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Old 08-10-2021, 04:35 PM   #1
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Fantasy RV Tour to New Zealand & Australia 2023 Anyone?

Hi there we have signed up for the New Zealand & Australia Fantasy RV tour for 2023. Has anyone else taken this tour in previous years? Would love to hear about it and what we should pack? What to do for cell and internet service? How does the money vs cr card work? What not to do? Recommendations for flying? Other tours available? GPS for the rv travel? Travel issues? Was it great? Can we keep in touch if you signed up too? Okay thanks in advance.
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Old 08-10-2021, 08:38 PM   #2
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It sounds good. I'm a kiwi so I can probably answer general questions about NZ. I left twenty years ago although I still have family there and keep a close watch on the news etc and listen to NZ talk radio while lying in bed before I get up most mornings but anything specific I'm probably a little out of date on.

Hopefully travel will have opened up by 2023. Right now I think there's a mandatory two week quarantine in a designated hotel which you can't leave when you arrive and several months waiting list for a spot so I couldn't even easily get in as a NZ citizen right now.

Credit cards generally work the same way as they do here. Visa and Mastercard are widely accepted. I had no problem with my US card in NZ in 2004 (last time I was there). I would still check with your bank or someone who really knows because I vaguely remember hearing about possible problems if your card doesn't have a PIN. NZ was heading towards almost being cashless when I left so I suspect it's closer now.

I had a look at the site. It looks great but I think there will be some long days driving. 100 miles or 163 km on NZ's mostly two lane roads is a lot more work than 100 miles on a US interstate. Day 19 from Waitomo to Orewa sounds like a long way especially since it goes through Auckland although I guess you can stay on the motorway (freeway) through Auckland.

As an aside, that day includes two places of significance to me. You pass Hobbinton which is in the town of Matamata where I was born and my elderly parents still live and then Orewa is where I last lived and owned a house until I moved to the US.

The roads are pretty good quality but away from the main cities they are generally two lanes with intermittent passing lanes. Of course you'll need to get used to driving on the left.

I don't really know about cellular access. I think it's pretty good although data limits are probably much more expensive than here. You can usually roam with your US phone but I know you need to check it out carefully first or it can be very expensive. An alternative is to buy a local SIM or even a cheap local phone when you get there.

I'm sure you've weighed up the options but an alternative of course is just to hire an RV and do your own thing on your own time. I think that's a popular option. I have some friends here who did that a few years ago.

I'm sure Australia will be good too. The physical countryside is definitely different and the culture is similar but a little different. It's kind of like the difference between US and Canada.
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Old 08-11-2021, 10:14 PM   #3
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WOW! What an incredible adventure that would be.

Seven or eight years ago we spent a day at Hobbiton. Had a blast and even some hard cider at the Green Dragon.
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Old 08-12-2021, 04:44 AM   #4
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My wife is also a kiwi. Get a credit card with no foreign transaction fees for spending. She has not needed a pin on hers, but just did put a pin on both of ours because of international travel to other countries. Not a bad idea to have. For any international travel get the TSA Global Traveler card. Eliminates to long lines, makes air travel much easier. We just used it to Iceland, works well. DW just puts a SIM card in her phone when she goes.

Above post was correct about NZ roads plan much longer drive times, not only 2 and sometimes one lane roads at bridges but much to see. Good luck getting in. Unless the current policy changes, you won’t.
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Old 08-12-2021, 09:46 AM   #5
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Thanks for all the posts and updates. Our trip is for 2023. Hoping it will be all okay by then. Great information and links. Lots to learn and lots to be excited about.
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Old 08-12-2021, 06:29 PM   #6
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Australia and New Zealand I would do that in a heartbeat.

Don't know if I could adapt to driving on the "wrong" side of the road. Couple of friends of mine went to England several years ago, kind of retracing their dads footsteps during the war, and had some interesting experiences about driving while they were there.
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Old 08-18-2021, 05:06 PM   #7
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I think renting a RV is the way to go. Do things on your own time; not someone elses.
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Old 01-28-2022, 10:51 AM   #8
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we are looking at this trip too
Mar 2022 trip seems too soon with covid
waiting for over a year seems like a long time

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Old 05-19-2022, 11:42 AM   #9
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We are on the wait list for the March 2023 trip. I have many of the same questions. Would like to use airline points to fly if possible but I noticed they say not to book airfare until they provide more information.
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Old 05-20-2022, 10:45 AM   #10
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Let us know if you get in from the wait list. We had some other friends get in from the wait list already. Good luck. PM me if you get in so we can just email about stuff for the adventure. We want to add something to the front or back of the trip like Figi Islands. Still looking for info.Thanks
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