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View Full Version : New Zealand : motorhome or car hire & B&B


hania
13th of September 2009 (Sun), 05:50
We are off to NZ feb/march. Have the option of the above - Motothome would mean only unpacking once but I feel may be very isolating - won't meet any/many New Zealanders.

Car hire seems quite expensive - any views from members who have done either/both?

We will be goint to North Island & then South Island, flying in to Aukland & leaving from Chriostchurch - where my daughter is.

Moppie
13th of September 2009 (Sun), 05:57
Costs work out about the same for either option once you pay for motels etc if you rent a car.

The motorhome gives you more freedom in where you can go and stay, especially around the South Island.

Renting a car and staying in motels can mean more comforts, but around Feb/March you may find many places are full.

You won't have any problems meeting people using either option, infact I imagine you will meet more people in the motorhome.
There is a very strong comunitie of campervan users here, and they are all a very friendly bunch.
Most of the camping grounds have campervan facilities, so you can plug into power and water, and use thier washing/toilet facilities etc.
These places all have common rooms, and kitchens etc as well.

If you camp somewhere off the road, near a lake etc, chances are you won't be the only camper there, and you won't haven problem meeting people.

Of course if you want some privacy that will be respected to ;)

hania
13th of September 2009 (Sun), 09:02
Costs work out about the same for either option once you pay for motels etc if you rent a car.

The motorhome gives you more freedom in where you can go and stay, especially around the South Island.

Renting a car and staying in motels can mean more comforts, but around Feb/March you may find many places are full.

You won't have any problems meeting people using either option, infact I imagine you will meet more people in the motorhome.
There is a very strong comunitie of campervan users here, and they are all a very friendly bunch.
Most of the camping grounds have campervan facilities, so you can plug into power and water, and use thier washing/toilet facilities etc.
These places all have common rooms, and kitchens etc as well.

If you camp somewhere off the road, near a lake etc, chances are you won't be the only camper there, and you won't haven problem meeting people.

Of course if you want some privacy that will be respected to ;)

many thanks - thats just the info i needed

pleb1024
16th of September 2009 (Wed), 10:08
many thanks - thats just the info i needed

I'd also add - it will be more effort to drive the motorhome round the south island than a car. So if you do end up with the motorhome, the travel times will be slightly off, and please pull over occasionally to allow any traffic behind you to pass, as getting past motorhomes can be interesting on 2 lane roads through mountains.

Hope you enjoy your vist to NZ

akiwi
16th of September 2009 (Wed), 10:17
I'd also add - it will be more effort to drive the motorhome round the south island than a car. So if you do end up with the motorhome, the travel times will be slightly off, and please pull over occasionally to allow any traffic behind you to pass, as getting past motorhomes can be interesting on 2 lane roads through mountains.

Hope you enjoy your vist to NZ
Haha.. I take it you had a car then.
In New Zealand there is also a good network of Youth hostels and Backpackers lodges where you can get reasnable accomodation at relatively low cost.
My last trip around the south Island with my wife we used rent a wreck .. or something similar for a cheap transport. Had a tent for some nights, or stayed in motels, cabins or backpackers lodges if we didn't want to camp.

pleb1024
16th of September 2009 (Wed), 12:31
Haha.. I take it you had a car then.
In New Zealand there is also a good network of Youth hostels and Backpackers lodges where you can get reasnable accomodation at relatively low cost.
My last trip around the south Island with my wife we used rent a wreck .. or something similar for a cheap transport. Had a tent for some nights, or stayed in motels, cabins or backpackers lodges if we didn't want to camp.

Up until 5-6 months ago, I was a christchurch local, so have had many a km stuck behind a tourist doing 65kph in a camper with no chance of passing. I don't have a problem with campers driving a safe speed for them, it's just when you get the drivers who don't know to pull over once in a while it's a little frustrating!! Though probably with a photographer on board it will probably be more the case of their other half saying 'but you just stopped 20 mins ago'.

My comment intended to highlight the driving conditions - as after all - the SI at least has probably <40 km of motorway (and 1/2 of that is just north of christchurch). The 'highways' in the SI of NZ by any stretch of the imagination don't come close to the usual defintion of 'highway' - which may impact some drivers decisions about whether to do the camper/motel trip. Anyone doing the chch->queenstown->glaciers->chch round trip won't even see any motorway in about 1000+ km of travel.

Course all this is making me a little homesick....

Daniel

mitch.mccabe
23rd of March 2012 (Fri), 07:46
Hi What did you end up choosing? And how was it? I'm there South Island in 2 weeks and Motorhoming it with wife and kids for 2 weeks.....

RPCrowe
24th of March 2012 (Sat), 17:19
I have not traveled in N.Z. but, have traveled extensively around the USA in my motorhome. Unless, I am towing a small car, I really do not have the freedom, traveling in the motor home, that I have in a car. I often see really photogenic sites along the roadway but, do not have room to pull over and park the RV like I could in a car.

Justaddwata
24th of March 2012 (Sat), 17:57
Wife and I rented a car and toured the south Island a couple of years back. While a small motor home would work I dare say a few of the roads, sights, and turn arounds would have been a little tricky. Just about every bridge is one way too (can be interesting at time!!). I have zero regrets about doing the car/hotel tour.

Am jealous though - would return to NZ in a heartbeat - LOVE the country and the people!

Anzxio
25th of March 2012 (Sun), 15:28
I think south island is far easier in a car. There are so many good cheap places to stay that I don't see why so many people bother with the added annoyance of a camper! Some of the roads aren't exactly camper friendly!

mitch.mccabe
25th of March 2012 (Sun), 19:24
I think south island is far easier in a car. There are so many good cheap places to stay that I don't see why so many people bother with the added annoyance of a camper! Some of the roads aren't exactly camper friendly!

Yeah granted, but with 3 kids you have to get at least a hotel with 2 rooms which adds to the cost VERY quickly. Hopefully my trip would be ok, My kids are great travellers, We live in outback NSW, Australia so we are used to driving long distances to do anything.

RPCrowe
4th of April 2012 (Wed), 23:18
There is another thought to driving a motorhome. If you see a sight you want to photograph, you cannot always find a safe and convenient spot to pull off the road and shoot. I have thousands of lovely images stired in my brain because I couldn't safely stop to photograph them...