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Camper Van Hire Advice

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Manchester, UK
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40 posts
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Camper Van Hire Advice

Hello,

Wondered if anyone could give me some advice on hiring a Campervan in NZ in January 2008. We'll be arriving in Christchurch on 3rd Jan 2008 and staying for one night in the city before picking up a Campervan on the morning of the 4th Jan.

I want to reach Picton on Sat 12th Jan where we would give back the Camper and catch the ferry over to Wellington.

If anyone could advise me on any of the following it would be much appreciated.

1. Is it worth getting a van with a shower? We don't plan to book any campsites prior to getting there and although we have an idea of things we want to do we want to be pretty free to go where we want to.

2. Are you able to just pull in at a nice spot and settle for the night or do you have to find a designated campsite to stay at?

3. Can anyone give me an idea of which companies are good to hire from? There are so many to choose from on the web!

4. As its peak season if we want to stay at a campsite will we struggle to get in or are there enough around if you are prepared to stay slightly out of the main areas

5. What are the average prices of the campsites in NZ? I presume it depends on the facilities.

Also (being cheeky now!) can anyone advise on how long the ferry takes and how often they run for foot passengers. Also earliest and latest times would be great.

Many Thanks

Lee and Michelle

Queenstown, New...
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1. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

You have to stay in designated areas to 'freedom camp'.

The camp grounds will be very busy in January, so you would be best to book ahead.

http://www.top10.co.nz/

http://www.holidayparks.co.nz/

As for ferrys, there are 2 companies. The trip is about 3 hours. Have a look at the websites for timetables and fares.

http://www.bluebridge.co.nz/

http://www.interislander.co.nz/Default.aspx

Te Anau
Destination Expert
for South Island, Te Anau
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2,844 posts
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2. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

All Motor Camps have shower/toilet faciluties and kitchens, so a shower is probably not necesarry. You might find a onboad toilet handy though.

As a rule 'Freedom Camping" is allowed except in towns and built up areas. However you should exercise caution if camping in remote areas. We have our share of yobbos just like anywhere else, and there have been some unpleasant incidents.

Maui and Britz are the two biggies, however there are dozens of companies, and I'm not aware of any dodgy ones. All commercial vehicles undergo a 6 monthly Certificate of Fittness test, so your van will be safe to drive. The test does not cover the quality of the van, so it could still be rough. As a rule the more you pay the better the quality.

You might have difficulty getting into some of the more popular parks during peak season, particularly in "Tourist" spots (Queenstown, Te Anau, etc)

Can't help with cost, but i would think about $20 per night for two persons.

There are no purely passenger ferries, they all carry vehicles as well. Have a look at www.interislander.co.nz for fares & schedules.

Manchester, UK
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40 posts
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3. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

Having looked around a fair few camper van websites I'm finding it

difficult to get a price where I can pick up in Christchurch and drop

off

in Picton. Those I have found charge you an extra $200-$400 to then

're-patriate' the vehicle back to Christchurch.

Does anyone think I would be better picking up and dropping off in

Christchurch and then getting either a flight/train/bus to Wellington?

How much are internal flights between the cities, how frequent are they

and

how long does it take?

Manchester, UK
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40 posts
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4. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

Think I've decided to use escaperentals.co.nz now which have funky coloured vans!

Going to pick up in Christchurch and drop off in Auckland..

Can't wait!

Devon, UK
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1,054 posts
12 reviews
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5. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

Hi

We were confused about all different companies but have booked ours with countrywidemotorhomes.co.nz

It is important to also look at insurance and what there excess is as this can make a difference to costings. With countrywide motorhomes they include a complimentary barbecue and outdoor table & chairs. We decided to opt for a campervan with shower and toilet just incase we got delayed somewhere and wanted to stop longer, which then gives us more freedom. Let us know how you get on as we will not be going until the middle of Feb and would be interest to hear your favourite places etc

Annette

Manchester, UK
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6. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

Will let you know!

7. Re: Camper Van Hire Advice

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