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Posted on 30/01/2024 17:11 PM

A cross-country road trip with a campervan hire in New Zealand is the dream travel experience for many outdoor enthusiasts.

Join us as we delve into campervan tips and tricks, uncovering the secrets to make your trip through New Zealand's stunning landscapes maximally comfortable and enjoyable.


Planning Your Trip

Choosing the Right Campervan

Understanding the diverse range of campervans available, from compact converted mini-vans to spacious motorhomes, allows you to align your selection with the scale of your adventure. Consider size, amenities, and a budget that caters to personal preferences and travel requirements.

Remember to book in advance! The last thing you want is to arrive in the country to see that another excited family has snatched up your desired motorhome, leaving you with your second option.

When making your booking, check the inclusions with your rental. Onboard WiFi or essential items like bed linen and dishwashing liquid will make your home on wheels more comfortable and let you know what you must bring beforehand.

Essential Packing Tips

Campervan tips and tricks like maximising space and minimising clutter are paramount in the compact confines of a motorhome. Create a comprehensive packing checklist covering essentials such as clothing suitable for varied weather, personal hygiene items, necessary documents, and camping gear based on your trip's needs.

Use collapsible or multi-purpose items to save space and packing cubes to organise clothes efficiently. Investing in storage solutions like hanging organisers is wise, ensuring your essentials are within reach.


Driving Tips

Campervan Tips and Tricks - Motorhome Driving Carefully on Curved Road

In New Zealand, the speed limit is typically 100 km/hr on motorways and outside urban areas, while cities and towns cap it at 50 km/hr. However, keep an eye out for variations, as in some areas, you might encounter 110 km/hr or 60 km/hr limits. Always adjust your speed according to the posted signs to ensure a secure and compliant driving experience, especially around painfully sharp turns, steep mountain roads, and winding roads.

Adapt Your Driving Style

Adapting your driving style to New Zealand requires a shift in mentality, especially if you come from a country that drives on the right side of the road. In New Zealand, drivers must acclimate to the left side of the road and the right side of the campervan.

Navigate New Zealand’s Unique Roads

You will find many one-lane bridges and roundabouts throughout New Zealand, common occurrences that demand cautious driving and adherence to local traffic rules. Embrace the diverse terrain of mountainous country roads by driving to the conditions, exercising care around turns, and stopping at lookout points to appreciate breathtaking views. When driving on gravel roads, maintain a safe distance to avoid any gravel hitting your vehicle, potentially causing damage.


Campervan Life

Maintenance and Troubleshooting

Staying informed of maintenance tips and common campervan hacks is essential for a smooth journey.

Keep your campervan in top shape with these basic tips:

  • Regularly check the battery and keep it fully charged to avoid a dead battery on the road.
  • Inspect all electrical connections and wiring for signs of wear, damage, or corrosion.
  • Regularly check the tires for signs of wear and damage and ensure proper inflation.
  • Check fluid levels, including oil, coolant, and brake fluid, and top up as needed.
  • Keep a spare wheel, pump, and tire sealant in the campervan.

If your campervan has broken down, here are some common issues and fixes:

  • If the campervan won't start, check the battery connections and fuses.
  • Check the coolant level and look for leaks if the campervan is overheating.
  • If the campervan makes strange noises, check the engine oil level and look for signs of wear or damage.
  • If the campervan has a flat tire, use the spare wheel and tire sealant to get back on the road.
  • If the campervan has electrical issues, check the fuses and wiring connections.


Settling In

A dull, monotonous space can get drab quickly, especially if you spend weeks in it for a cross-country road trip.

Personalise your campervan with vibrant cushions, posters, and plants. Infuse it with your unique touch by incorporating comforts from home, transforming it into a space that truly feels like yours throughout your journey. Bring along familiar items that evoke the cosiness of home, like blankets and warm lighting, ensuring a snug haven during chilly nights and offering a welcoming retreat after a day of sightseeing.

Cooking on the Road

Most campervans come with built-in cookers, a fridge, a microwave, basic utensils, and seasoning. You'll have to stock up on ingredients from various supermarkets nationwide. Prepare simple one-pot meals like chilli, pasta, or stir-fry on the stove for easy and delicious dinners. Alternatively, if you want the full camping experience, load up on firewood and make some s’mores or grill up some burgers over the fire for a fun nighttime experience.


Travelling New Zealand

Campsite Selection and Navigation

Look for campsites with essential facilities such as toilets, showers, and rubbish bins. Check the availability of campsites before your trip, as some may be closed or booked during peak seasons, and you may need to make a booking before arriving.

Use apps like Campermate and AllTrails to plan your route to find campsites and nearby amenities.

Connecting with Locals and Fellow Travelers

Put on a friendly attitude when interacting with the local community. If you are travelling in a self-contained campervan, OK2Stay connects travellers with local hosts who provide parking and often share their knowledge and experience. This service allows you to explore and stay in unique local vineyards, olive groves, lavender farms, orchards, and more.

Off-the-Beaten-Path Adventures

Ask locals for their favourite hidden gems and lesser-known attractions. They may have insider knowledge of quieter places and unique experiences. Exploring dirt roads can lead you to hidden gems and lesser-visited areas. You can visit small towns or villages with less crowded attractions and more authentic than popular tourist sites.


Set Off on Your Unique Adventure Today!

With stunning landscapes, friendly locals, and unparalleled opportunities for outdoor activities, New Zealand is the perfect destination for campervan enthusiasts. Turn the insights from our campervan guide into reality by kickstarting your journey through New Zealand.

Browse New Zealand Motorhomes' selection of campervans and choose the perfect travel companion to experience the thrill of the open road today!

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