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Transportation

Air Nauru

Air Nauru flies to Kiribati weekly from Australia

Air Kiribati

Air Kiribati offer a domestic service between the Gilbert Islands

Outer Island Runways

The runways are often basic - sometimes doubling as a road

Minivan

A constant stream of minivans service South Tarawa from Betio to Buota (the end of the road)

Trucks

Outer islands generally do not have cars - trucks are often used for transportation

Police Truck

The police help the children get home from school

Trucks

Trucks are often used for transportation. It is very rough on the back of the trucks especially with all the potholes in the road

International and domestic transportation is essential for the economic development of Kiribati.

Given the geographical dispersion and isolation of Kiribati, transportation is very important for the people and government.

Due to the heavy reliance on imported goods from overseas for survival a reliable international transportation system is essential.

However, running and sustaining a transportation system in Kiribati is very expensive.

International Transportation

Kiribati is an isolated nation. Getting to and from Kiribati is difficult and there is limited access. Due to the isolation the main way to access Kiribati is via scheduled air services.

Kiribati has 2 International airports and they are located on Tarawa and Kiritimati Islands.

As well as limited schedules the airfares to and from Kiribati are relatively expensive by international standards.

No international ships service Kiribati on a regular schedule for passengers.

Getting to Tarawa

Fiji Airways flies from Nadi to Tarawa twice a week (Monday and Thursday). The trip lasts approximately 3 hours.

Fiji Airways flies from Tarawa to Nadi twice a week (Monday and Thursday). The trip lasts approximately 3 hours.

Our Airline (Air Nauru) flies from Brisbane to Tarawa (via Nauru and the Marshall Islands) every week (Sunday). The trip lasts approximately 9 hours.

Our Airline flies from Tarawa to Brisbane (via the Marshall Islands and Nauru) every week (Monday). The trip lasts approximately 9 hours.

Getting to Kiritimati

Fiji Airways flies from Nadi to Kiritimati once a week (Wednesday). The trip lasts approximately 4 and a half hours.

Fiji Airways flies from Kiritimati to Nadi once a week (Wednesday). The trip lasts approximately 5 and a half hours.

Fiji Airways flies from Honolulu to Kiritimati once a week (Tuesday). The trip lasts approximately 3 and a quarter hours.

Fiji Airways flies from Kiritimati to Honolulu once a week (Wednesday). The trip lasts approximately 3 and a quarter hours.

Domestic Transportation

The main forms of transportation in Kiribati are by sea, air and ground.

Land transportation includes bicycles, motor bikes, car, trucks ad buses.

Sea Transportation

Ships operate from South Tarawa to all the outer Gilbert islands transporting passengers, cargo and vehicles.

Sea transportation is provided by the Government through its owned company (Kiribati Shipping Services Ltd) and local private businesses. For inter island travel sea transport is often favoured because it is more affordable. A problem with the inter islands shipping services in Kiribati is the lack of enforcement of the Maritime Act which affects safety. The safety of sea transportation requires effective enforcement and monitoring strategies.

The Government subsidizes the operations of shipping services for the southern islands and those islands a long distance from the capital especially when transporting basic food commodities.

The Phoenix Islands are currently only accessible by sea but you must have your own vessel to reach them or join one of the few adventure sailing cruises that visit there.

Domestic Air Services

The Government operates local air services in the Gilbert Islands through its commercial company, Air Kiribati Ltd (AKL).

The challenge for Air Kiribati is to provide air services to remote islands in a commercially viable manner.

Given the high cost of running air services in Kiribati there are very few private operators willing to enter this business.

To get from Tarawa to Kiritimati by air is difficult and involves transiting in Fiji. Fiji Airways flies from Tarawa to Nadi and then Nadi to Kiritimati.

Land Transportation

Many outer islands do not have motorised vehicles - the only way to get around these areas is on bicycle or by foot.

Motorbikes are a convenient mode of transport throughout the islands.

Land transportation is largely handled by private operators and through local councils.

Buses are the most convenient and inexpensive way of travelling around South Tarawa with fleets of private buses servicing Betio to Buota (the end of the road).

In South Tarawa land transportation is not a problem but in the outer islands it is not fully developed. One of the challenges for the outer islands is mainenance of roads.