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Yesterday, Today or Tomorrow?

Updated on May 13, 2011
International Dateline
International Dateline


It must be going to be the party of the century. Celebrate bringing in 2012, then take an hour flight and start bringing it in all over again.

The Prime Minister, of Samoa, Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, plans to scratch this years’ December 31 from the calendar, celebrating New Years a day early. However, American Samoa, an hour flight away has no such plans.

The international dateline runs midway down the Pacific but does not have any specific international law dictating where exactly it is. This has allowed PacificIslands to make their own choice as to which side of the line they wish to be.

In 1892 Samoa first moved to the east of the line and in tribute to the US celebrated the 4th July twice. Now, according to their Prime Minister, considering the amount of business they do with New Zealand, Australia and South East Asia they are losing out by being one day out of sync with them. Currently, while Samoans are at Church on Sunday, Australia and New Zealand have already started their Monday business day.

The Samoan Prime Minister previously made a move from America to Australia when, in 2009 he enacted a law switching from driving on the right, to driving on the left. This, he said, would make it easier for those who bought second hand cars from Australia.

With the United States increasing debt and decreasing popularity, does this mark the start of a trend for small countries to begin to distance themselves from the US?


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    • profile image

      Chasmine 3 years ago

      It was dark when I woke. This is a ray of suhisnne.

    • SteveMacken profile image

      SteveMacken 6 years ago from Galway, Ireland.


    • Mel Jay profile image

      Mel Jay 6 years ago from Australia

      That is really funny, I could potentially go to Samoa, celebrate a birthday or anniversary or something, then go to American Samoa and do it all over again! They could market the whole double occasion thing really well if they got together over it. I bet there is nowhere else like it. Voted up and useful from me - great read, thanks - Mel :)