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Camper or hotel??

Blackthorn, United...
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Camper or hotel??

We are planning a 2 month trip to New Zealand and would appreciate advice, is it cheaper to hire a camper and tour everywhere or hire a car and find accommodation along the way??

Can anymore recommend a good hire company??

Look forward to hearing from you with your views.

UK
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1. Re: Camper or hotel??

Am planning our seventh visit to NZ (for 2 months like you) and always use the hire car and motels/hotels route. The range of motel accom has to be seen to be believed and ranges from luxury to basic.

We did hire a van on an earlier trip and found it a bit of a liability, eg when basing ourselves in a particular area for a few nights having to take the van around with us when sightseeing, and so have opted for the flexibility of a car. Certainly tests the strength of any relationship lol!!!!

Perhaps switch between the two for different parts of you trip? There many people who really like campervans so see what they have to say.

Edited: 20 September 2010, 15:00
Edinburgh, Scotland
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2. Re: Camper or hotel??

Agree with last poster, the motels in New Zealand are great - brilliant facilities and very good value (we stayed at Pebble Beach in Napier and Hananui Lodge in Russell, and they were our favourite stays on our trip). People we met on out trip who were travelling by camper van said that they wished they'd broken the balance a bit and stayed in accommodation a few times - more room, showers, places to sit out, comfier bed etc. The other thing you could do is use some of the internal flights - we flew from Queenstown to Auckland, Whangerei to Rotorua and Napier to Auckland, and hired cars at different places in both the North and South Islands. All the flights were short, good value and meant we saved time and money (hire and petrol). My advice to you would be to mix and match a bit - accommodation and travel. And don't try to do too much - that was another complaint of the campervan folk we met - they were spending an awful lot of time on the road. Think it's more of a temptation when you have a van. You can always go back (we will). Enjoy, it's a fabulous country.

New Zealand
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for South Island
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3. Re: Camper or hotel??

The most affordable option is to rent a car and stay in motels, backpackers or campground cabins. I also consider it the more convenient and flexible option :)

Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: Camper or hotel??

For a shorter trip it might be better to rent a car and stay in a motel. But for two months you might consider a campervan, as you would be able to negotiate a low price and have lots of flexibility on where and when you go.

Renting a car (avg $80-100/day) + motel (avg $125-150)= at least the cost of a campervan. Holiday parks for the campervan $15-20/night but you are selfcontained and have more freedom to explore.

A great idea is to do both :)

South Island
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5. Re: Camper or hotel??

If you hire a car from some of the second tier companies for a two month period

they will adjust the hire rate down to about $20 @ day. These are not new cars but they are good value. Check out Juicy or Apex for a quote.

Edited: 21 September 2010, 01:05
Sydney, Australia
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6. Re: Camper or hotel??

My husband and I returned from 18 days in NZ on Sunday. We hired a campervan but when we had mechanical trouble our last 3 days we then changed to a car/motel. Having just done both we feel the cost is comparable - campervan/camp fees/more fuel = motel/cheaper car/less fuel. The motels we stayed at all had little kitchens so we could still prepare our own meals, and like others have said better beds/showers and more flexibility if the camp ground wasn't in the centre of town you had to take the campervan. The downside of car/motel is that you have to pack up every day and can't just stop and put the kettle on for a cuppa whenever you like. We enjoyed both but think next time we would opt for the car/motel.

South Island
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7. Re: Camper or hotel??

Hi Jendarmy

Thanks for your info. Can you tell us if you were able to use your campervan for any freedom camping?

Sydney, Australia
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8. Re: Camper or hotel??

No we didn't end up free camping. It got dark about 6pm and as it was very cold at night and in the mornings we decided to stay in campgrounds so we could have power for the heater/lights. If we had free camped there was a gas heater in the van and any lights would have been powered from the van battery. If it had been summer we would have. Except for Queenstown and Dunedin which were crowded most of the camp grounds we choose only had a few other campers staying which was good so everyone was not on top of each other.

9. Re: Camper or hotel??

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