Planning a road trip holiday to New Zealand? There’s more to it than simply choosing your route, booking the hotels and organising your rental car pick up. With over 94,000 kilometres worth of roads here in the Land of the Long White Cloud, there is plenty of room to explore, yielding new sights and experiences around every corner.
With that in mind, a road trip won’t be as special unless you are prepared for it and have the right supplies. Here is our all-in-one packing checklist to ensure you are bringing along the right goodies.
Make certain you have Kiwi dollars in your pockets, split between all the travellers (in case one of you loses his or her wallet).
You never know when you will encounter a traffic stop or similar, so ensure you have a valid licence for each driver.
Being able to brush your teeth, rinse your mouth, reapply makeup or other similar rituals could replenish your energy in the middle of a particularly long drive.
Travel first aid kit
NZ’s AA recommends carrying a first aid kit with the following:
- Hand sanitizer
- Insect repellant
- Ointment for insect bites
- Bandages and sticky plasters
- Moist towelettes
- Tweezers for splinters
- Fingernail clippers
We would add ‘travel sickness pills’ to that list, just in case you encounter a twisty road.
Food and drink
Bottled water is absolutely necessary (more so than coffee!), though you’ll want to keep fruit and other healthy snacks nearby in a cooler bag.
Don’t laugh at this one – you never know when you’ll need to do a quick repair. If nothing else, the inner tube would make for a spare cup holder.
Don’t just rest your head on the window. Bring along your favourite pillow for added comfort.
Sheets or a blanket
A blanket is great if you feel a little chilly, but it could also be hung over a window to block sunlight.
Ear plugs/face mask
Not everyone can sleep with the distractions of travel. If this is you, ensure you come prepared. Noise-cancelling headphones would also work a treat.
Fat pants? Check. Fluffy socks? Check. If you want long drives to be super comfortable, it pays to dress for the occasion.
Not only can a bright day make your eyes sore, sunstrike in New Zealand could mean you can barely see at all – especially when the sun is at a low angle, says the NZ Transport Agency. Wear sunglasses if you have them, as this can help. If not, pull over for a moment and let your eyes adjust.
Don’t let your rental car become a mess! Bring a plastic bag to throw rubbish in.
Road trip survival technology
Not sure where you’re going? Ace Rental Cars offers inexpensive GPS hire to help you navigate on your Kiwi road trip holiday.
Car USB hub
You only have one cigarette lighter slot, but with a USB hub, you can charge multiple devices at once.
Though some people get car sick when looking at a screen in a moving vehicle, having a tablet loaded with books, movies and games could help entertain anyone who isn’t gazing at the scenery. This would be especially useful for children with low attention spans.
Finally, make sure you bring along a camera to take all your holiday snaps. Don’t just use your phone – its battery life will be useful should an emergency occur. With a modern DSLR or standard digital camera, you can get HD photos that would look superb in the family photo album. For a little extra bit of awesome, buy a GoPro camera and mount it to your dash. That way everyone at home can see your road trip too!