Three months in New Zealand
Three months in New Zealand. Finally!!! Our last few days in Bali have been about one thing: we’re going to New Zealand!! Our plan is to start in Auckland and travel three months throughout New Zealand in a campervan. On the day of our departure to New Zealand, we were so excited that we arrived at the airport 4 hours before the flight! But oddly it didn’t feel long, and when we walked to the gate our plane was already there.
Tip: If you are travelling to New Zealand with a one-way ticket, you must have an forwarding ticket. The pre-check-in online is not possible because the cabin crew checks the ticket and enters the information into their system.
For the first time we would fly with Air New Zealand. We had a night flight and were hoping that we could sleep a little bit, but unfortunately this was not the case. We simply were too excited!
After an over-night flight of almost eight hours, we landed in Auckland, collected our golf bags, and had to go through customs.
Tip: If you have any food or wood or animal products with you, you must indicate this on the entry form. Entry into New Zealand is tightly controlled and if you do not indicate this on your customs claim list, you will face very high penalties.
Going through customs
We even cleaned any dirt off our shoes beforehand because we had heard that this might also be checked. In addition, we went through all our belongings and thought about what might be important to the authorities and what we should claim.
The following of our items ended up on our “claim” list: Bamboo straws, two wooden sticks that we carry with us to protect our golf clubs in the golf bags, and the shaving brush of James. Additionally, golf clubs will also be checked for any soil remnants.
When we landed, we had to line up in another queue and show the customs officer our declared items. After all the assessment, we got stamps on our passports and could enter.
Incidentally, our shoes were not checked.
Tip: directly at the airport there is an i-site office where you can get maps of pretty much all regions of New Zealand. Here we also got the information regarding the transfer to the Aukland city center. We learned that the SuperShuttle is cheaper than the Skybus, and it went directly to our hotel instead of an assembly point. Cost: 17.50 p.p. While at the i-site office, also ask for the “Kia Ora” bag. It is a free welcome bag that we use for our purchases or when we go to an i-site office to put the new information brochures in.
Checking In for five days in Auckland
After going through customs and taking the shuttle, we finally arrived at our accommodation. Since we arrived at 8:00 in the morning, our room was not yet ready for occupancy and so we went on our first exploration tour of Auckland.
The city is so beautiful. We walked through the streets like zombies until we couldn’t really look straight ahead with all the tiredness, but we got a good first impression of the city. After that we went back to the hotel.
We were told that we had to wait until 2 p.m. (it was just 8 o’clock in the morning), so we decided to just lie down on the couch in the lounge and set the alarm clock at 2 p.m. and sleep until we could get into our room.
Over the next few days we had one goal: to see as much of Auckland as possible.
Tip: buy the AT HOP Card. It costs 10 dollars, but it is worth it. For example, a trip to Zone 3 with the AT HOP costs $4.90 vs. $7.50 in cash. If you make a few trips, you have the money from the pass back and will also save on your further trips. As an icing on the cake, it’s easier and faster with the card than getting your money out every time.
The start of our trip in New Zealand
Before we traveled to New Zealand, we had often wondered how long we should stay in one place. We love Slow Travel and want to enjoy everything. For Auckland we have to say that 1-2 days less would have been better for us. Auckland is relatively small, you can do a lot in one day. Take the time that is right for you. But remember that there is so much to see, so don’t be missing a few days in the end.