What’s going on everybody my name is Alexander Ayling and welcome back to my channel. In this video I’m going to be sharing with you the essential information that you need to know before you visit New Zealand this travel guide is going to be jam-packed with facts and tips and all the info that you really should know before you visit this beautiful country so don’t go anywhere also if you’re new here please hit that subscribe button so you don’t miss out on any upcoming content if you enjoy the video give it a thumbs up and drop your own tips down there in the comment section I really love facilitating conversation down there that’s what this is all about it’s not a one-way chat if you add your voice down there in the comment section and answer each other’s questions as well I love seeing this community sharing tips with each other and making sure that we all have the best time when we visit this beautiful country so without further Ado let’s get into the video [Music] New Zealand lies in the South Pacific Ocean about 1600 kilometers or 990 miles from Australia and roughly 1 000 kilometers 600 miles south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia Fiji and Tonga New Zealand is made up of three main islands the north the South and Stewart Island below the South Island as well as 600 other smaller Islands New Zealand’s capital city is located at the southern tip of the North Island while its most populous city Auckland is located in the northern section of the North Island because New Zealand is located in the southern hemisphere the further south you go the colder the climate gets the further north Hugo the warmer it gets with that information in mind it makes sense that 77 of New Zealand’s population live on the North Island even though the north island is not actually called the mainland it’s the smaller of the islands the south island is much larger than the North Island is while the north island is much more populated than the South Island the north island is known as teika amawi in the Maori language the local indigenous culture here in New Zealand while the south island is known as tewaka amawi Maui’s canoe or te punamo the south island is often referred to as the mainland here in New Zealand because it’s 32 percent bigger than the North Island with a total land area approximately 104 000 square miles or 270 000 square kilometers it’s roughly the size of Japan or the state of California and it’s slightly bigger than Great Britain speaking of Great Britain New Zealand was once a colony of Great Britain but before that the Maori Islanders arrived here probably around the year ad 1200 they arrived in ocean-going canoes known as wakkas and they most likely came from the nearby islands of Tahiti the population of New Zealand is just over 5 million people while the country has over 40 million sheep so yes pretty much everywhere you go in New Zealand outside of the national parks you’re going to see a lot of sheep you’re also going to see a lot of cattle that’s because this country is predominantly Agricultural and Rural even though it doesn’t really feel like it when you’re traveling around New Zealand it is a predominantly urban country with over 73 percent of the population living in urban areas and over one quarter of them living in the city of Auckland New zealanders also enjoy one of the highest life expectancies in the world 82.3 years for females and 78.3 years for males and the time zone is New Zealand time which is GMT plus 12.
Okay so we’ve gotten to lay of the land but let’s talk about the climate New Zealand has a fascinating diverse climate stretching from subtropical almost tropical feeling up in the far north of the North Island to downright frigid right down there at the bottom of the South Island it’s got snow-capped mountains there’s skiing and snowboarding but there’s also beautiful beaches with warm warm water snorkeling swimming surfing you name it be country most of the country lies very close to the coast close to the coast close to the coast being close to the coast means mild Winters but mild also is a mild understatement we just spent our first winter here and it was the wettest winter on record it wasn’t particularly cold but it was very wet and that explains why New Zealand is such a green country because it receives a lot of rainfall New Zealand doesn’t really have any deserts although there is a desert-like area in the central plateau of the North Island near the main volcanoes what about weather and wind to come well if you’re planning a visit to New Zealand I highly recommend you visit in New Zealand’s summer months which are from December until March that’s when you have the highest chance of having great weather there’s nothing quite like a New Zealand summer it’s just blissfully beautiful down here and what’s nice about it is that you could probably swim it with your winter vacation your Christmas holidays you can come down here during that period of time get away from the cold weather in the Northern Hemisphere and enjoy some kiwi summer autumn is from March until May but you can get some great weather right up until the end of March beginning of April Winter is June July August but sometimes it feels like September is still kind of winter and even October at least this year but spring technically is September October November and then you’re right back at summer December January February and March if you’re planning on coming and going snowboarding in the South Island in Queenstown or in Wanaka or in Christchurch area then you’re probably going to want to visit during the winter time which is June July and August that’s when you have the most snow and the best conditions for any of those snow Sports what about language what languages are spoken here in New Zealand well there are actually three recognized official languages in New Zealand you have English you have Maori and you have New Zealand sign language so planning your trip the high season for tourism is that December through February time that’s the height of Summer it’s when the weather is the best but you also have to deal with the most crowds and certain areas of New Zealand can become very very crowded especially now that the borders are back open and tourism is starting to ramp back up after it is worth noting though that during the summer months accommodation prices do rise I would recommend you visit in the shoulder season so how much does it cost to visit New Zealand well first and foremost New Zealand is located right down at the bottom of the Southern Hemisphere it’s in the middle of the Pacific Ocean so first and foremost airfare is fairly expensive chances are you’ll probably be flying with New Zealand’s National Carrier Air New Zealand which does a great job but they also have fairly high prices you can find flash sales so I would recommend going and getting on their mailing list because all of a sudden out of the blue you might get an email with way more affordable airfare which you can book in advance also using any of those flight aggregator sites like sky scanner might help get you a better rate than just booking straight through the airline another Pro tip is when you’re looking for your airfare browse in private mode why because airlines are tracking your interest they’re tracking when you’re looking to fly and where you’re looking to go and if you exit out of that browser window and you come back they’re going to bump those prices up because they know you’re interested so browse in private mode and then you can compare and contrast without worrying about the price going up New Zealand has its own currency the New Zealand dollar right now at the time of filming one US dollar is worth one New Zealand dollar and 63 cents news Zealand is not necessarily an affordable country to visit prices are more expensive prices for food prices for petrol all because New Zealand lies down at the bottom of the world and they have to ship a lot of these Commodities into the country and those shipping costs are then passed on to the consumer so if you’re on a tight budget do what you can to save money when you’re here hire a camper van and sleep in a van that way you have a rental car and you’re saving money on accommodation cook your own food go to grocery stores pack and save is a more affordable option than maybe some of the other grocery stores do the things that you can to save money while you’re here because New Zealand is not really a super budget friendly option it’s more of like a bucket list travel destination all major credit cards are accepted in New Zealand although many places will pass these surcharge usually about two percent onto the consumer so if you’re going to use a credit card they might make you pay two percent more what they use a lot instead is called an F postcard and it’s essentially a bank card that functions as a credit card it’s got you know like just a touch and pay function personally as a traveler I love using my travel credit cards which are linked to mileage accounts with Airlines so that I earn miles from my purchases which can then go towards buying airfare in the future so I personally still think it’s worth it to use a credit card even if it’s a two percent surcharge more because I know I’m getting my airline miles but a pro tip is to make sure that you know what your credit card pin is before you come and visit because a lot of places will make you use your PIN especially like getting gasoline getting petrol as they call it here you have to have a pin for your credit card in order to be able to use it so make sure you know what your PIN is and also if you’re traveling here from broad call your credit card company beforehand call your bank beforehand let them know that you’ll be traveling to New Zealand because if you don’t they might just think uh oh there’s a charge coming up from New Zealand and you live in North America or Europe this is probably fraudulent and then they’ll freeze your card and you could be in the middle of nowhere and not have great cell service so avoid any of those little issues by calling ahead letting your credit card letting your bank know that you’re going to be traveling to New Zealand before you travel to New Zealand and let’s just talk about bargaining a lot of places that you go whether it’s in Southeast Asia or in Latin America or in Africa you can haggle a little bit right New Zealand’s not really one of those places the price that is offered is usually the price that they’ll sell it for the only place where you might have a little bit of room for haggling is an OP shop or a thrift store so how do you get to New Zealand well you’re not going to swim that’s for sure you’re probably going to arrive via airplane and the main airport is located in Auckland there are a lot of different carriers that can bring you here depending on where you’re traveling from the main National carrier is Air New Zealand from Auckland you’ll be able to get flights to various other domestic airports most of those flights are going to be either operated on Air New Zealand or Jetstar a couple of other airlines that offer flights to New Zealand are United Emirates Air China Jetstar uh who else virgin virgin Atlantic l-a-n Qantas and Virgin Australia if you’re sailing here then you’ve probably already researched all of that you can arrive by boat here but there aren’t any International ferries or terminals cruise ships do come to New Zealand but I have never taken one so I can’t really advise you there the one thing I can say is that you’re probably going to be jet lagged when you arrive to New Zealand let’s talk about Visa requirements citizens of over 60 countries including the U.
S and all EU countries do not require a visa to travel New Zealand as long as that trip is less than three months visitors from the UK can stay up to six months without a Visa but they will need to prove that they have the right to live in the UK in both cases you must have a exit ticket from New Zealand and be able to provide that you have enough money for your trip to New Zealand eligible Travelers who are interested in short-term employment to supplement their income can apply for New Zealand’s working holiday schemes under this program citizens from over 44 different countries aged 18 to 35 can apply for a working holiday Visa those countries include the USA Canada the UK Brazil Mexico Germany the Netherlands Peru the list goes on and on so check that out and see if you are eligible for a working holiday Visa little privacy alert though back in 2018 New Zealand passed a law which can charge a fine of up to five thousand dollars New Zealand to anyone who refuses to hand over passwords for their mobile device or Accounts at the border so when you travel there is the odd case that you may be asked to hand over your device to a customs or Border Protection official and if you fail to do so New Zealand can find you I’ve never heard of this happening to anyone but it is something to be aware of so maybe it’s time to delete all of your risque photos in your photo album before you come just saying probably a good idea regardless all right let’s talk about clothing and what to pack New Zealand is a fairly laid-back country when it comes to the dress code most people walk around in the supermarket in their pajamas with no shoes on or they wear gum boots pretty much everywhere so it’s not like you’re gonna get looked down on for not dressing up the key though with New Zealand is comfort and compatibility because the climate is so versatile and change changes so often and the key to being prepared for that is layering it’s very normal here in New Zealand to get four seasons in a day so you do want to be prepared when you’re out and about that you have the right clothing for this inclement weather that is just so common here in New Zealand even if you’re visiting in the middle of summer once the sun goes down the temperature will drop I can tell you first summer here was out shorts and a t-shirt went to a nice little bar to watch the sunset by the lake and then once the sun went down wind picked up it was freezing and my teeth were chattering before I knew it so make sure you have a sweater or a jumper as it’s called here handy because once the sun goes down the temperature goes with it I’d also recommend bringing sturdy Footwear a pair of Trail runners or some light hiking boots as well as a pair of flip-flops or jandals as they’re called here would be a nice combination and then if you just have some casual shoes that you would wear maybe if you go out to a nice restaurant or if you’re walking around in the city that would do just fine make sure you bring a rain jacket one of those little stuffable ones would do just fine if it’s the summer time something a little sturdier if it’s in the winter swimwear and a quick dry towel I always have a quick dry towel and a pair of swim trunks or togs as they’re known here in New Zealand in my car because there are just rivers and lakes and beaches everywhere and you never know when you’re going to want to just pull over dive in for a quick swim having the option and the clothing to get wet and then dry back off is always a good call another thing to make sure you bring is insect repellent I say New Zealand is Paradise on earth except for one thing and that one thing is the sand fly the sand fly is a demonic creature created in the depths of hell so small nearly microscopic but when it lands it packs a punch like Mike Tyson it hurts it’s going to turn into a welt it’s gonna itch it is literally the worst thing about New Zealand but that’s pretty much it there are no bears there’s no mountain lions there’s no giant mammal predators and yeah there’s no snakes there’s no poisonous reptiles New Zealand is a ridiculously safe place in that sense with like animals and stuff except for the sand fly and there are also mosquitoes here too so especially in the summer so it’s worthwhile bringing insect repellent bring a lot of it layer it on you’ll be fine and then lastly your passport make sure you bring it because you will get carded if you want a drink New Zealand’s drinking age is 18. I find it nowadays in my mid-30s it’s a compliment to be carded um but they do that very often and if you don’t have your passport on you you will not be able to be served even if you have a foreign driver’s license it’s not legit to get a beer or a glass of wine or a cocktail so if you’re planning on drinking make sure you bring your passport and then lastly a good pair of sunglasses because the sun is strong down here which also means you should bring sunscreen a good strong sunscreen so protect your skin with sunscreen and protect your eyes with a good pair of polarized sunglasses how about charging your devices voltage let’s talk electricity friends electricity is supplied at 230 to 240 volts if you’re coming from the United States of America you’re going to need an adapter that looks like this because that is what the prong looks like down here in New Zealand it’s got one here two there at an angle so you can just plug in your us thing there and then plug that into the wall let’s talk about getting around New Zealand is not the best country in terms of public transport first and foremost buses and trains if you’re in any of New Zealand’s major cities then there are a lot of public transport options mostly buses the occasional commuter train as well but when you get outside of the main cities that’s when it becomes very apparent that you’re gonna need a rental car or a van or some other form of Transport most cities have some late night bus options for boozy Friday and Saturday nights but they’re infrequent so don’t rely on those major cities do have Uber or taxi services but once you get outside of those major cities don’t expect to be able to just open your phone and get an Uber at one o’clock in the morning it’s probably not going to happen Maine cities have plenty of taxis and those taxis are usually metered and reliable the smaller the town the fewer the taxis the higher the price is if you’re going to be driving in New Zealand one important thing to remember is that you need to drive on the left hand side of the road if you’re watching this video and you’re not from the UK then you’re probably used to driving on the right hand side of the road on the left hand side of the vehicle being a member of the UK Commonwealth means that we also have the UK side of driving which is the left hand side of the road on the right hand side of the vehicle so something to keep in mind stay left okay don’t drive on the right hand side of the road you get into a head-on collision if you are looking to rent a car all of the major International car rental companies like Avis and Hertz and budget they all do operate here in New Zealand but there are also plenty of local car rental agencies or van rental agencies that also offer good deals let’s talk cultural context cliches history and fun facts history of New Zealand stretches back at least 700 years ago when Polynesian settlers arrive from other islands in the Pacific and founded strong Maori culture here with links and connections to the land and the Sea the Maori culture is still very strong here in New Zealand and a lot of the place names are interior Maori or the Maori language chances are you’ll hear somebody say kyoda which means hello it also means see you later in Maori the first year Explorer to cite New Zealand was the Dutch Navigator Abel Tasman on the 13th of December 1642.
If you’re planning to visit New Zealand and you make it to the northern tip of the South Island visit the Abel Tasman National Park is one of the most beautiful corners of the country because of its remote location in the South Pacific New Zealand was one of the last land masses to be colonized by human beings in the world when it broke off of the main continent of gantuanaland New Zealand was geographically isolated for over 80 million years which allowed for some unique Evolutions to occur here with the animals and the plants that call New Zealand home only five percent of New Zealand’s population is human the rest are all animals there are no native species of snakes in New Zealand but there are a few native species of lizards geckos primarily the country’s national bird is the kiwi bird a flightless nocturnal bird which is why new zealanders are known as kiwis it has nothing to do with the fruit the kiwi fruit which also grows here and is absolutely delicious but the kiwi fruit is actually native to Asia a couple of fun quirky little facts here the film trilogy The Lord of the Rings brought over 200 million dollars into the New Zealand economy and the government of New Zealand has the only worldwide right to print and mint commemorative coins for the Lord of the Rings crown articles of Narnia were also shot in New Zealand as well as the new Amazon Series rings of power New Zealand is also the first place in the world to see the Sun every single day the city of Gisborne on the east coast of the north island is the first place in the world to greet the sunrise so if you’re a morning person head to Gisborne it’s absolutely beautiful over there great weather Great Surf and you’ll get to see the first Sunrise every single day let’s talk about food and drink the three most popular dishes in New Zealand are number one the Maori hangi so the hangi is essentially a pit oven it’s a slow cooking method where volcanic rocks are heated to very high temperatures and then a pit is dug it’s lined with different like palm fronds or plants and then the food is placed in the oven the hot rocks are played based on top of it and then it’s all buried and that will cook for six eight hours and then you open it all up everything’s cooked it’s delicious and it’s definitely a unique bucket list experience if you’ve never tried it before that is saved for special occasions here because it is a big undertaking it’s a long time to cook number two is the Kiwi Burger it’s a grass-fed beef burger with aged cheddar topped with fresh romaine lettuce tomato and then the defining ingredient which is a thinly sliced piece of beetroot and a fried egg McDonald’s known as Mac as here has released this kiwi Burger since 1991 and it’s become a fan favorite of new zealanders all over the country and then number three Hokey Pokey ice cream it’s the best I can’t believe it doesn’t exist outside of New Zealand it’s just a delicious flavor and my wife literally she’s like always asking me to pull over at a dairy so that she can have a scoop of Hokey Pokey ice cream so if you’re visiting make sure you try out some Hokey Pokey ice cream what about the water well New Zealand tap water is super clean it’s safe to drink and it’s accessible all over the country also many of the national parks especially in the South Island in fjordland you can just drink Straight From The Creeks New Zealand is also world famous for its wine grapes grow very well here in the diverse climates around New Zealand and it’s Pinot Noir as well as its Chardonnay and sauvignon blanc have become world famous craft beer has become a thing there are tons of craft breweries all over the country and their hazy pale ales or hazy India Pale ales have become extremely popular so if you like a craft craft beer make sure you check out the hazy IPA if a boozy beverage is not your thing of choice make sure you check out an LNP lemon and pairoa which is New Zealand’s own soft drink it’s very unique but it’s also really tasty I’m a fan one other classic kiwi snack that you have to try when you visit is a meat pie yes I know meat and Pie what if you’re from you know North America then you probably think of like apple pie and pies that are sweet berry pies well in New Zealand pies are Savory most of the time okay and meat pies are like the perfect little snack they’re available in petrol stations or in bakeries or cafes and they’re hearty and delicious in a mince meat pie or a mince and cheese pie is an absolute must gotta try it if if you’re vegan or vegetarian they also have some other options but if you’re not make sure you try a mince meat pie one other kiwi food that you have to try when you come visit is marmite okay this is one of those yeast spreads it’s high in vitamin B12 you don’t just put a spoon into this and eat it straight that would be like trying to eat an old dirty gym sock but when you spread it onto a piece of toast you put a poached egg or something on top of it some scrambled eggs on toast with a little scrape of Marmite that is really really good Marmite is New Zealand’s version of Vegemite which is Australia’s version of Marmite and these two are in a giant battle you tell me which one you like more Vegemite or Marmite let’s talk about social etiquette the do’s and the don’ts of visiting New Zealand do be mindful of Maori culture pay respect to the Maori Heritage and culture here in New Zealand and also be mindful of the history it’s much like the history of Native Americans in the United States number two Buy Local there are tons of great local New Zealand businesses who are offering quality products and really could use your support one of the best things you can do when you’re traveling is to support local industry support local creators and makers so do that when you travel around ask and search for local products and buy local whenever you can and then number three learn some tereo Maori some Maori language some Maori words are used on a daily basis here in New Zealand first off New Zealand is known as aotearoa in Maori kyoda means hello means Family Fare means house and Kai means food and you probably already know this one Moana means ocean so Seafood Kai Moana a little bit of effort goes a long way okay let’s talk about the don’ts number one don’t mistake New Zealand for Australia people come on these are two different countries there’s a thousand miles of ocean between them and yes maybe sometimes if you haven’t heard accents from New Zealand you might confuse an Australian accent with a New Zealand one or vice versa but they are not the same country and if you know what you’re listening for the accents sound very different but my dad who’s from New Zealand and has lived in the United States for the last 30 years is constantly mistaken for an Australian there is a friendly rivalry between Australia and New Zealand most of the time it’s friendly unless it is a rugby game then when the All Blacks New Zealand’s National Rugby team the best rugby team in the world goes up against the wallabies Australia’s national team that friendly rivalry becomes a real rivalry don’t under budget there are a lot of bucket list life activities here in New Zealand and you may want to save and Splurge for those what about where to visit here I’m just gonna leave you with a link to my 12 essential bucket list travel destinations for New Zealand I have another video on my channel where I share an in-depth guide for the 12 places I think should be at the top of your bucket list for New Zealand there’s a lot more than 12 though so start off by checking out that video remember if you’re not already subscribed to my channel hit subscribe because I’m going to be doing a follow-up to that video with 12 more places that should be on your New Zealand bucket list but in the meantime and in this video check out my other video after this one is done where I share with you my 12 essential New Zealand bucket list travel destinations alright friends well I hope that this video has helped you prepare giving you some interesting and useful information to help you get ready for your trip to New Zealand if you enjoyed this video please give it a thumbs up if you’re not subscribed yet let’s change that click the Subscribe button turn on notifications so you don’t miss out on any of my upcoming videos and if you have any tips of your own please share them down in the comment section okay catch you in the next video peace foreign
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