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Thread: Driving In New Zealand.

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Driving In New Zealand.

    Although we have not been in NZ long and are away again at the moment we have met a lot of very interesting people who have given us tips etc and I thought I'd share some with you.

    Driving in New Zealand

    When we first came over we had heard many reports on how bad the driving was and we have seen an element of this but not as bad as back home.That well known species known as "White Van Man" in the UK does not appear to exist in NZ. This is replaced with the "Boy Racer" or Hoon, young men driving around in illegaly modified overpowered cars. Fortunately because of the lesser population they are far less a commoditie than "White Van Man" though still a big problem in NZ.There seems to be a distinct lack of courtesy and consideration with driving in NZ.
    New Zealand has one of the highest rates of car ownership in the world. Most of these cars are second hand Japanese which are reasonably cheap. European cars are more expensive mainly due to importing costs and expensive spares.
    When buying a second hand car it is best to get an independent mechanic to check it out for you. Some garages do offer this but an independent check is usually more thorough. An excellent and sometimes funny guide is http://www.dogandlemon.com
    Petrol is reasonably cheap but is rising. If you use diesel fuel then you will have to pay road user charges of approx $26 per 1000km.
    In NZ the UK MOT is replaced with the Warrant of Fitness which is every 12 months for a new car and every 6 months for an older car. This costs between $25 to $50 depending on the vehicle.
    You have to place the sticker in the top right hand side of your windscreen.
    You will also have to have a Vehicle Licence Certificate which is around $210 for 12 months. This is displayed in the bottom left of your windscreen.

    Your UK driving licence is acceptable in NZ for 12 months.Before that time expires you will have to get a NZ licence. You will need to pass a theory test consisting of multiple choice questions where you will have to get 32 out of 35 questions right.

    The Land Transport Safety Authority publish the New Zealand Road Code
    Book where all the questions are answered.
    If you do not have a driving licence there are 3 stages to obtaining a full licence.
    Stage 1 Learner Licence: You must be at least 15 years old(Yes I do mean 15) Pass an eyetest and the multi choice rd test. You must also provide a Passport or Birth certificate.
    All drivers on a learners licence must display an L plate and be accompanied by a fully qualified driver at all times. This driver must have held their licence for more tha 2 years.

    Stage 2 : Restricted Licence: After holding a learner licence for 6 months,you will have to pass a practical test to hold a restricted licence.This will allow you to drive a car yourself under restricted conditions. The main condition is you can only drive a car alone between 5 am and 10pm.Outside of these hours you must be accompanied by an experienced driver who has held a full licence for more than 2 years.

    Stage 3: Full Licence: When you have held a restricted licence for more tha 18 months you can then take the full practical test to gain your full licence.

    Always carry your Driving Licence with you when Driving as you can be fined for not having it with you. If you have a UK card licence you must have the paper part available too as this shows any endorsements.

    Turn Right Rule.
    Traffic turning left must give way to traffic turning right into the same rd.This has caught me out several times and I am now getting used to it but now I am temporarily in the UK this does not apply.Another difference between UK and NZ cars is the indicator and windscreen wiper indicators are reversed. Seat belts are compulsory and an instant fine of $150 is given to anyone not wearing one.Adults are also responsible for ensuring anyone under 15 years wears a belt.
    Third party insurance is NOT compulsory in NZ which means there are many uninsured drivers around so fully comp insurance is reccommended.
    Advice for new drivers in NZ
    http://www.landtransport.govt.nz/factsheets/56.html
    For the road code
    http://www.ltsa.govt.nz/roadcode/index.html

    I may have missed some things out but you can find all the info on these websites
    Hope this helps

    Dave and Caroline
    Last edited by Dave in NZ; 9th June 2007 at 10:27 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Herefordshire now Cambridge NZ
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    Default

    Great help, thank you for taking the time to post

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Pirongia, New Zealand
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    Default

    [QUOTE=Caroline and Dave;134999]
    Your UK driving licence is acceptable in NZ for 12 months.

    This might be a stupid question but what address do you put on your uk driving licence when living in NZ??

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    California/Calabasas Hills
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    Default

    This is another great post!

    Thank you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Default

    Good post,

    A few minor corrections / omissions

    If you use diesel fuel then you will have to pay road user charges of approx $26 per 1000km.
    The road user charges include a transaction fee and a sliding scale of charges for the number of Kms you pre-pay for.

    More details can be found here:-http://www.landtransport.govt.nz/factsheets/38.html


    the Warrant of Fitness which is every 12 months for a new car and every 6 months for an older car
    It is 12 months for cars that were first registered anywhere less than 6 years ago, so older cars are those that are more than 6 years old.

    You will need to pass a theory test consisting of multiple choice questions where you will have to get 30 out of 33 questions right
    I believe it is actually 32 questions correct out of 35 question.

    Ian

  6. #6
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    Feb 2005
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    Eastern Auckland (from UK '05)
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    Default

    [quote=M&J;135006]
    Quote Originally Posted by Caroline and Dave View Post
    Your UK driving licence is acceptable in NZ for 12 months.

    This might be a stupid question but what address do you put on your uk driving licence when living in NZ??
    You dont, I asked them when I moved, you just leave it as it was, and if you ever go back to the UK change it to your new address then, you cant have an overseas address on the UK licence.

  7. #7
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    Jul 2006
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    SFO -> WLG
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    Default

    I'm getting quite fed up with this anti-"boyracer" mentality I see quite commonly. New Zealand has a rich motorsports history and if people can't figure out why young kids are enthralled by automotive sports, self-modifications, and cars, then perhaps they should just stick to minding their own business instead?

    Want to become another US with a law for every single damn thing?

    No - I do not think it's cool for kids to take off their exhaust and blast 130 dB exhaust notes at every oppurtunity. Yes, I do think it's cool that there is a hell of alot more freedom in NZ, motorsports wise, compared to other heavily regulated places.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Portsmouth
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    Default Driving Test NZ

    I have never read the Driving Test book or driven in NZ, but I took the test online and using common sense and my UK experience I got 7 answers wrong...so with a little reading and experience I think it will not be too bad !!! Possibly as easy as the California Driving Test I have also passed in the same manner.

    So if you have experience of driving in the UK and have 12 months on the road in NZ, you should not have any worries with the test...theory only required I believe.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    California/Calabasas Hills
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    Raybco: could you give me the website for the driving test in NZ?
    Thanks

    anna

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    4,455

    Default online driving test

    There is some useful info from the forum regarding online tests here

    A good place to start is the theory test as it has every question, it also has the links to where to find the answers.

    If you want a test that is a little more fun then would recommend this online test

    Note: That it only asks 33 questions when the real test is 35.

    Ian

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