New Zealand Travel Information
If you hold an American Passport and staying under 3 months you will not need a Visa to enter the country. If you are staying over 3 months you will need to apply for a Visa.
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.
Comprehensive advice for travelers is available on the New Zealand Customs Service website.
Emergency Phone numbers:
In an emergency (Fire, Police, Ambulance, Search & Rescue) dial 111 from any phone.
New Zealand's unit of currency is the New Zealand dollar (NZ$). Coins have values of 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents, $1 and $2; notes have values of $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.
Banks are open from 9.30am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday.
Automated Teller Machines (ATM) are widely available at banks, along main shopping streets and in malls.
International credit cards and ATM cards will work as long as they have a four-digit PIN encoded. Check with your bank before leaving home.
Tipping and Service Charges
Tipping in New Zealand is not obligatory - even in restaurants and bars. However, tipping for good service or kindness is at the discretion of the visitor. Hotels and restaurants in New Zealand do not add service charges to their bills.
Most shops and businesses are open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, as a minimum. Many stores also open Saturdays and some open on Sundays. In resorts you will find most stores open in the evenings. Banks are closed at weekends.
Electricity is supplied throughout New Zealand at 230/240 volts, 50 hertz. Most hotels and motels provide 110 volt ac sockets (rated at 20 watts) for electric razors only.
For all other equipment, an adapter/converter is necessary, unless the item has a multi-voltage option. Please note that power outlets only accept flat 3 or 2-pin plugs, depending on whether an earth connection is fitted.
No vaccinations are required to enter New Zealand.
The north of New Zealand is subtropical and the south temperate. The warmest months are December, January and February, and the coldest June, July and August. In summer, the average maximum temperature ranges between 20-30ºC and in winter between 10-15ºC.
Public Holidays 2009
New Years Day – Thursday 01st January
Australia Day – Tuesday 26th January
Good Friday - Friday 02nd April
Easter Saturday – Saturday 03rd April
Easter Sunday - Sunday 04th April
Easter Monday - Monday 05th April
ANZAC Day – Monday 26th April
Queens Birthday - Monday 14th June
Christmas Day – Monday 27th December
Boxing Day – Tuesday 28th December
Most public call-phones take cards purchased from bookstalls and newsagents, with a minimum value of NZ$2. Some public call-phones also accept credit cards, but very few accept coins.
Check with your phone company before leaving home about international mobile roam facilities available in New Zealand.
You will need a RJ45 type plug to be able to connect your laptop into a computer socket in New Zealand, and an adaptor with a flat two or three-point power plug to connect to the power supply.
New Zealand is one of the first places in the world to see the new day, 12 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time). In summer New Zealand uses ‘daylight saving’, with clocks put forward one hour to GMT+13. Daylight saving begins on the first Sunday in October and ends on the third Sunday of the following March, when clocks are put back to GMT+12.
A tax of NZ$22-NZ$25 has to be paid at the airport when you leave New Zealand. Please note that this tax is not included in your ticket price.