On the Road

About to set off on your New Zealand driving adventure? Follow these tips on driving in New Zealand.

  1. Be alert. There are more vehicles on the road in summer – more vehicles means a higher risk of crashes. 

  2. Take your time. Make sure that you and your vehicle are safe before starting your journey.

  3. Plan ahead. Plan your travel to avoid the worst peak traffic periods when many highways become congested.

  4. Let others pass. If you’re driving a campervan or motorhome and you have traffic backed up behind you, pull over as soon as you can safely do so to let other vehicles pass.

  5. Watch for fatigue. Plan to get enough rest beforehand so that you drive fresh. You should plan in advance where you’ll take breaks on your trip.


Find more information on New Zealand road rules and NZ road signs in the New Zealand Road Code.

Winter Tips

  • In winter (June to August) be prepared for snow and carry tyre chains that you know how to fit and use.
  • Drive at a safe travelling distance as it takes longer to stop on slippery roads.
  • Avoid sudden braking or turning that could cause you to skid.
  • Always check the weather forecast and road conditions before you leave.


Safety Tips

  • In case of emergency, contact Police, Fire or Ambulance by dialling 111.
  • Remember, it’s easy to underestimate New Zealand driving times. Take plenty of breaks and give yourself additional travel time to rest and stretch your legs. Check out our suggested itineraries for journey inspiration.
  • Keep your eye on the weather conditions before each journey so you can drive to the conditions. Allow for extra New Zealand driving times where needed.
  • Be sure to also familiarise yourself with driving electric vehicles in New Zealand.