Car Rental In NZ

Driving in New Zealand with your NZ Backpacker Rentals .com rental car

Visitors to our backpacker car rental report they find driving in NZ a remarkably stress-free experience. Traffic volumes are low, the roads are well maintained and backpacker car rental is inexpensive.

What side of the road do you drive your NZ Rental Car?

New Zealanders drive on the LEFT HAND SIDE of the road. For those used to driving on the right hand side, city driving can appear quite dangerous – especially at intersections, where cars seem to be coming from random directions.

However, most accidents occur on country roads, where the driver simply forgets which side they should be on. For this reason your car rental from NZ Backpacker Rentals .com will most likely have a left-pointing arrow stuck on the dashboard.

Driving Your NZ Rental Car in Cities

The speed limit in built up areas is 50kph (around 30mph), with a few areas designated 70kph. Because traffic is relatively light (except for rush hours in Auckland!), not many motorists in New Zealand have learned the advantages of making room for other vehicles where they are not legally obliged to do so.

Visitors to our car rental report they find lane changing in New Zealand can be more difficult than in other countries. You may also notice a slightly lower level of road courtesy than in other countries. Fortunately, this is not reflected in social situations, where kiwis are genuinely hospitable and welcoming of visitors.

Driving Your NZ Rental Car in the Country

The country's main highways pass mostly through farmland, where the speed limit is generally 100kph (about 60mph). When the road passes through a town, it reduces to 50kph. A plain white circular road sign with a black diagonal line across it indicates that the speed restriction is lifted, and that the 100kph limit applies.

Visitors to our NZ Backpacker Rentals find New Zealand roads are generally well signposted, with all highways given a one or two digit number. This number is shown on most maps, and on freestanding roadside shields. On the outskirts of most towns, or shortly after major intersections, large green signs display the distances to the next towns.

Car Rental and Traffic Law Enforcement in NZ

The NZ police enforce driving laws throughout the country, although city councils can issue parking notices in their patch. The police make extensive use of unmarked patrol cars, and speed cameras operate on open roads - usually from vans or cars that will be parked on the left hand side of the road with their boot or rear doors open. A flash as you approach means you've been sprung, the Police will send you the fine (which can be as much as $600) and NZ Backpacker Rentals will charge you a processing fee. Blood alcohol limits in New Zealand are set at 80mg/100ml, although having any alcohol in your blood after an accident may affect the insurance cover on your rental vehicle – so check first.

Rental Car Certification in NZ

Any car used on a New Zealand road needs a warrant of fitness and registration. Getting a warrant of fitness requires a six-monthly mechanical inspection, and the annual registration ensures every vehicle has third party injury insurance cover. Car rental vehicles in NZ are subject to a more stringent safety inspection, called a certificate of fitness.

Documentation for both of these requirements is affixed to the windscreen.

The Land Transport Safety Authority has more information on road safety in New Zealand at:

Check out our backpacker car rental vehicles available in NZ.

"NZ Backpacker Rentals .com for quality car rental in NZ."