New Zealand regions are linked by a network of domestic airlines, buses and trains. It’s easy to explore the country in your breaks from studying.
Walking is very popular in New Zealand. You’ll probably live close to your institution so it will be easy to walk to classes.
You can fly to the main centres and many smaller cities and tourist destinations. Distances are generally short - the flight from Auckland to Wellington only takes an hour. Some airlines offer discounts if you book online.
For full-time students with an ISIC card or Youth Card (under 25), it's worth finding out what STA Travel (phone 0508 782 872) can offer. If you’re calling from outside New Zealand, their phone number is +64 9 366 66 73.
The Interislander, Bluebridge and Lynx ferries link the North and South Islands, carrying passengers and vehicles between Wellington and Picton several times a day. Commuter ferries cross Auckland and Wellington harbours and scenic cruises are popular in many places.
In most cities, buses run at least every 30 minutes. Auckland and Wellington also have commuter rail services. 10-trip and monthly passes offer the cheapest fares. Secondary school students are eligible for a discount on bus travel to and from school. Large institutions operate shuttle buses between different campuses within the same city.
Commuter trains are increasingly popular, especially in Auckland and Wellington.
Bikes are a great way to get around New Zealand’s compact cities and towns. Cyclists are required by law to use lights and reflectors at night and to always wear a helmet. Ride near the left side of the road, not on the footpath, and look out for sign-posted cycle lanes in cities.
To ride a motorcycle, you must be at least 15 and have a motorcycle licence, or a car licence if the bike is under 50cc. Both the driver and the pillion passenger must wear helmets. You motorcycle must be registered and have a warrant of fitness.
Driving in New Zealand can be very enjoyable and a great way to explore. If you have a valid overseas driver licence or an international driving permit you can drive in New Zealand for up to a year after you arrive. After that you'll have to pass a theory test and probably a practical driving test to get a New Zealand driver licence. Your car must be registered and have a current warrant of fitness. It is also a good idea to have insurance for your car.
Rental cars are plentiful and can be a good way to see the countryside if you don’t have a car of your own. Be prepared to pay a large bond if you don't have a credit card.
Traffic in New Zealand drives on the left side of the road. When driving a car, you can be fined if you or your passengers are not wearing a seatbelt. Cycle helmets are compulsory for people riding bicycles and motorcycles. All vehicles must pass a regular mechanical inspection and display a current warrant of fitness. There are serious penalties for speeding and driving while drunk.