From pristine coastlines to historical townships, New Zealand is the perfect place for a road trip. If you don’t want to have to wait to save up a bunch of money, the country can certainly be explored on a budget by following our tips below.
Stick to nature: More often than not, it doesn’t cost a cent to enjoy nature, and luckily, New Zealand is full of it. Most travellers visit New Zealand specifically for its mountains, lakes, and beautiful scenery.
Accommodation: The main thing that can blow the budget is accommodation. A great money-saving tip is choosing to travel by campervan. Not only will you get to enjoy more of the country’s great outdoors, you won’t have to worry about paying for hotels.
Food: Food in New Zealand can be expensive depending on where you go. If you’re camping or campervanning, you can cook your own food along the way at campsites, rest stops, parks, beaches etc. Once you’ve picked up your rental in Auckland, stop in at New World or Countdown to stock up on essentials.
Rent an economy car: Another option is to rent a car that’s fuel efficient and within your budget. Usually, economy cars have better fuel efficiency than bigger cars, meaning you’ll not only save on the car itself but the fuel costs as well.
Get insurance: Although this is an additional upfront cost, it may save you a lot of money if your rental car is damaged or stolen. Click here to learn more about insurance.
Be careful of kilometre limits: Some rental cars and campervans come with kilometre limits. If you go over your kilometre limit, the cost can add up quickly, so it's a good idea to try to rent a vehicle that allows for unlimited mileage.
Recommended North Island road trip itinerary
Day One: Immerse yourself in culture and food in Auckland
Museum & art gallery
Auckland Botanic Gardens
Piha black sand beach
Where to stay:
Campsite: Ray’s Rest Camping Reserve
Day Two: Experience Cathedral Cove and natural wonders in the Coromandel Peninsula