Here we take a look at Camper van hire in New Zealand with an article by Luke and Jess, 2 British backpackers who decided to self drive through New Zealand by hiring a camper van. Here’s what they found out…..
Spaceships New Zealand Camper Van Review
After arriving in New Zealand we stayed in Auckland for a couple of days whilst we checked out the sights and also started looking for places where we could hire a camper van or RV for a few weeks. We found a couple of local places but the standard of the cars wasn’t that great and we didn’t want to break down somewhere along the way and ruin our trip!
After a tiring morning looking round at several places we saw a flyer in the hostel for Spaceships Rentals and we ended up booking online at the hostel almost straight away. It was quite surprising how cheap it can work out per day. I was really excited to hear we would also get a DVD player, fridge, lockable storage and cooker for a reasonable $36 NZD per day.
The next morning we walked from the train station in Penrose down to the Spaceships Auckland office to sort out all of the paperwork. We couldn’t wait to get on the road and start our adventure but first the guy from spaceship rentals showed us how to operate everything and gave us a little survival kit and information package.
First stop was the supermarket where we could buy a good stock of food as now we had somewhere to store it which is always a problem when moving from hostel to hostel. We also bought a large map of New Zealand too before hitting the road around 11am. It was a nice feeling of independence with 15 days of travel ahead of us and we could go wherever we wanted to! I had also printed off a map of the Stray backpacker bus route so that we could see which places are of interest and where we might find other backpackers heading to. To see the map click here.
First stop was Raglan, followed by Taupo and National Park before we reached Wellington, then it was onto the Interislander ferry to Picton. The south island was a lot quieter on the roads and we could cover fairly big distances as we made our way to Franz Joseph to do a glacier hike before getting to Queenstown a day earlier than we planned.
The camper van was pretty modern ans spacious and we really did have everything we needed in there. Driving was comfortable and easy apart from Luke’s navigational skills of course and when we got to our night stop the bed was really simple to make up. We hired a couple of DVDs from the video store and watched them on the van’s DVD player and made soup on the cooker. To be honest you would really think it was a camper van with the window shades closed and the bed made up it was surprisingly comfortable and cosy. You can also extend the bed out of the rear of the camper van and have a tent style covering over the back and give you more room inside.
Queenstown was a great place with lots of things to do for fun. We took the gondola up to the top of the mountain and had a great time on the luge before finishing the night off with a Fergburger. A must do on the backpacking route!
Finally with a few small stops on the way it was time to head up to Christchurch and drop off our camper van. It had been well worth it, a brilliant 2 weeks, as we had experienced New Zealand with a freedom and independence that you can’t really achieve when travelling by bus or train. We would definably recommend getting a Spaceship!!