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Travel Information on New Zealand



Arrival Every person arriving into New Zealand must complete an arrival card.


All visitors to New Zealand must carry a passport that is valid for at least three months beyond the intended date of departure. Non New Zealand passport holders can obtain entry requirements from the New Zealand Immigration Service on


Customs Allowances

Travellers must be 17 years or older to be eligible for alcohol and tobacco allowances. A traveller can import the following quantities of tobacco products and alcoholic beverages free of Customs charges, providing the goods accompany them:

Cigarettes, Cigars, Tobacco

50 cigarettes, or 50 grams of tobacco, or cigars, or a mixture of all three weighing not more than 50 grams.

Alcoholic Beverages

4.5 litres of wine or 4.5 litres of beer plus three bottle each containing not more than 1125 ml of spirits, liqueur, or other spirituous beverages. For further information see



Trading banks are open Monday to Friday between 9.30 am and 4.30 pm (except public holidays). Banks are closed on weekends, but ATMs are open.

Credit Cards: All international credit cards are accepted.

ATMs: ATM cards will work as long as they are encoded with a four-digit PIN prior to leaving home and have the Plus, Maestro or Cirrus symbol on the back.

Travellers' cheques: May be changed at trading banks, hotels, and large stores in the main cities and tourist areas.




The official currency is the New Zealand Dollar ($NZ). The basic unit of one dollar is divided into 100 cents; the coins are 10c, 20c, 50c, $1 and $2. Notes are $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.  A currency converter is available at the website address under Money Matters.



A value-added tax of 15% applies to all goods and services (GST). This tax is usually included in the advertised price of an item.


Departure Tax: A tax of NZ$25 must be paid at the airport when you leave New Zealand, unless you are leaving from Auckland airport. Please note that this tax is only included in your ticket price if you are departing from Auckland International Airport. Children under 12 years of age are exempt from the departure tax fee.


Business Hours & Shopping

New Zealand offices and businesses operate Monday to Friday between 8.30 am and 5 pm, though some tourist agencies and airlines have longer hours.


Main Shopping hours:

Monday – Friday: 9.00 am to 5.30 pm

Weekends:         10.00 am to 4.00 pm

Late Nights:        Thursday and Friday

Tourist Areas
: Most stores open in the evenings

New Zealand is a great place to shop and to make some unique purchases. New Zealand fashion is innovative and vibrant with a combination of influences from Maori and the Pacific Islands.


Key Purchases: Traditional Maori carvings in different mediums, sheepskin mats and jackets, outdoor clothing (active-wear), honey, wine and cheese.


Eating Out

New Zealand is on the Pacific Rim and the restaurants are famous for their fusion cuisine of Asian, European and other international influences. Vegetarians are well catered for with most restaurants happy to adapt their menus. In the larger cities and tourist towns there are also Restaurants that cater for Halal meals. Restaurant kitchens usually close at 11.00 pm but in smaller towns this could be earlier.


Local specialties include lamb, cervena, seafood, cheese, honey and kiwifruit.



What to wear

New Zealand's relaxed lifestyle lends itself to an informal style of dress. Even in restaurants and nightclubs, casual clothes are acceptable.


A pullover is useful for summer evenings which can be cool. A lightweight rain jacket or anorak often comes in handy, a sunhat, sunglasses and strong sunscreen are essential in summer, and warm gloves and a hat are advisable in winter.


Medical & emergency services

In emergencies dial 111 to summon police, fire or ambulance services. For non-emergency calls, full instructions appear in the front of telephone directories and beside public telephones. There is no charge for this service.


Hospital Service: New Zealand's medical and hospital services are both public and private. Please note – medical services are not free to visitors. It is strongly recommended that visitors purchase health insurance.


Medicines: A "Chemist" is the New Zealand term for a pharmacist and they open during normal shopping hours. Most cities have urgent dispensaries open outside these hours and these are listed in the front of the telephone book under Hospitals. Bites and stings: There are no snakes or dangerous wild animals in New Zealand. The only poisonous creature is the very rare Katipo spider. Sandflies and Mosquitos, can be annoying in some areas, but insect repellent will take care of them.


Sunburn: The clarity of the air in New Zealand allows more ultraviolet radiation to reach the earth than in the Northern Hemisphere. It is important to wear sunglasses and a hat if spending extended time in the sun and always use sunblock even if the day is overcast.


Drivers Licences

Reciprocal driving rights exist between New Zealand and most other countries. If hiring a vehicle all drivers must produce a valid full driver's licence, which has been held for at least 12 months, at the commencement of the rental. If the national drivers licence is not in English, a valid international driving permit is also required. In most cases drivers will need to be 21 years of age.


Driving: Motorists drive on the left-hand side of the road and vehicles are right-hand drive vehicles. It is compulsory to wear seatbelts. The speed limit is 100 km on open roads and 50 km through towns unless otherwise stated. Check out the New Zealand website for details on our Road Code, cycling safety and other general motoring information.


Email and facsimile facilities

Most hotels offer the above. There are also internet cafes located in all the tourist towns. Tipping If you enjoy excellent service during your stay in New Zealand it is perfectly in order to offer a tip as a reflection of your appreciation. Electricity Supply New Zealand's AC electricity supply operates at 230/240 volts, 50 hertz, the same as Australia. Hotels and motels provide 110 volt 20 watt AC sockets for electric razors. An adaptor or converter is necessary to operate all other electrical equipment. Water supply

All New Zealand cities and towns have excellent public water supplies; tap (Faucet) water is fresh and safe to drink.




Daylight Saving


Daylight saving begins on the first Sunday in October and ends on the third Sunday in March. All clocks are turned forward 1 hour in October to (GMT+13) and return to (GMT+12) in March.


Climate New Zealand is a temperate country with four distinct seasons.



December - February  


 14°C - 28°C



March - May


 10°C - 24°C



June - August


 09°C - 20°C



September - November


 12°C - 22°C



Taxis owned by a number of companies and independent operators run from stands or on call by telephone 24 hours a day in urban areas. It is easier to telephone for one than to hail one but in large cities and popular tourist towns taxi ranks do exist.

Mountain ranges and hill country dominate New Zealand's landscape; one of the most striking physical features is the Southern Alps. These, along with fiords, glaciers and lakes, and the coastal plains of Canterbury and Southland, add to the variety of the South Island scenery. In the North Island, the volcanic interior contains New Zealand's largest lake, Lake Taupo, and most of the country's active volcanoes. Hot springs, geysers and mud pools also form part of the volcanic system centred around Rotorua.

New Zealand is similar in land size to Britain, Japan or Colorado.
New Zealand Public Holidays

Most businesses and all banks close on public holidays.  All shope are closed on Christmas Day and Good Friday except for a few dairies (convenience stores) and some petrol stations.

Public Holidays
  2017   2018
New Years  & Boxing Day
  1-3 JAN
   01 - 02 JAN
Waitangi Day
  FRI 06 FEB
   MON 06 FEB
Good Friday
  FRI 14 APR
   FRI 14 APR
Easter Monday
  MON 17 APR
   MON 17 APR
Anzac Day
  TUE 25 APR
   TUE 25 APR
Queens Birthday
  MON 05 JUN
   MON 05 JUN
Labour Day
  MON 23 OCT
   MON 23 OCT
Christmas  & Boxing Day
  25 - 26 DEC
   25 - 26 DEC


School Holidays

Many New Zealanders travel during the school holidays. Visitors planning to arrive in New Zealand during school holiday period are advised to book ahead for accommodation in the more popular holiday areas.


School Holiday Dates 2017
14 - 28 April
  7 - 21 July
29 Sep - 13 Oct
  14 Dec 2016 - 6 Feb 2018




English is the common language of New Zealanders.  


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