Using data collected from +700 poor households impacted by Fiji’s Winston tropical cyclone in 2016, this paper examines the effect that different types of transfers (i.e. cash, in-kind, or voucher) have on how citizens evaluate government performance in post-emergency contexts. Standard economic models predict better evaluations of cash transfers. We provide evidence that contravenes these models, in that we find citizens report a more positive evaluation of government performance when non-perishable goods are provided in-kind, and perishable goods are provided as vouchers. Our model develops a more nuanced understanding of how citizens evaluate government performance and opens a discussion about the political economy motivations of emergency-relief policy design.