While you may have the generosity bug itching, tipping is not practiced a lot in NZ and so you don’t need to slash lots of your budget thanking bar and waiting staff. If you tip generously, your spending can climb by up to 10% more on service costs, depending on how flamboyant your giving is.
Cutting down on this allows you to have more to spend on the actual trip, saving you precious coins that will add value to your experience. A hearty thank you and/or great rating online should do for your budget trip and won’t lead to any distaste from disgruntled staff.
Hire a Campervan
Travel around in a campervan, and you have the freedom to move as fast or as slow as you want. Spend more time in places that you love, move on faster if it just doesn’t tickly your fancy. In a campervan, you cut costs and really get to enjoy flexibility as well. With a great road system, you don’t have to worry about getting around conveniently.
Get a City Pass
You never realize how much you can save on your tour with a city pass, until you actually get one. City passes are designed to give you all access pass to whatever city’s sites you want to see, usually packaged into a time-bound experience. You may also get to qualify for free public transport, depending on the municipality and offers available with the pass. So, you save on the price of going to see the sites, as well as the price of getting around! Very cost effective.
Few people realize the cost savings that arise from planning well in advance, and locking down your venue and travel arrangements early. Book plane tickets months out to the trip for lower fares, especially if you plan to travel in high season. Also, booking accommodation early allows you to take advantage of early bird discounts available. Don’t be caught napping and be forced to pay more for last minute bookings.
Travel in Low Season
While this may seem like a logical statement to many, it is quite hard to apply to the majority. High season rates will always outstrip low season rates, sometimes over ten times as much. The price of everything falls, from ticket prices, accommodation, and even food. You get the opportunity to enjoy more value from a similar amount of money.
Go to a local restaurant for your meals. You will be surprised at how much you will save from this simple trick. Eating local is not just about cutting costs, it is also about authentic experiences. International hotels tend to serve a lot of highly priced international food selections, while local restaurants cater to local demand. Also, you have a much higher chance of having real impact on locals by paying them directly for goods and services. By eating in their hotel, you grow the local economy much faster.
Travel off the Beaten Path
Tourist traps are laden with over hyped, over priced tourism sights. Travelling off the beaten path allows you to see a more authentic (and beautiful) New Zealand, while avoiding over-priced tour experiences.