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Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Lewes, United...
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Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Thank you for your patience with this question, I know it's rather a 'how long is a piece of string' sort of query. I have already found lots of helpful info from searching the various NZ forums, but some of this is perhaps now out of date. Hence asking for more current pricing?

Hopefully, this will be of interest to other travellers, too.

We will be in NZ in High Season - Feb and Mar 2011. We will be travelling through both islands, and visiting cities as well as smaller places. Rough average prices are what I’m after rather than the cheapest possible price, or the costs in the poshest place in town!

A: How much is a light breakfast – coffee, juice, sandwich or pastry in a standard coffee shop, for one person?

B: How much is a fish and chip supper in a standard no frills place, with a cup of tea, for one person?

C: How much would a lunchtime chicken salad or cheese sandwich plus soft drink and coffee, per person, costs in a simple sit-down café/family style eaterie cost?

D: How much is a cream team with a pot of tea, in a tea room, per person?

E: How much would a 2 course evening dinner for 2 people, only drinking a beer or a glass of wine each in an ordinary restaurant in a city (Wellington, for example) cost?

F: How much would a dinner in a pizzeria cost – 2 pizzas, 2 desserts, 2 coffees and bottle of wine in a resort town (Queenstown or Rotorua, for example) cost?

G: How much would a good 3 course dinner for 2 people, with a bottle of wine cost in a smarter restaurant cost?

H: I understand VAT within the hospitality industry is due to go up before the start of 2011. How much by (percentage) so I know how much to add to the prices you will suggest to me?

I: Is there a general, noticeable different in costs between North Island and South Island? If so, which is the more expensive?

Any guidance will be appreciated.

New Zealand
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1. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Hi SWT :)

Tax is included in the listed price and there is no tipping so if the cost of a pizza is $15 then that is the total you pay. There are no added costs.

I shall not even attempt to answer all your questions. I suspect that you will find prices here higher than at home but as there is no tax or tip to add, it ends up about the same.

How much would it cost you for food/drinks/snacks/pubs in the UK if you ate every meal in small village and London restaurants for a month? Then budget that same amount for here :)

Wellington, NZ
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2. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

A - $10 for a simple breakfast, around $12-18 for a cooked breakfast in a cafe. Hotel breakfasts are quite a bit more. Coffee $3.50-$4. You can save money by buying cereal and milk at a supermarket.

B - F&C from a fish and chip shop ~$5/pp. From a pub - $15-20.

C - sandwiches vary - $2-$5 for a sandwich, around $7-10 for a panini.

D - don't often get cream teas here - more likely to see them in provincial towns. Good scones in Wellington cost $3.5-$4.

E - obviously hugely variable, but will be sub-$100.

F - pass

G - $150+

H - GST has already gone up.

I - I have never noticed a difference.

Christchurch, New...
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3. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Google a few menus - I looked at "The Dux de Lux", a popular Christchurch eatery - $16.50 for a medium pizza and $20-$25 for regular mains (pasta etc). Wine is about $6-$8 a glass.

Christchurch, New...
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4. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Having had 2 trips to Europe and 1 to Oz in the last few years, I think the number on the prices is the same as the numbers in NZ, it's just the currency that differs.

Meals will cost as much or as little as you like. You can save a few $ by walking 10 minutes from a main area (like anywhere). eg a there are restaurants on the Strip in ChCh that are very nice, but a 10 minute walk along the river will bring you to a quality pub type restaurant (The Bohemian) where the same quality meal is $10~15 a head cheaper, it's just their rent is cheaper. In Christchurch a lot of restaurants are BYO, where you can take wine from a supermarket and pay a corkage fee of between $2.50 and $7.

If you like "ethnic food" you will find excellent choice at vvery reasonable prices.

Wellington, New...
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5. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

When considering answering this question I put my costings down without checking the others and my expectations pretty much fall into line with the advice already given

Lewes, United...
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6. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Thanks very much to all of you for your thoughts or specific guide prices. This pretty much accords with my research. Here in the UK I would say I've noticed prices in many kinds of eateries - unless you're taking advantage of a special promo - has been creeping up, and food inflation in supermarkets is definitely noticeable, especially for staples, so I had wondered if a similar effect was happening in NZ to make the research I have done out of date.

I know you don't generally tip in NZ. Long may it stay that way!

Re the BYO comments: Apart from say the poshest type of restaurant, is it perfectly normal to take your own bottle everwhere? It is certainly something we hope to be able to do, as we plan to visit a few wineries along the way, won't be able to drink and drive, nor will be able to take the wine home, so we do intend to enjoy our liquid finds in a convivial spot like a restaurant at the next stop. Logically, pubs where selling drinks is their main objective, don't welcome BYO. Is this a correct assumption, or not?

Thanks again,

SWT

Auckland Central...
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7. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Hi

Throughout New Zealand are Returned Services Associations commonly called RSA for short. They are the equivalent I think of your British Legion in the IK

Most if not all RSAs serve meals. Not fine dining but not just pie and chips either - good square meals and inexpensive. Our local RSA at Piha is particularly good and main courses are typically between $15.00 and $20.00. RSAs welcome visitors and are good place to meet the locals.

New Zealand
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8. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

Very few restaurants (if any) in Wanaka/Queenstown allow BYO. We are in the heart of excellent wine country and most local restaurants have deals in place with the local wineries.

Christchurch, New...
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9. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

You need to check with each individual restaurant about the BYO thing. There are restaurants that only have BYO licences and they will clearly be labeled as such, or listed in guides or the yellow pages.

Some fully licenced restaurants also allow BYO, this is not related to the part of the market they are in, ie it could be a pricy place or a budget place. Supermarkets tend to have the best range of wines at the best prices. I have been to Cellar doors in Queenstown and Nelson to find the same wine cheaper down the road at the New World who may have it as a "loss leader".

Avoid embarasment and ask if it is possible and what the corkage fees are.

10. Re: Budgeting for meals on a long trip

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