With some of the most breathtaking scenery the world has to offer, a wide array of recreational activities to choose from, and plenty of dining and nightlife to enjoy, it’s no wonder New Zealand ranks high on travelers’ lists of places to visit. However, any big trip requires some careful consideration and thoughtful planning. To help ensure that your trip is as enjoyable and headache-free as possible, Russell Herbert Jack, Southland Yoga Founder and an avid traveler, has compiled a list of ten essential things to consider when visiting New Zealand in 2021.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to varying international travel restrictions based on the country you are departing from. Be sure that you are aware of what both your country and New Zealand expect of those who enter their borders from another country.
Pre-Departure COVID-19 Test
Unless you are coming from a short list of regions, you will need to receive a negative pre-departure COVID-19 test before entering New Zealand. This may also be necessary for you to re-enter your country.
All travelers to New Zealand are required by law to complete a 14-day quarantine or managed isolation, which will be confirmed by a Managed Isolation Allocation system voucher, before boarding their flight.
Your passport must meet all the requirements for you to travel to and from New Zealand successfully. It must be valid for at least three months beyond the day you plan to leave New Zealand or one month beyond your departure date if the issuer of your passport has consular representation in New Zealand.
Depending on where you’re traveling from, your money may be more or less valuable when converted to the New Zealand dollar. Make yourself aware of the exchange rate, as it may considerably alter your trip’s budget.
Another important factor when determining your budget is New Zealand’s tax on goods and services or GST. Most of, if not all, of your purchases, will come with a 15% tax. Consider this when planning your expenses, as it’s likely that this sales tax rate is higher than what you’re used to.
Time of Your Visit
Unless you’re also from the Southern Hemisphere, your seasons are the opposite of those in New Zealand. That means your wintertime is New Zealand’s summertime. Summer is the most desirable time to visit but the busiest time for tourism and winter offers fewer activities yet more significant savings.
Length of Your Visit
For most of the world, New Zealand isn’t the type of destination for a weekend trip. You’re going to want around two weeks at a minimum to take in all you can.
Build an Itinerary
To get the most out of your trip, it’s essential to build a detailed plan that organizes your flight information, accommodations, travel methods, planned destinations, and planned activities.
Learn About Your Destination
Context is all-important! Learn all you can about any country you plan on visiting in order to gain a greater sense of interest, wonder, and respect for every part of your trip. Remember: travel is sacred.
About Russell Jack
Russell Herbert Jack, Southland Yoga founder, lives in Invercargill, the southernmost city on New Zealand’s South Island. He specializes in Vinyasa Yoga, Qigong, and guided meditations. His other passions include animal rights protection, volunteerism, vegan lifestyle, nature, surfing, and traveling the world.