The cost of our family trip to New Zealand Family Travel

I’m not sure I can add up the travel expenses for New Zealand at all. Can I just say that the cost of our trip to New Zealand is a lot ?!

There are so many components to this epic family trip. Of course, I love to travel, so this trip is invaluable, but no money grows on trees, so this is a lot to be admitted in black and white.

Our New Zealand Vacation Costs – The Essential And The Essential!

Our family vacation in New Zealand

We are a family of four, including a 2 year old and a 4 year old. We will spend 22 days in New Zealand. We are flying from the UK and have created our own three week itinerary in New Zealand including the North and South Island. We travel and stay in a mobile home for the duration of the trip, except for the first and last night we stay in a hotel.

I am trying to give New Zealand a budget

I recognize that many other travel bloggers were looking for partnerships for accommodation, rental of vans, etc. (i.e. gifted stays and experiences in return for reporting), but like our last trips, we organized and paid for the lot ourselves.

This gives us more flexibility where we stay and what we do. It also relieves the creation of content. Yes, I have no doubt that I will write about it (I mean, this is my second post and we haven’t even been there!), But I want to be present when we are there. I don’t want to have the stress of taking the perfect picture, especially since I don’t share photos of my children’s faces – it is hard work taking the perfect picture for my own family album (i.e. with the faces in it) and then one for that Blog (ie without their faces).

This is probably our last big family vacation for a while as my 4 year old goes to school in September. This is another reason why I want to enjoy every moment. Anyway, I digress. Let’s talk about money.

I have broken down the costs and then explained below how and when we paid for different parts. It may be too much information, but I like to read these kinds of things because they feel real when you know what I mean.

Flights to New Zealand

The flights cost us a total £ 3,077, This consists of GBP 2,877 for the fare and another GBP 200 for the Skycouch.

The Skycouch makes economy seats more comfortable. It transforms a row of seats into a couch that can be used as a temporary bed or as a play area. We can only enjoy it on the Shanghai to Auckland route (both ways), but we think the minimum cost is absolutely worth it when we travel with the kids.

Our flights go from London via Shanghai to Auckland (North Island). Our return flights go from Christchurch (South Island) to Auckland to London, again via Shanghai. We booked directly with Air New Zealand and one route (each route) is operated with Virgin Atlantic.

I would say we could definitely have gotten the flights cheaper and in fact they were listed at a cheaper price but when we tried to buy them the website continued to display an error message. We went back and forth with them over the phone, but they wouldn’t keep the lower fee.

The shorter stopover flights were the cheapest, but the thought of getting the kids from one plane to another worried me. It’s bad enough getting them to put their shoes on to leave the house, much less from plane to plane when they’re tired. We took a 5 hour break – enough time to walk around the airport and have a meal.

I guess we could have saved some money (a few hundred) if we had flown with another airline, but I had my heart set on Air New Zealand. If you fly so long and travel with young children, I think it’s worth spending a bit more (if you can, of course) to feel safe and happy.

We wanted to move up to the next class on every part of the trip, but it was too expensive to justify.

Hotel stays

The hotel stays cost us a total £ 267.93, That’s £ 161 for the first night and £ 106.93 for the last night.

For our first night we stay in a two bed apartment in downtown Auckland. We land in the morning but didn’t want to jump straight into the van. I don’t think jet lag and driving are a great combination, and let’s face it, it is very likely that we won’t get much sleep on the flight with two mini-explorers to chat!

Again, we could have spent less, but I can’t stand ugly, rough rooms, and I didn’t want us all to be cramped in one room when it’s likely we’re jet lagged and irritable.

For the last night, we chose the closest, most beautiful hotel to the airport, since it made the most sense with our early morning flight. It is until our flight time changes to the evening. Our booking is non-refundable. We have left the hotel as it is. I will connect the hotels as soon as we are there.

RV Rental

The motorhome rental cost us £ 2,800We travel around the islands in a mobile home for a period of three weeks. We also stay there for the duration of the trip.

Recommended reading: Luxury motorhome rental in New Zealand – Read this before booking

You can choose a Freedom Camp where you can rock for free in approved locations. They are usually empty parking spaces, to which neither electricity nor water have to be connected. Some fill up very early and since we have a busy schedule, we often arrive late when most of the places are likely to have disappeared.

Although we use some of them – ones that we can join or that have an emergency plan, we didn’t want to play with the kids. Arriving late somewhere, with tired kids and staying nowhere doesn’t seem like fun.

The alternative is that you pay for a pitch at a campsite or at someone’s home. The latter vary in terms of the facilities available. We booked one night through Campable, where you can stay in someone else’s country for next to nothing, and most of it with family-friendly campsites. We also received a free parking space for one night as part of our motorhome rental package.

We spent £ 7.50 for one night via with Campable and £ 396.98 about campsites.

Use the coupon code CAMPWELCOME to get a 5% discount at Campable.

We also have to take fuel into account, but I have no idea how much that will really be.

Other transportation

To get from the North Island to the South Island, we sit on the ferry (with our motorhome). We booked this in advance as we have a tight schedule. It cost us £ 208.

Use the Instant10 code to get a 10% discount on Bluebridge Ferries.

We spend some time in Abel Tasman. Vehicles are not allowed and as much as the hikes look dreamy, they would be too much with small legs and our time frame. Therefore we booked a water taxi for the return trip. This way we can experience some of the beauties of this place. The water taxi cost us £ 75 and that’s when the kids are free.

The cost of activities in New Zealand

We spent £ 526 on pre-booked activities. As usual, we have booked everything we want to do because we treat each trip as if it were our last or at least our last one that we could never return because let’s face it, it is an absolute luxury able to travel to the other side of the world.

The only exception is the helicopter flight in Franz Josef, because this causes such high costs (approx. 500 GBP). We will decide when we are there, whether we want to top up our credit card!

We pre-booked activities and spent them as follows:

  • £ 85 on the Hobbiton tour
  • £ 80 for a family-friendly mud bath and a sulfur spa experience
  • £ 131 at a family dinner at Tamaki Mori Village
  • £ 102 on a family-friendly firefly tour
  • £ 73 on a two-hour Milford Sound cruise
  • £ 55 on a penguin protection tour

We have also provided £ 28 for the Rotorua luge.

to eat and drink

We plan to prepare most of the meals in our RV. The kids love a grill! Nevertheless, I have no doubt that we are sometimes too tired / lazy / hungry and end up eating out.

I’ve heard that eating and drinking are pretty expensive whether you eat or not. So I’m not sure how much we’re going to spend, but will update as soon as we get back.

Nice New Zealand

Other costs

Usually you do not need a visa to enter New Zealand from the UK New Zealand ETA, It cost us £ 92 (£ 23 each).

We spent £ 68 on an Amazon Kids Fire for our 2 year old. We have an I-Pad that the 4 year old will use. This effort is also used up on other trips.

We have also just taken out new travel insurance, but since we have annual family insurance, the cost of this (£ 62) will again be borne by other trips.

The total cost of our trip to New Zealand

So the scary part … the total. £ 7,478.41! Most of what I’ve ever spent on a trip!

That number doesn’t include food, drink, and fuel, and I think we’ll choose something else when we’re out there. Our busy schedule is packed and we’re not real souvenir buyers, so hopefully it won’t be much more.

For a family of four traveling to the other side of the world and having fun for three weeks, this price doesn’t seem to apply also Bad. I do not know. What do you think?!

How we paid for it

We booked everything ourselves and for the most part directly from the providers. We booked the flights first and booked the costs on our 0% credit card. I always like to block flights when you know it’s going to happen. We booked in September, five months in advance.

I then started browsing places to stay and activities, and found that many were booked for our dates. This panicked me and I spent the next week finalizing our itinerary, booking campsites and activities. All of this was also spent on our 0% credit card.

Since then we have released the credit card with our daily work income. Jay can earn commissions in his role, so “extra” money has been used to reduce the account balance. It doesn’t have as much as in the past, so it was not easy, but we like to think that the trip is worth it.

We also swapped the Tesco / Ocado / Waitrose stores (the latter were a rare treat!) For Aldi and Lidl stores. We have eaten less and generally made this trip our number one priority.

So there you have it, the nice costs of our vacation in New Zealand. I know that talking about money is not very British, but I hope you found it interesting. I’d like to hear how much you spend on vacation or how you budget for it. I find it fascinating and wish they had taught something like that in school!

Other holiday cost breakdowns

The real cost of our family trip to Canada

How much our family trip to Valencia cost

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