All of the major airlines around the world fly to New Zealand. What
you will have to do in some cases is fly via the nation of the airline
i.e. Malaysian airlines will take you via Malaysia and Kuala Lumpar.
As previously mentioned the hardest bit is deciding on the route as
New Zealand is in the southern most reaches of the Pacific Ocean you
are spoilt for choices whether you fly, sail or even cruise.
The later you are more restricted but if you are flying then you can
fly via Asia or the America's if flying from Europe. If flying via America's
then you can either take the obvious route and fly via the USA or there
is the more imaginative route via Canada and through the Pacific Islands
or maybe via a South American country. Flying via Asia there are a wide
variety of stop overs that you can take that will make the journey that
much more interesting, the only real limit being time. Of course if
you fly either way there is always the opportunity to do a small excursion
If you wish to sail to New Zealand then there are a number of opportunities.
One would be to be a part of a crew on a yacht that is sailing to New
Zealand from you resident country. Alternately if you fly to the Pacific
rim then you might be able to catch a yacht that is sailing to New Zealand
but you will have to catch it at the right time of year as the yachts
doing a round trip generally want to be in NZ for the summer.
If you want to sail back part of the route, i.e. across the Pacific
Ocean then you can catch one of the numerous yachts sailing back north
at the end of the New Zealand summer. You will stand a better chance
of being selected as a member of a crew if you have crewed a yacht before
and if you have some skills such as navigational or generally sailing.
Once in New Zealand the next problem would be to get around. Your means
of transport would be greatly dictated by your budget.
The cheapest but not the most reliable is hitching. There is plenty
of scope to hitch in New Zealand but do not expect to get a lift every
time and if you want to improve your prospects of getting lift it is
advisable to be walking along by the road. I found that I was offered
numerous lifts without even having stuck my thumb out. I was told on
a number of occasions that the driver would not normally pick up a hitch
hiker if they are just sitting beside the road. This is a catch twenty
two situation if you have been walking all day and have run out of steam.
The next method of getting around which is quite popular and reasonably
cheap is cycling. Bike's in New Zealand are comparable with other parts
of the world whether it be price or quality so you could always buy
one in New Zealand.
A mode of transport that is not cheap but it gets you to a destination
is relying on the bus and coach service. The most common carriers are
Newmans and Mount Cook line. These are nation wide coach services that
you can book ahead, and via the Internet. But there are local bus services
worth considering. Coaches will always have a break/stop off at a cafe.
The next mode of transport would be via a car. These come in two categories,
those that are hired or rented and those that are bought. There are
car hire specialists in all of the main cities in New Zealand or you
can arrange your hired vehicle from your country of origin there is
usually a restriction though with hiring, you cannot take the vehicle
onto a metalled road as it will damage the paint work or the window
If you decide to buy a car whilst in New Zealand then there are a number
of things that you need to know that are a legal requirement. One is
that you will need to be insured, this is reasonably cheap and comprehensive.
We got full comprehensive insurance cover for the year which insured
our luggage and window screen and we also got full AA membership which
is nothing to be sniffed at, all of this cost us some $185. Finally
on the legally side of life it will be worth getting a guide to the
highway code. there are a few minor differences with driving in New
Zealand, one being that any vehicle turning right into a junction must
give way to vehicles coming out and any vehicle turning left into the
junction must give way to any vehicle turning right from the opposite
direction. As well as this they drive on the left in New Zealand, this
may sound like I am stating the obvious but there are numerous accidents
involving people who drive on the wrong side of the road and many with
Buying a car is not too difficult, there are car dealers in all of the
major cities plus cars are parked by the side of the road with for sale
notices on them . As well as this you could consider going to a back
packers lodge and see if any are for sale on the notice board. You might
be able to get a bargain from somebody who is about to leave the country
after their own journey around NZ.
If you buy from a dealer you can be spoilt for choice from an elderly
but reliable vehicle to a brand new one off the fore court. Japanese
cars are predominant in New Zealand but you can get a British one such
a Land Rover or a German built BMW.
All vehicles need a warrant of fitness, this is comparable to the MOT
in Britain. If you buy a trailer then this will need to have a warrant
of fitness as well. And not forgetting the road tax. When you buy a
vehicle the person selling the vehicle has to pay a registration fee
but as a buyer you might be asked to contribute or maybe even pay for
it yourself by the vender.
The cost of fuel in New Zealand is comparable with the prices in Britain
and fuel stations are dotted around NZ, even in some of the more remote
The comments about cars also applies to motorbikes, you might consider
taking your own by shipping it out and then arriving just as the motor
bike arrives and can be cheaper than actually buying one in the New
Finally you might consider trying to walk most of the way when traveling
around New Zealand. If you do you be rewarded with some of the most
picturesque views that very few people get to see, the only limit is
your imagination and your sense of adventure.
One word of warning though if you are going to be adventurous always
be safe and check the local weather, it can change very quickly in New