Travel Help, Please.

Jul 23rd, 2004, 09:30 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 10
Travel Help, Please.

my husband and i are traveling to nz for 3 weeks this september. typically, we land and just wing it and start our adventure. after reading the postings, i'm not sure if this is the wise way to travel in nz. since september is the spring, are reservations really necessary?
also, is it ill-advised to travel between north & south with the same rental car?
middyb is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2004, 06:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 658
I think that you can safely wing it. I would always book somewhere on arrival, as both Auckland and Christchurch can fill up and it is no fun wandering around looking for a place to stay.

I would also book Queenstown and Kaikoura if they are on your itinerary.

Generally, rental companies won?t let you take a car across the straits and it is expensive to do so. You just drop off the car at the ferry, book in with your luggage as though you were flying, then collect your luggage at the other end and collect a new car. Although you may have two rental agreements, Rental Companies normally treat this as a single rental so you get any benefit from a longer rental period ? however you should check that.
Tangata is offline  
Jul 23rd, 2004, 08:28 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 11,487
Maui will pay for a one-way ferry crossing for your rental car if you are renting for 10 days or more. You just have to pay the foot passenger fare.

Lee Ann
ElendilPickle is offline  
Jul 25th, 2004, 01:11 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 759
You will often find that it is to cheaper to rent a car in the south island and travel up towards the North island, as most people tend to do it the other way - this helps the car rental companies reposition their cars. (i.e most people want to take their cars from Auckland and leave them at Wellington and then pick them up at Picton and leave them a Christchurch airport)

You should have no trouble finding accomodation throughout New Zealand, as long as your flexible on location (you will have a car after all!) There is usually a plentiful supply of good cheap and clean motels on the outskirts of all the major towns and cities. If location or specific hotels are important book them in advance.
Walter_Walltotti is offline  
Jul 26th, 2004, 06:29 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,283

it's sort of difficult to say as we don't know your itinerary, or travel dates, but generally speaking, you shouldn't have any trouble unless you are toodling into an area during a period where they are having a festival or food & wine event, sporting event, that sort of thing.

For example...checking my NZ Upcoming Events brochure the Otago Festival of Arts begins at the end of September...

You don't need to have the same rental car when travelling between the North and South Island -- if you're taking the ferry from Wellington to Picton, there are rental car companies right at the pier in both areas. However, if you do know the date that you'll be doing this you might want to reserve the car in advance.

And, I agree with Tangata about Queenstown, and especially Kaikoura. A couple of years ago I had clients who absolutely wanted to swim with dolphins at Kaikoura - as their time was limited and they only had a day slotted I booked the tour in advance. When they got back they told me that it was a good thing -- the tour was full and they left some unhappy people standing on the dock!


Certified Kiwi Specialist
wlzmatilida is offline  
Jul 27th, 2004, 11:48 AM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 11,487
Another thought on booking in advance - sometimes you can get a discount that way. We saved 10% on our dolphin swim in Whakatane by booking over the Internet, for example. It doesn't hurt to check.

Lee Ann
ElendilPickle is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2004, 06:08 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 10
thank you all so much. i appreciate your replies and will look into these recommendations
middyb is offline  
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