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General Chat Thread, Anyone been travelling in NZ lately? in General; Thinking of a three or four week trip in December and I am currently looking at flights of abour £1200 ...
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    HMCTech's Avatar
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    Anyone been travelling in NZ lately?

    Thinking of a three or four week trip in December and I am currently looking at flights of abour £1200 but I will be visiting family who are dotted all over both islands so my main thing to think about is travelling about. Its either a car hire or a bus/ferry/train pass for about £600 which lets you jump on anything opposed to car hire of about £450 plus the fuel costs. Just wondering if anyone has experianced either over there.

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    farmerste's Avatar
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    i found the buses/coaches are quicker than the trains in NZ. I have been a couple of times for a month, so if you have any questions , happy to help.

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    akidosaint's Avatar
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    Planning flying to NZ (south island) in 2013 any recommendations for who to fly with

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    Oaktech's Avatar
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    my boss is off travelling there for 2 months, he is flying there and back i believe with etihad with a thailand stopover, and he has north-south island transfers with a small local airline. the rest of the time they are bussing.

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    Busses are cheaper but a total PIA, you think public transport is bad in the UK. If you enjoy driving go for a car as the roads can be very fun if a lot challenging, just watch out for the cops who treat speeding like a homocide (not really but they are rather strict).

    I agree about the trains, they are their solely for the scenery whic is worth it if you are into that kind of thing but they are kind of a novelty item that has been saved from extinction multiple times for their extra features, scenery (on the long runs) rather than their viability.

    All in all it depends on what your needs are, if you like driving then a nice little 2L car will give you all sorts of fun in the south island over various scenic mountain crossings but you do have to confident as little mountain crossing roads here are carved into solid rock through snow and avolanches but are worthy of their own Top Gear omage episode.

    If your budget is more limited and your not really into driving the busses/public transport route may be easier.

    If you know when you are comming you may even be able to get free rental cars if you go the opposite to usual ways: Free Relocation Rental Cars and Campervans - Transfercar

    Sometimes they even pay for gas on your way back which can make it much cheaper.

    You may get more atmosphere in a bus/train but rollercoaster wise a car can be totally worth it.

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    Have you thought about using something like the Magic Bus? They run all over the country but also show you many different places on route. Its a fair few years since I used them but they were great. They are aimed at backpackers and will pick up and drop off from various accomadation in each town. We ended up travelling with a great bunch of people, my mate ended up marrying a girl he met on the bus!

    Whatever you end up doing I'm sure you'll have a great time, its a fantastic country.

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    kearton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by akidosaint View Post
    Planning flying to NZ (south island) in 2013 any recommendations for who to fly with
    I'd HIGHLY recommend Singapore Airlines. I've done the trip about a dozen times and they are by far my favourite.
    And my tip would be to take a change of t-shirt/socks/boxers in your carry-on luggage and pay the £5-ish to go to one of the lounges at Changi airport (they provide you with a towel). That hot shower feels MAGICAL after a 12hr flight and you're only half way

    I agree with SYNACK too... People moaned about UK public transport when I arrived in the UK (12yrs ago) but I thought it was fantastic compared to NZ's. lol

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    akidosaint (9th January 2012)

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    m25man's Avatar
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    For what it's worth,

    My tip is Fly into Christchurch and out of Auckland or vice Versa. That way you will be able to see more of Synack's beautiful country.
    i wasted a lot of time and cash going in and out via Auckland.
    We spent a week in the South Island where you really do need a car or you will miss some of the more remote places that the tourist buses don't go. I drove for hours and never saw another car in fact we never even saw a Police car!

    You can dump the car at the ferry terminal and use the Inter Islander to get back to the North Island where on my first day I was welcomed by the NZ Police and introduced to the Tourist Tax known as speeding tickets.
    These guys have forward facing Doppler Radar and cameras, they will have you banged to rights from 5km away!

    It cost me almost £200 in speeding tickets whilst touring the North Island and they were amongst the most arrogant I had ever met smirking all the way through the ritual. Gave me detailed instructions on how to find the nearest WestPac and even quoted me the days exchange rate. Be warned tourists in rental cars are a stealth tax in NZ.

    We never booked a single room in advance the AA guide is a fantastic resource and the local tourist offices found us fantastic B&B stop overs.
    For our last week we rented a fantastic little cabin in Russel and toured the Northland at a very leisurely pace definately not to be missed.

    It's a bit out of date now but Billy Connoly's Tour of NZ video of 2005 inspired my trip and it's well worth a watch to get some idea of what is worth visiting, highly recommended viewing for potential NZ visitors.

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    kearton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by m25man View Post
    ...on my first day I was welcomed by the NZ Police and introduced to the Tourist Tax known as speeding tickets.
    These guys have forward facing Doppler Radar and cameras, they will have you banged to rights from 5km away!
    That's why I used to have a Uniden Laser/Radar detector. Saved my bacon many times and paid for itself many times over...

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    akidosaint's Avatar
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    Just got back from my trip to New Zealand Like to thank @kearton for his advice on singapore airlines and the travel lounge shower at singapore was god send. Me and OH are already planning our return trip.

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    kearton (10th April 2013)

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    kearton's Avatar
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    Glad to help

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