribati land covers an area of 811 square kilometers which is four times the size of Washington, DC
As for the I-Kiribati climate; tropical; marine, hot and humid, moderated by trade winds.
I-Kiribati (singular and plural) speak I-Kiribati, English (official).
Places of note in Kiribati
I-Kiribati National Map
The Gilbert Islands were granted self-rule by the UK in 1971 and complete independence in 1979 under the new name of Kiribati. The US relinquished all claims to the sparsely inhabited Phoenix and Line Island groups in a 1979 treaty of friendship with Kiribati.
A remote country of 33 scattered coral atolls, Kiribati has few natural resources. Commercially viable phosphate deposits were exhausted at the time of independence from the UK in 1979. Copra and fish now represent the bulk of production and exports. The economy has fluctuated widely in recent years. Economic development is constrained by a shortage of skilled workers, weak infrastructure, and remoteness from international markets. Tourism provides more than one-fifth of GDP. The financial sector is at an early stage of development as is the expansion of private sector initiatives. Foreign financial aid from UK, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and China equals about 20% of GDP. Remittances from seamen on merchant ships abroad account for more than $5 million each year. Kiribati receives around $15 million annually for the government budget from an Australian trust fund.
I-Kiribati natural resources include phosphate (production discontinued in 1979)
21 of the 33 islands are inhabited; Banaba (Ocean Island) in Kiribati is one of the three great phosphate rock islands in the Pacific Ocean - the others are Makatea in French Polynesia, and Nauru
I-Kiribati religion is Roman Catholic 52%, Protestant (Congregational) 40%, some Seventh-Day Adventist, Muslim, Baha'i, Latter-day Saints, Church of God (1999).
Natural hazards in Kiribati include typhoons can occur any time, but usually November to March; occasional tornadoes; low level of some of the islands make them very sensitive to changes in sea level.
- The British High Commission in Tarawa closed on 31 March 2005. Routine consular services for British nationals are provided by the Australian High Commission in Tarawa. The British High Commission in Fiji is responsible for non-routine consular matters. Please see the General section of this travel advice for more details.
- Swimming in south Tarawa Lagoon is not advisable due to pollution; extreme caution is recommended on ocean-side reefs.
- The threat from terrorism in Kiribati is low but you should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
- Tropical cyclones are common in Kiribati from the beginning of November until the end of April. Please see Hurricanes.
- Only a handful of British nationals visit Kiribati each year. Most visits are trouble-free. We are not aware of any British nationals who have required consular assistance in Kiribati in the past year. However, you should be aware that there is some petty theft and you should take care with personal possessions; whilst women travelling on their own should exercise caution, particularly at night.
- We strongly recommend that you obtain comprehensive travel and medical insurance before leaving UK. You should check any exclusions, and that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake. Please see: Travel Insurance
SAFETY AND SECURITY
Kiribati Country Profile
LOCAL LAWS AND CUSTOMS
Single parents or other adults travelling alone with children should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. For further information on exactly what will be required at immigration please contact: Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Immigration, PO Box 68,Bairiki, Tarawa, Kiribati. Telephone:+686 21342, Fax: +686 21466.
If you require a new passport, application forms can be downloaded from the Internet. To avoid unnecessary delays, you are advised to contact the British High Commission in Suva (Fiji) before submitting your completed passport application form to the British High Commission in Wellington, New Zealand (please see the New Zealand Travel Advice for contact details). Where possible, you are advised to apply at least two months before your passport is due to expire. You will be allowed to retain your old passport whilst waiting for the replacement to be issued and returned.
In the event of an emergency, the Australian High Commission in Tarawa can issue emergency travel documents and will ask you to complete a lost/stolen report form. We strongly advise you to keep a photocopy of the relevant pages of your passport, to avoid any complications.