US External Territory (Unincorporated). Gained a measure of self-government in 1977.
Head of state:
President Barack Obama since 2009.
Head of government:
Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga since 2013.
110V AC, 60Hz. US-style two-pin plugs are in use.
American Samoa is a tropical island paradise at the heart of Polynesia: seven freckles of land featuring volcanic backdrops, tropical forests and wildlife-rich woodlands.American Samoa's islands include Ta'u, Olosega and Ofu, known as the Manu'a group, which are volcanic in origin and dominated by high peaks. The islands' volcanoes, inactive since 1911, have left an intriguing land formation, including cavernous lava tubes.
Most people live in villages along the narrow coastal plains, living off the fruits of the sea, and cultivating agriculture on the plains and nearby hills. Traditional Samoan society is based on a chieftain system of hereditary rank, and is known as the Samoan way or fa'a Samoa. Despite the inroads of modern, Western civilisation, local cultural institutions remain the strongest single influence in American Samoan life.
Last updated: 27 March 2015
The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. 'We' refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Crime levels are low.
Tropical cyclones can seriously affect local travel, particularly sea journeys.