Everything You Need to Know About Transport on Savai’i
Although there’s essentially only one way to get to Samoa’s “big island”, the options for exploring this South Pacific paradise are many! From relaxing with a local driver taking the wheel in a taxi or guided tour to enjoying a self-drive adventure via car, scooter or bicycle, Savai’i has a variety of transportation methods to truly make your holiday your own. Discover all of your options in this complete transport guide to Savai’i, including ways to get to and around the island.
1. Savai’i by Ferry – How to Get to Savai’i
The only way to get to Savai’i (other than having your own yacht) is via the interisland ferry between Upolu and Savai’i; find out how to get to Upolu in How to Get to Samoa? Ferries depart from and return to Mulifanua Wharf on Upolu roughly three times a day (once on Sundays), landing at Salelologa Wharf on Savai’i. The ferry crossing lasts approximately 60 to 90 minutes. There are passenger, vehicle and bicycle fees.
Find out more about what it’s like to take the ferry to Savai’i in Samoa Ferry Guide: How to Use the Ferry for Interisland Travel in Samoa.
2. Car Rental – How to Get Around Savai’i
A popular and convenient way to travel around Savai’i at your own pace is by renting a car. There is a small selection of car rental companies on Savai’i. However, they each have a limited fleet so are booked out quickly. Be sure to book in advance and do your research using The Best Car Rentals on Savai’i. An alternative option is to hire a car in Upolu and transport it over on the ferry, which often works out to be cheaper when taking ferry costs and cheaper fuel prices on Upolu into consideration. Compare car rentals in the 10 Best Car Rentals on Upolu.
For more information on the subject, such as getting a temporary driver’s license, check out What You Need to Hire a Car in Samoa.
3. Taxi Services – How to Get Around Savai’i
Readily available across Savai’i, taxis provide an easy and reasonably priced way to get from A to B. There are taxi stands in many of Savai’i’s villages, starting with at the ferry terminal when you first arrive. Your accommodation provider should be able to get in touch with the nearest one. Taxis don’t run on metres, so agree on a fare with the driver before departing.
Learn more about how taxis work in our guide, Taxis in Samoa: Taxi Fares, How to Use & More.
4. Bus Services – How to Get Around Savai’i
Ultra-cheap and a fun experience, Savai’i’s buses are a vibrant and popular way for locals to get around the island. With no real schedule, however, and no eagerness to get anywhere too quickly, buses should only be considered as a transport option if you’ve got plenty of time on your hands. Otherwise, you might just want to take the bus to do short trips into Salelologa if you’re staying nearby.
Find out more about taking the bus in our guide, Taking the Bus in Savai’i: Bus Fares, Routes & More.
5. Accommodation Transfers (Ferry Transfers) – How to Get Around Savai’i
A simple way to get between Salelologa Wharf and your accommodation is to book a transfer with your accommodation provider. Only some of the resort-style accommodation offer this service, however, such as Amoa Resort and Le Lagoto Resort, which should be arranged with the resort prior to arrival. Other accommodations may just arrange a taxi or shuttle service for you with an independent partner. It’s always worth asking what ferry/accommodation transfers are available.
6. Guided Island Tours – How to Get Around Savai’i
If you don’t want to find your own way around Savai’i, consider a guided tour. Accommodations like Amoa Resort and Falealupo Beach Fales offer guided tours to a few main attractions around Savai’i with refreshments provided. Alternatively, Savai’i Tours is an independent tour company offering plenty of itineraries. Even some resorts on Upolu offer one-day excursions to Savai’i with all of the transport included.
Choose your island tour from the 10 Best Day Tours of Savai’i.
7. Bicycle Rental – How to Get Around Savai’i
Take in the sights, sounds and smells of Savai’i at a much slower pace by cycling around the island. Choose either fully guided tour packages or freedom hire with Outdoor Samoa where you’ll transport your bike or e-bike on the ferry so you can get started with cycling on Savai’i as soon as you anchor. Cycling is mostly on quiet sealed roads with only a small number of uphills, making this an appealing option for most fitness levels.
Learn more about travelling around Savai’i by bike in The Ultimate Guide to Mountain Biking in Samoa.
8. Scooter Rental – How to Get Around Savai’i
With mostly sealed roads in good condition, riding a scooter around Savai’i is another viable option for those who wish to explore independently. Scooter hire is available on the island or you can transport a scooter from Upolu for a reasonable rate. There are a few rougher entry roads to some attractions, although they don’t tend to last that long. Needless to say, scootering is best if you’re carrying a backpack rather than a suitcase and you have a waterproof cover for that backpack as the rain can come down hard on Savai’i.
For more tips on hiring a scooter, check out Scooter Hire in Samoa: Where to Rent, Cost & More.
9. Savai’i by Yacht – How to Get to Savai’i
Although Apia on Upolu is the official port of entry for Samoa, those who call in there first can then anchor up on Savai’i. Asau Wharf on the northern coast of Savai’i provides good anchorage and is the location of the island’s Ports Authority. Find out more about visiting Samoa via yacht and the protocols involved in our Sailing Guide to Samoa: Tips for Yachting in Samoa.
More About Savai’i Transport and Getting Around Savai’i
That’s it for our guide to Savai’i transport with the ways to get around Savai’i, as well as how to get to Savai’i. If you have more questions about travelling around Savai’i, check out the following guides:
- Samoa Transport Guide: 10 Best Ways to Get Around Samoa
- The Driving Times in Samoa You Need to Know
- 5 Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Renting a Car in Samoa