Visiting New Zealand On a Budget

Traveling New Zealand on a Budget

New Zealand is a popular tourist destination. There are many sights and wildlife found only in these Pacific islands. The cost can add up fast. Here are a few tips to take when traveling to New Zealand on a budget.

Before the Trip

Make sure to always plan out your trip. Taking the time to look through everything before you go can save hundreds of dollars in the long run. When planning travelers should look at what time of year you want to go.

Like many destinations in the world, summer travel can be the most expensive. The busiest time of year yet is winter. This is because the climate and seasons are opposite of those found in the northern part of the world. When everyone else is freezing in winter, New Zealand is the perfect place for a day at the beach. This means that the best times to travel to New Zealand is during the spring or fall. There are fewer crowds and prices are on the lower side.

New Zealand, South Island, Abel Tasman National Park.

There are two main islands in New Zealand. Try to focus on one of the islands to visit. It may look small but there is a lot to cover on both islands. It will affect your budget if travelers try to see both at the same time. Pay attention to deals and promotions on airfare. You could get better pricing for booking earlier. But there are also some airlines that offer promotions that could give you even better deals. Remember to take credit cards with you. Not only will they help in the case of an emergency but most places in other countries like plastic better. Plus you won’t have to worry about exchange rates. When withdrawing money uses the ATM. It’s easier and faster than the exchange center. Remember that tipping is not the custom in New Zealand. So save your money.


There are many places in New Zealand where a traveler can lay their head for the night. One option is the cheap hostels everywhere in the country. Locals will call these backpackers. This is because it is generally a place where travelers can bunk up with other guests for a cheaper price. There is also the use of a kitchen among the guests as well that will take into account the money saved on food. Another accommodation that is popular in the area is camping. Not only are there areas that are cheap to camp but the country offers free camping in some areas as well.

There is one accommodation that you won’t find in many places other than New Zealand. It is an option where travelers can stay at local farms for free for a little labor. There is always work to do on a farm. Many of them in New Zealand welcomes the help and will accommodate travelers with a free place to stay. If a hotel is what you’re looking for, then rest assured. They are available as well.


Like many major cities, public transportation is available. It is the most efficient and cheapest way to travel. There are plenty of buses to choose from and they travel to all areas of the island as well. If staying outside the city then try renting from a small car rental. Some of the big chains seen around the world bump their prices up here.


Frequent the grocery stores to save money on food. You will want to eat out a few times but try packing a picnic or cooking in instead of going out. A lot of money is saved that way. Eating in restaurants is expensive everywhere in New Zealand. New Zealand is a popular location for backpackers.

Happy hours and discounts on alcohol and appetizers are at the many pubs and bars found on the islands. Make sure you get a drink at the best times to take advantage of this.


Remember that some of the things that are on your list to do may not fit in the budget. That boat cruise and dolphin swim may sound fun but there are plenty of things that you can do for free. Take in the wildlife at many of the free national parks. There are even a few hikes to waterfalls that will give great views as well. There are tourists centers in every city of the country. Take the time to stop in. They will offer you discounts, coupons and will even help to book tours and adventures for you. Look into city passes that are available in the main cities to save some money on attractions that are a must do. This is the area where travelers spend the most money to take advantage of coupons and bonuses. Choose the right tour and find hotspots for free wi-fi instead of paying the extra pricing for it at hotels.

New Zealand is a land with amazing wildlife, great beaches, and luxurious sights. Your trip will be worth the time spent planning and arranging your itinerary. Plan a trip to New Zealand on a budget. You will be glad.

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About the author

I am Ian Leaf, an experienced finance professional, a talented photographer, an artist and a renowned blogger. I have traveled extensively in Europe and around the world savoring exotic dishes and capturing memorable events. I blog about my photography, travel experiences, technology and related topics at