It’s just across the famous “ditch, and remains a popular destination for many Australian travellers for good reason, but New Zealand is a remote country, and while it’s not exactly big, it’s important to plan any holiday there well – particularly if you want to save some money. Top of our list of tips is making sure you travel to New Zealand at the right time. The peak summer season is quite short, from December through to February only, making travel to popular tourist areas more expensive as well as busy, and the peak winter season is rather more quiet except for popular ski areas such as Queenstown. If you want to save on accommodation, consider travelling during the spring or autumn, keeping in mind that the weather may not be good most of the time, and the days will be shorter. There many options when it comes to flights, so another key tip is to keep an eye out for airfare sales with carriers including Air New Zealand, Virgin Australia and Qantas. Another option which you can consider for travel during the peak summer months is to take a cruise; itineraries include cruising around Australia from jumping off points including Auckland, cruising from Australia to New Zealand, or the reverse, and flying there, or back home, one-way, and cruising roundtrip from Australia, mostly Sydney, which eliminates flying altogether.
When it comes to money, use an ATM card to make withdrawals rather than changing currency at an exchange counter. Keep in mind, however, that you will usually have to pay a fee to make a withdrawal, so avoid taking out small amounts frequently. You also don’t have to tip in New Zealand as it isn’t customary, but if you feel like being generous a few dollars for waitstaff and in hotels the gesture goes a long way. When it comes to holiday activities, do your research before you leave home and work out the best prices, which are often advance purchases. And check out any free activities on offer too in key tourist destinations also, for example, entry into the Auckland Art Gallery and Wellington’s Te Papa museum. The i-SITE tourist offices are also staffed with local experts that can answer any questions, check accommodation rates for you, and even book tours seeking out any special deals or offers which can save you money. A good example of this are city passes in Auckland and Wellington, which discount entry into multiple city attractions for a set price. We’ve also covered saving money on getting around New Zealand, but one way to save on internal flights is to take the bus, or rent a car and self-drive. And when it comes to food and drink, skip buying mineral water in favour of refilling your own bottle with tap water as it’s perfectly safe to drink!