New Zealand, Maori Aotearoa, is a state in the southwestern part of the Pacific Ocean, Pacific. It consists of two large islands, North and South, and other smaller islands. The nearest neighboring state is about 2000 km from Australia.
Basic information about New Zealand
December to March
New Zealand Dollar
Tickets from 650 GBP
Why New Zealand
New Zealand is a country that has a very good reputation among destinations to which travelers from all over Europe, North America and especially Asia go. This is because it is a country with beautiful and clean nature, a safe country and at the same time a highly industrially and agriculturally developed country. And it is also relatively farthest. Where to go next? Perhaps only in Antarctica or the Land of Fire …
New Zealand offers travelers a wide range of opportunities to explore the country, get to know it and have fun. Regardless of the passenger’s financial situation. The most expensive item is, of course, a ticket and then payment for transportation between the various places that travelers visit. However, other expenses can be adjusted according to the type of overnight stay travelers choose and what attractions they intend to visit.
The capital of New Zealand
The capital of New Zealand is Wellington. It lies on the southwestern tip of the North Island and is the southernmost capital in the world. The city is relatively small, the population is only about 180 thousand. However, it is part of a larger agglomeration, which extends about 50 km to the northeast. The most common means of transport to the city is by plane or boat. Massive ferries to South Island leave from Picton from Wellington at any moment.
Wellington’s population is predominantly European and Asian. Many of them work in the port, but also in the state administration.
The city has a rich history, which Jules Verne has already situated the beginnings of his stories here, for example, the heroes of his novel 2 years of vacation leave Wellington. However, the city will not inspire ordinary tourists who come to the port by ferry. Before it reaches the historic center, it must be wandered through the unattractive and busy harbor and the dock buildings that surround the harbor.
Flag of New Zealand
The flag of New Zealand is formed by a blue rectangle, in the upper corner of which is placed the symbol of the United Kingdom of Great Britain. In the next fluttering part are four red stars, arranged in the form of the constellation of the Southern Cross.
Population of New Zealand
Both islands of Great Zealand have a population of almost 4.5 million, a third of whom live in Auckland. Most of New Zealand’s white people are descendants of colonizers who came to New Zealand for a new life. However, many Asians also live here, and of course the Maories, the original inhabitants of the islands.
Holidays in New Zealand
In New Zealand, we distinguish the following types of holidays: national, local, Christian/traditional. There are most public holidays, there are a total of 10. When it is a public holiday, the day is off and most shops are closed. Local holidays are not valid for the whole country, they are local/regional celebrations. On thoes days, only people from these area have days off. Public holidays are:
- January, 1 - New Years Day - New Year
- January, 2 - Day after New Years Day - the second day after the New Year
- February, 6. - Waitangi Day - New Zealand’s national holiday
- moving date - Good Friday
- moving date - Easter Monday
- April, 25 - Anzac Day - War Victims Day
- Monday, June 1 - Queen’s Birthday
- 4th Monday in October - Labor Day - Labor Day
- December, 25 - Christmas Day - 1st Christmas Day
- December, 26. - Boxing Day - 2nd Christmas holiday
Emblem of New Zealand
The emblem consists of a shield, in the first corner of which is the constellation of the Southern Cross, in the second a golden fleece on a red background, in the third a grain sheaf and in the fourth a crossed threshing machine and a hammer. There is a pole on the axis and three sailboats on it. The crown of St. Edward hovers above the shield. Shieldbearers are a woman in a white robe with the national flag over her shoulder and a Maori chief with a taiaha spear. Shieldbearers stand on a fern with a ribbon with the inscription New Zealand.
The time difference between New Zealand and the UK is 12 hours, between New Zealand and Washington D.C is 18 hours. The clock can be forward 1 hour in both directions during the period of daylight saving time (Daylight saving time is not usually the same in different countries).
Currency of New Zealand
The New Zealand Dollar (NZD) is the legal tender in New Zealand. One NZD has 100 cents. We can find coins for 10, 20 and 50 cents and for NZD 1 and 2. The banknotes are: NZD 5, 10, 20, 50, 100. NZD 1 could be purchased in Great Britain in 2019 for GBP 0,53.
Prices in New Zealand
The biggest item for tourists in New Zealand is usually transportation and overnight fees. Gasoline/diesel are relatively cheap, but a larger item is car/caravan rentals or transportation buses, trains, ferries. The price of fuel in 2019 was similar to that in England, the rental of the cheapest caravan was NZD 100 per day, the price for transport was around the same in our country.
When it comes to accommodation, the most expensive are hotels. Here the price per room per day is about NZD 100. It pays to use campsites of various categories (purple/blue/green), where you can spend the night either for free or for a fee from NZD 8 to 32.
Eating out in restaurants is as relatively expensive as in these in the UK and the US. However, fish and chips can be purchased for NZD 12. If travelers cook for themselves, they will take advantage of the large selection of supermarkets, loaded with goods, as in Western Europe. Prices are relatively similar to those in England and the US. You can buy bread for 3, a bottle of good wine for NZD 10 to 15. Fruits and vegetables are expensive, but cheeses surprise you with their delicious taste and good price. The most sold things are breads, which are expensive as a bottle of wine. The locals call them plastic.
Visa to New Zealand
Travelers from the UK do not need a visa to stay up to 6 months. However, you must apply for NZeTA (New Zealand Electronic Travel Authority) registration and pay NZD 12 and 35 tourist tax for registration. NZeTA is approved electronically - usually within 3 days. However, there is an exception - travelers with a study or work visa and travelers who have an approved tourist visa do not have to apply for NZeTA.
For travelers from the US, International Visitor Conservation and Tourism Levy (IVL) which costs NZD 35 is required for U.S citizens who do not transit New Zealand on a transit visa or transit ETA. You need an NZeTA if you travel to or transit through New Zealand under the visa waiver program with the 3 processing days costing NZD 9 via mobile app and 12 via website.
To complete the NZeTA and thus to enter, you must have: a passport, which must be valid for at least 3 months after your planned return from New Zealand, impunity, sufficient funds and a return ticket.
You can enter the NZeta form either via the mobile application (where you will save some money) or classically via a website. Don’t forget to arrange NZeT before the trip, without it you can not be on a plane.
Visa for a visit=Visitor Visa - https://www.immigration.govt.nz/
Interesting facts about New Zealand
At first glance, this does not seem so, but New Zealand is quite vast, and it is very long. The distance between the tip of the North Island and the last rock of the South is almost 1200 km. It’s like from London to Madrid.
Travelers should decide which part they want to travel to and which to leave for another time. Lovers of rugged nature, mountains, waters and beautiful scenery should focus on the South Island, especially its southernmost part. Those who would like to travel the whole country in less than 2 months, should realize that they will see everything as from the express train and rather choose which part to skip. Whether they pass the attractive southern part of the South Island above, or start in the middle of the South Island and travel to the north for the beautifully warm dunes that are at the tip of the North Island.
New Zealand has beautiful and clean nature and everyone is trying to preserve it in this way for future generations. That is why there are instructions everywhere - even at airports - on how to behave in nature. Under a heavy fine, it is forbidden to throw rubbish in the wild, pollute it with feces and start a fire outside the designated areas. It is not allowed to spend the night in the wild, you can only use camps that are designed for that.
When planning daily routes, it is necessary to take into account not only the distances between the individual locations to be covered, but also the condition of the roads. There are only a few highways in the country, all are only on the North Island. Very high speeds cannot be expected on local and state roads. However, both islands are mountainous and there are a lot of serpentines waiting for the drivers. So there are not many straight and well-arranged sections. The roads are in very good condition, but are usually narrower and a significant number of sections are under repair. The repair is carried out alternately on one side of the road. Instead of traffic lights, a guy with a sign comes and stops the vehicles. And beware - in New Zealand you drive on the left.
You can stop during the journey in the car parks with a view, which are about every 20 km and usually have clean restrooms. Elsewhere - especially on the South Island - there is not much to stop along the route. And what is the reason? Right next to the road is a fence - a fence for cattle - or a bush or a ditch. And the distance between the individual gas station from it can be more than 100 km.
The CampeMate mobile application is a valuable tool for car and caravan travelers. It can be downloaded for free and offers a wide range of accommodation in the selected location. Especially for those who use caravans, it is optimal to prepare routes with this application in advance. If they want to save and not pay for an overnight stay, they can use the so-called green camps, which are designed just for them. The application contains a description of each campsite with an indication of whether it is equipped with a toilet, drinking water and the conditions for camping. For each, the number of places is stated, ie how many caravans can be in the camp at the same time and the number of nights, how many caravans can stay.
Travelers from the UK and US do not need any vaccinations. Vaccination against is only recommended both types of jaundice.
It is said that it is safe in New Zealand that no one has to worry about being robbed or assaulted. However, there are known cases where this has not been the case. Thieves are just everywhere, and there are only a few in this country. Nevertheless, it is recommended that travelers do not leave their vehicles in abandoned places for a long time without control and that they always take their valuables and documents with them. In large car parks, it is useful to check whether it is monitored by cameras.
Where to call in case of emergency?
Rescue service, fire brigade, police: 111
The New Zealand phone code is +64.
Contacts at the British High Commission New Zealand:
British High Commission 44 Hill Street Thorndon Wellington 6011 New Zealand
Phone: +64 (0) 4 924 2888 Further contacts can be found at https://www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-high-commission-wellington
Contacts at the U.S Embassy of Cnsulate in New Zealand, Cook Islands and Niue:
U.S. Embassy Wellington 29 Fitzherbert Terrace Thorndon Wellington New Zealand
Phone: +64 4 462 6000 Further contacts can be found at https://nz.usembassy.gov/our-relationship/our-ambassador/