If you are visiting the large cities in New Zealand, like Auckland, Christchurch or Wellington, you don’t really need a car, as public transport in and between these cities is very good and not too expensive. Using public transport in and between cities works out much cheaper than renting a car. But if you want to see the most remote and beautiful parts of New Zealand, you will definitely need a car.
There is a multitude of vehicle rental companies spread across New Zealand that rent out a variety of different vehicles to suit your need. You can rent a small or large car, a campervan, people carrier, station wagon or four-wheel-drive. There are vehicles for every budget, too. Most companies offer new cars and cars that are up to ten years old. Older cars are cheaper to rent and a good option if you are on a budget. Make sure the car you choose is not too old though – you dont want a car from the eighties! for your road trip of a lifetime.
Car Rental at Airports and in Cities
Most car hire companies are located at the airports and in the city centres. All the big international companies, such as Hertz, Apex, and Avis, have branches in New Zealand. Additionally, there are many local vehicle rental companies. Car hire companies at airports usually operate a free shuttle service for customers that will pick you up from the airport and take you to your hire car. Once you drop your car back off at the end of your road trip, they will take you back to the airport. If you haven’t booked your car in advance and they don’t have any vehicles available at their airport location, they will often be able to get you a car at their city location, if they have one.
Car Rental in South Island
If you are flying to Christchurch, you will find a number of car rental companies at the airport, some of which will take you to their off-airport location. There are also car rental companies in Greymouth, Dunedin, Blenheim, Queenstown, Picton, Nelson, and Invercargill.
Booking via the Internet
You can conveniently book a rental car via the internet. All you need for booking online is a full drivers license and a credit or debit card. Most companies will ask you to enter your credit or debit card details when booking online, but they won’t usually charge you to make a reservation unless it is stated that they charge a booking fee, cancellation fee or partial rental payment up-front. Don’t forget to take your driver’s license with you, as you will have to present it when picking up the car. If your driving license is not in English, you will need an international driving permit or a certified translation of your driving license.