Anticipation is the greatest joy!
Planning your holiday is exciting but you will find alot of questions pop up, especially when you are traveling overseas. ie Do I need to apply for a visa? What’s the currency in New Zealand? Do they driving on the left or right side of the road? What is freedom camping? How do I contact the emergency services?
In this section you will get helpful tips and links to other resources about things you should know before you start your journey.
Currency & Banking
The official currency is the New Zealand dollar (NZ$). All major credit cards are accepted in New Zealand. Visa and Mastercard are used most widely.
Banks are open 9am – 4.30pm, Monday to Friday. ATMs are widespread.
Driving in New Zealand
You must hold a valid driver license to be legally allowed to drive in New Zealand. If your license isnt in English, please bring your International Driver Permit and your original license.
Driving in New Zealand is different. Kiwi’s drive on the left hand side of the road and the driver seat is found on the right. When you are used to driving on the right hand side it’s quite challenging at the beginning. However it is easy to check if you are right as if you are driving you should always be seated in the middle of the road. For more information visit the website of Tourism New Zealand.
From the 1st of October 2019, visitors from visa-waiver countries must request an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) prior to arrival. There may also be an International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy. For more information please visit Immigration New Zealand.
All visitors to New Zealand must have a passport valid and the right visa to enter New Zealand. There are different visa types for different countries. Please visit the New Zealand Immigration government website for more information.
May not be the most important information but definitely helpful. As soon as you leave a city, town or village and you come to rural areas you won’t find reception easily. So be prepared to enjoy your holiday offline. During the Summer months there are a lot of mosquitos but they aren’t as annoying as sand flies. Sand flies look harmless but their bites itch for ages. A lot of people have New Zealand as a small island in the southern part of the pacific in their mind. If you lay New Zealand over Europe it reaches from
i-SITE Visitor Centres
The i-SITE Visitor Centres know where to stay, what to do and how to get there. The travel experts at i-SITE can also do bookings for you. These include accommodation, transport, activities and attractions. You will also be informed about weather & mountain safety, travel itineraries and nearby events. There are more than 80 i-SITEs around New Zealand. Click here to find a list of all i-SITE branches.
Department of conservation
The Department of Conservation is an agency run by the government who is taking care to conserve New Zealand’s natural and historic heritage. Prepare your trip and travel more aware. You can find all the information about how to be pro-active and conservative, as well as areas and places which are protected on the DOC website.
DOC also provides more than 200 campsites around the country.
Weather and CLimate
New Zealand has four seasons – Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Each of it has it’s own advantages to travel.
During Spring the blossums are out, you enjoy less tourists, warmer temperatures and longer days. Summer is high season and the most popular time of the year. Autumn is all about the warm colours, the temperatures slowly drop and it’s a great time for hiking. Winter is full of surprises – snow in the mountains and pleasant temperatures in the valleys.
Because New Zealand lies in the Southern Hemisphere, the average temperature drops the further south you travel.
And, more importantly, due to it’s position, the hills and mountains, the weather in New Zealand is unpredictable.