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New Zealand Self Drive Holidays

Select from 92 Relaxing Journeys self drive tours of New Zealand. Each self drive itinerary designed to ensure your holiday runs as smoothly as possible. Our self drive tours cater for all budgets and incorporate unique inclusions, local experiences and can be customised to suit your requirements.

Self Drives | Speciality Self Drives | FAQs | Reviews

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. How do Relaxing Journeys self drives tours work?

    The Relaxing Journeys team (based in Auckland) will organise your entire self drive holiday. We book your rental vehicle for the duration of your stay, we prebook and secure all your accommodation and your ferry crossing if necessary, as well as all the sightseeing activities included in your itinerary. We provide you with a full detailed itinerary and arrival instructions by email, and then on arrival in New Zealand you'll receive a comprehensive copy of your itinerary, map book and documentation pack. Our team is also on call, so if you run into trouble while travelling around our country - we are only a local call away!

  • 2. Why should we book our self drive tour to New Zealand with Relaxing Journeys?

    If you are looking to discover New Zealand independently, then our self drive touring holidays are for you. Our inclusive packages include your choice of vehicle and unique touring itineraries unmatched anywhere else. Our New Zealand based travel team have meticulously planned each itinerary and activity inclusion to produce balanced itineraries with manageable driving times, accommodation the best in its class and touring routes chosen for their scenic beauty. To find out what our previous clients think, read their testimonials here.

  • 3. What accommodation do you use?

    Our premium self drive tours include the option of top class boutique accommodation, international standard B&B's, 4+ star hotels & luxury lodges. (In some of the more remote locations, luxury accommodation is hard to come by so we've used our boutique properties.) Our mid range self drive tours incorporate 3+ star hotels and our budget self drive tours incorporate self catering motel accommodation. You choose the type of accommodation that suits you! The properties featured on all our self drive touring holidays have been carefully chosen for their superior level of comfort, exceptional amenities, friendly staff & service and their convenient location.

  • 4. What about our rental car? What can we expect?

    Relaxing Journeys only use rental vehicles from the 'top tier' rental companies (Thrifty, Europcar, Budget, Avis, Hertz), even on our budget self drive tours. Unlike most self drive specialists we have no hidden fees. We arrange the rental vehicle hire on your behalf and the cost of this hire includes unlimited kilometres, standard daily vehicle insurance (subject to an excess), airport and ferry pick up fees, additional driver fees, age surcharge and GST (Government Goods & Services Tax). All of our premium self drives have your choice of a Kruse Commentary System or GPS included in the price, and it's an optional extra on all our mid-range and budget self drive itineraries.

  • 5. Can we amend an exisiting itinerary to suit us?

    All of of our New Zealand self drive tours are flexible. We can add or remove days to the itinerary, we can can add pre or post accommodation if required and remove or incorporate addtional daily activities. We'll amend our itineraries to suit your travel plans, and provide you with 'local knowledge' to ensure your driving holiday is a relaxing one.

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  • 6. I'm not sure a self drive holiday is the best idea, I'm not confident about driving on the 'wrong' side of the road!

    Self drive holidays are one if the most relaxing ways of enjoying New Zealand's landscape. Many of our roads are scenic and traffic is low when compared to international standards. Based on feedback from our past clients we can reassure you that if you are a confident driver in your home country, then your self drive holiday should be stress-free. Have a read of our New Zealand driving guide to make yourself familiar with our road rules. You might also like to consider our independent coach tours if you'd prefer not to drive but you'd still like some independence.

  • 7. What is the difference between a budget, mid range and premium self drive tour?

    The main difference between each category is the accommodation. Accommodation also makes up the greatest proportion of the total cost of your tour. All categories use the same rental vehicles. Our premium self drives have the choice of a Kruse Commentary System or GPS included in the package and the itineraries are generally more varied & inclusive. Budget and mid range self drives tend to have fewer inclusions, but that doesn't mean you can't book them as you go around or prebook them yourself.

  • 8. Are there any other costs I need to budget for on my self drive tour?

    Our self drive tours include all government taxes, accommodation, car rental and sightseeing activities that are clearly identified in your itinerary. Items that are not included in the price include, fuel, parking & meals (except those specified in your itinerary).

  • 9. How do we pay for our self drive tour?

    We welcome bookings from all over the world. Your tour deposit is always paid by credit card and the balance is then paid 45 days out from the start of the tour either by credit card or bank transfer. To read more regarding how you book your self drive holiday click here.

  • 10. Do we get any more information than that provided on your website?

    Yes. After we receive your final balance you'll receive your full itinerary detailing tour times, pick up and arrival information etc. We will send this to you by email around 35-40 days out from your tour, then on your arrival in New Zealand you'll receive another copy of your itinerary along with your travel vouchers & travel pack.

  • 11. When is the best time to travel to New Zealand?

    We have a comprehensive weather section that explains the best times to visit New Zealand.

  • 12. What sort of driving licence do I need to drive in New Zealand?

    You can legally drive in New Zealand for up to 12 months if you have either a current driver's licence from your home country or an International Driving Permit (IDP). Recent law changes mean all drivers, including visitors from other countries, must carry their licence or permit at all times when driving. You will only be able to drive the same types of vehicles you are licensed to drive in your home country. The common legal age to rent a car in New Zealand is 21 years. Make sure your driver's licence is current. If your licence is not in English, you should bring an English translation with you, or obtain an IDP.

  • 13. Do I need a visa to visit New Zealand?

    All visitors to New Zealand must carry a passport that is valid for at least three months beyond the date you intend to leave the country. Currently travellers from more than 50 countries do not require a Visitor's Visa for stays less than three months. Read more here.

  • 14. Do you handle travel insurance?

    We do not sell travel insurance, however we do have information on a few select providers if you are looking for a recommendation. We recommend purchasing your travel insurance locally at the same time you book your flight. This will make dealing with your claim, should this be necessary that much easier when you return home.

Over 750 Relaxing Journeys Self Drive Tour Reviews

Planning a self drive holiday to New Zealand can be daunting, but we have doing this for a long time and our experience and dedicated support ensures you're in safe hands. Read the feedback from some of our past self drive clients - their comments and insights can help you decide on the self drive tour itinerary best suited to you. We've listed the most recent reviews below. Click to view all our self drive reviews.

  • ReviewPremium Self Drive 25 Day Grand Explorer 25 Day Grand Explorer

    Loved NZ and the tour. Everything was organised and ready for us. We only had to enjoy ourselves without the hassle. It was a great opportunity to see both islands. We had some weather issues but that was out of anyone's control. Only had one travel and stay that really was wasted time because we travelled a great distance but couldn't really see the place because of the time of arrival and because we had to leave the area to travel a great distance the next day. The accommodation was fantastic the B&B's were beautiful and of a high quality. We would recommend this tour. Thanks for all your help.

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    - 01/04/2017
  • ReviewBudget Self Drive 23 Day Scenic New Zealand 23 Day Scenic New Zealand

    We probably should have had extra days at a few places. Overall it was a trip of a lifetime. We learned so much about the ecology, birds, and history of New Zealand. Several motels gave us upgrades which was great. I didn't realize every room has a kitchen. That was a pleasant surprise. I would suggest giving the option to skip Kaikoura and maybe stay at Hanmer Springs.

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    - 19/03/2017
  • ReviewPremium Self Drive 10 Day Pure South Island 10 Day Pure South Island

    I loved the tour, especially the West side. I would love to spend less time on the East side and more on the West. I loved hiking on the West. Thank you.

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    - 14/03/2017
  • ReviewMid Range Self Drive 12 Day Northern Tourer 12 Day Northern Tourer

    Very enjoyable trip, helped by good weather for most of the time. Everything went smoothly as per the itinerary. Only concern was motel at Paihia with room being in separate building next door to the motel although room itself was good. Slight security concern.

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    - 14/03/2017
  • ReviewBudget Self Drive 13 Day Brief Encounter 13 Day Brief Encounter

    Great tour!!! All the accommodations, attractions, car rental, transfers, etc. came off just as promised. In general, all the accommodations were very nice. No reserved parking at the Ibis in Wellington was an issue. Not having free internet in this day and age is also a disappointment. The itinerary was very detailed and we tried to experience as many sites along the way as possible. We loved Queenstown. An attraction we did there, which was not mentioned, that we think at the least should be mentioned, if not set up in advance with a voucher, was the Walter Peak Farm Tour. We took the cruise over, which was beautiful, and then experienced the sheep shearing and sheep herding demonstration. We loved it!! On top of that, the BBQ was great and well worth the extra cost based on how expensive food typically is in NZ. Toni did a great job for us, especially with how the issues of the earthquake and forest fires affected our tour.

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    - 14/03/2017
All New Zealand Self Drive Tour Reviews