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American Samoa - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in American Samoa.
Safety and security
Safety and security
Petty and violent crime occurs on occasion. Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times.
Road conditions and road safety are poor throughout the territory. Buses and taxis are available.
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
Learn more about foreign domestic airlines.
Tidal changes can cause powerful currents in the many coastal lagoons that surround the islands, and several fatal swimming accidents are recorded each year. Consult local residents and tour operators for information on possible hazards and safe swimming areas.
General safety information
Do not approach or feed stray dogs, as they can become aggressive.
The High Commission of Australia in Apia, Samoa, provides consular assistance to Canadians in American Samoa under the Canada-Australia Consular Services Sharing Agreement; there is no resident Canadian government office in American Samoa. You are encouraged to register with the High Commission of Australia to receive the latest information on situations and events that could affect your safety.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.
We have obtained the information on this page from the authorities of the United States (U.S.). It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.
Canadians must present a passport to visit American Samoa, which must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of expected departure from that territory. You do not require an entry permit for stays of less than 30 days provided you have proof of onward or return travel.
Prior to travelling, ask your transportation company about its requirements related to passport validity, which may be more stringent than the country's entry rules.
Temporary passport holders may be subject to different entry requirements. Check with diplomatic representatives for up-to-date information.
Official (special and diplomatic) passport holders must consult the Official Travel page, as they may be subject to different entry requirements.
Canadian citizens generally do not require a visa to enter a U.S. overseas territory for the purposes of visiting or studying.
Presidential Proclamation Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats (the “Proclamation”)
Consult the Travel Advice and Advisories for the United States for information on the Presidential Proclamation Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats (the “Proclamation”).
Providing additional information at borders
Travellers entering the United States by air or by sea are required to provide additional information, such as their address while in the United States, including American Samoa. They may also be asked for evidence of residential, employment or educational ties to Canada, proof that the trip is for a legitimate purpose and is of a reasonable length, and proof of financial support while in the country.
More information on border security programs currently in force in the Unitedt States is available from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Some Canadians may have U.S. as well as Canadian citizenship through birth in the United States or through naturalization or descent. Under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, U.S. citizens are required to present a valid U.S. passport to enter or re-enter the U.S. by air. Although U.S. authorities do not formally require dual nationals to carry both a U.S. and a Canadian passport, carrying both documents as proof of citizenship may facilitate both entry into the U.S. and returning to Canada. Consult Laws and culture for more information.
If you have a criminal record, no matter the severity or the date of the offence, you may be refused entry to the United States. You may also experience problems when travelling through U.S. airport facilities. A pardon for an offence issued by Canadian authorities is not recognized under U.S. law for the purpose of entry into the United States. If you have a criminal record, you should contact one of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services ports of entry by telephone or contact the Embassy of the United States of America or one of its consulates well in advance of your departure from Canada. If you are ineligible to enter the U.S., you may apply for a waiver of ineligibility. This will involve completing Form I-192, "Advance Permission to Enter the U.S. as a Non-Immigrant." There is a fee and it may take several months to process your application. Waiver application forms are available from any port of entry to the U.S., any preclearance site in Canada, and the Embassy of the United States of America or one of its consulates in Canada. A list of designated ports of entry that accept filings of waiver applications as well as the application form are available from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
U.S. ports of entry are computerized and connected to a centralized database. Information is readily available on criminal convictions in both Canada and the U.S. Even though you may have entered the U.S. without hindrance in the past, you could run into difficulty if your record shows a criminal conviction or a previous denial of entry. Attempting to gain entry without a waiver could result in several weeks of detention and a permanent bar from entering the United States.
If you are an American citizen who left the United States to avoid military service and have not since regularized your status, there might be an outstanding warrant for your arrest or you might be ineligible for U.S. entry. If in doubt, check with the nearest U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services port of entry. If you need information about regularizing your status with the U.S. military, contact the Embassy of the United States of America.
If you have an unusual situation concerning entry into the United States, you should obtain authoritative information from the U.S. authorities immediately before your visit. For more information, consult the Embassy of the United States of America or U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Children and travel
Learn about travel with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
For more detailed information on U.S. entry requirements, consult our Travel Advice and Advisories page for the United States.
- Chikungunya: advice for travellers - September 25, 2017 00:00 EDT
Be sure that your routine vaccines, as per your province or territory, are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Some of these vaccines include: measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.
Vaccines to Consider
You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health provider about which ones are right for you.
Hepatitis A is a disease of the liver spread through contaminated food and water or contact with an infected person. All those travelling to regions with a risk of hepatitis A infection should get vaccinated.
Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.
Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Get the flu shot.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease and is common in most parts of the world.
Be sure your measles vaccination is up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Yellow Fever - Country Entry Requirements
Yellow fever is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.
Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.
- There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
- Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.
- Vaccination is not recommended.
* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
Food and Water-borne Diseases
Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.
In some areas in the Oceanic Pacific Islands, food and water can also carry diseases like hepatitis A. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in the Oceanic Pacific Islands. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
- Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.
- Risk of developing travellers' diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor standards of hygiene and sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.
- The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.
Insects and Illness
Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.
There is currently an outbreak of chikungunya in this country. Chikungunya is a viral disease spread through the bite of an infected mosquito that typically causes fever and pain in the joints. Protect yourself from mosquito bites, particularly around sunrise and sunset. There is no vaccine available for chikungunya.
Zika virus infection
Zika virus infection is a risk in this country. The mosquito that spreads the virus is found here.
All travellers should protect themselves from mosquito bites and other diseases spread by insects.
There is no risk of malaria in this country.
Animals and Illness
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Certain infections found in the Oceanic Pacific Islands, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Medical facilities are limited. Medical evacuation may be necessary in the case of serious injury or illness and is very expensive. Make sure you have travel insurance that covers all medical expenses, including hospitalization abroad and medical evacuation.
There is a hyperbaric (decompression) chamber available at the LBJ Tropical Medical Center (Tel.: +1 684 633 1222) on the island of Tutuila, near Pago Pago.
Keep in Mind...
The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.
Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.
Laws and culture
Laws & culture
You must abide by local laws.
Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad.
Sentences for the importation of narcotics and other illegal drugs are severe.
Traffic drives on the right. An international driving permit is not required for a period of 30 days or less.
Dress conservatively, behave discreetly and respect religious and social traditions to avoid offending local sensitivities.
Although the laws of American Samoa do not prohibit sexual acts between individuals of the same sex, there is little social tolerance of homosexuality.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in the United States. However, Canadian officials may be limited in their ability to provide you with consular services if local authorities consider you an American citizen. Although U.S. authorities do not formally require dual nationals to carry both a U.S. and a Canadian passport, you should carry both documents as proof of citizenship and present yourself as Canadian to foreign authorities to minimize this risk. Citizenship is determined solely by national laws, and the decision to recognize dual citizenship rests completely with the country in which you are located when seeking consular assistance. Consult Travelling as a dual citizen for more information.
The currency is the U.S. dollar (USD). Major credit cards are accepted at hotels, car-rental firms and airlines. Automated banking machines are available.
Natural disasters and climate
Natural disasters & climate
American Samoa is located in an active seismic zone and is prone to earthquakes. A tsunami can occur within minutes of a nearby earthquake and can travel long distances across the Pacific. If staying in accommodations on the coast, familiarize yourself with the region’s evacuation plans in the event of a tsunami warning.
The rainy and cyclone seasons in the South Pacific extend from November to April. Severe rainstorms can cause flooding and landslides, resulting in significant loss of life and extensive damage to infrastructure, and hampering the provision of essential services. Disruptions to air services and to water and power supplies may also occur. Keep informed of regional weather forecasts, avoid disaster areas and follow the instructions of local authorities.
During a cyclone, hotel guests may be required to leave accommodations near the shore and move to safety centres inland. Travel to and from outer islands may be disrupted for some days.
Consult our Typhoons and monsoons page for more information.
Dial 911 for emergency assistance.
There is no resident Canadian government office in American Samoa. You can obtain consular assistance and further information from the High Commission of Australia in Apia, Samoa, under the Canada-Australia Consular Services Sharing Agreement.
Apia - High Commission of Australia
Wellington - High Commission of Canada
For emergency consular assistance, call the High Commission of Australia in Apia and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.
The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.
The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, express or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.
If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
Learn more about consular services.
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