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1. Posted by infernoj12 (Budding Member 6 posts) 11y

I was just curious if anyone had any stories of run-ins with the local po po, or if there were any tips someone should know when dealing with them. Not that I'm a criminal but for the time I'm there chances are I'll get my 'chance to meet them'. What about traffic, booze, or other miscellaneous tickets you got there and how much they cost.

cheers,

Jordan

2. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 11y

Jordan,

I'm not sure what exactly you're trying to ask, but New Zealand has one of the highest death tolls from drunk driving in the world(drink driving, as they call it). My sister, who lived there for 4 years, tells me of stories where the police will set up road blocks on EVERY street coming out of Auckland city centre on a surprise night. The police are adamant about the problem, and with good reason. When you drive down the road anywhere, you'll see white crosses at the side of the road - sometimes clusters of them. That's where people have died in road accidents.

I really don't know if this is what you're referring to in your question, but if it is, please find some other way to get around while you're there.

Tway.

3. Posted by infernoj12 (Budding Member 6 posts) 11y

Sorry for the confusion. No, I was more talking about the singing at the top of your lungs with a brew in your hand with all your buddies walking home from a pub at 3 am type thing. I know drinking in public here is $120 ticket and sometimes the cops can give you a real hassle about it, such as going as far as a body search (clothes on ;) ).

4. Posted by Kelz_NZ (Inactive 22 posts) 11y

Yep, nz is big on no drinking in public and no open bottles of any kind of alcohol in a car! Big fines, NZ police are tough, you dont get away with much these days. A lot of controversy over our police spending more time harassing and giving out tickets for this and that than serving and protecting the community in regards to crime.

5. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 11y

Hi again Jordan,

Ah! I follow you now. Sorry about that. I thought it a bit odd to have a post about how to get away with driving intoxicated . Hope you thoroughly enjoy your vacation. New Zealand is beautiful, and the kiwis can drink just about anyone under the table. I'm sure you'll love every minute! ;)

Tway.

6. Posted by TravelMc (Respected Member 93 posts) 11y

Hi Jordan,

One thing to keep at the forefront of your mind is NZ police have a 'no tolerance' policy for most things. So I don't recommend stripping off and standing on a table belting out a barbra streisand hit!
If you get a ticket it will cost ya. I got a speeding ticket once for doing about 10k over the speed limit and it cost me $235 plus points. However I understand the States has harsher fines.

If you are driving about note this: They will ping you if you are over the limit full stop - there is no 10% excess now. If you get flashed by a camera you will get a fine (they used to only fine the fastet 15%) but you wont get points (which I don't think you can as a traveller anyway). They do random breath testing everywhere!

If they do nab you for public nuasance or whatever be polite and as helpful as you can and they will be respond accordingly. I'm sure there are a few knobs on the force but on the whole they appreciate it if you make their job easier so if you do have a brush with PC Plod don't give him/her a hard time! :)

I hope that is useful. Wherever you stay ask the locals you meet what its like there. They should let you know what its like and what you can get away with!

Cheers!

7. Posted by Mikey B (Respected Member 181 posts) 11y

On the subject of speeding fines. I know someone who, when arriving home from travelling, received speeding tickets from the NZ police. He'd been caught driving 20 or so KM over the speed limit. Anyway he ignored the tickets and after the third one they stopped sending them.

Now I would imagine they catch lots of visitors going over the limit and I would also imagine that lots of visitors don't bother paying the fines when they arrive home. Are there any potential repercussions if you don't pay? For example, if you go back there are you going to find you can't hire a car?

8. Posted by Mikey B (Respected Member 181 posts) 11y

.....also while I'm on the subject of speeding in NZ.

If the Police are so vigilant when it comes to fining people for speeding, then surely the entire driving population of NZ must be getting tickets constantly, as I don't think I ever saw ANY local driver driving within the limit.

Every time on the open road if I was driving the legal limit cars coming up behind would always overtake and disappear into the distance.

9. Posted by Kathi20 (Respected Member 270 posts) 11y

alright guys, I'm gonna tell you a few different stories now
(by the way I don't drink and have never been drunk in my life before):

my boyfriend's mates got pulled over at least 3 times by now and failed the test, were totally pissed and what happened? 3 times they got away with it, only got a (verbal)warning. So what do you guess, have they learned from it? Nothing, right. Still drinking and driving, hoping to get another 'warning' instead of a ticket.

One night they had about 7 passengers in the car and got pulled over. Again, only a warning.

I wish they had been the ones to get a ticket, but I guess it's not gonna make a big difference to them anyway.

A guy from work only has a restricted licence, got pulled over a few times, bec he was carrying passengers, driving after 10pm etc. and also only got a warning.

So I'm not surprised that there are so many accidents and that people just don't care.
It's the same with road works. 30kph means 70-100kph to them. Nobody cares. Everybody ignores it and gives a ... about it.

And then people are shocked at the same time, when they hear that 6 young guys got killed in a car crash.

By the way: if you are travelling and not paying your ticket, you can have problems when you wanna enter the country again. That's what the police told a 'friend' a year ago.
Don't ask me how it works, but that's what I've been told.

But what I actually wanna say:
there are idiots on the road everywhere (specially here in NZ, sorry but it is true) and there's not much you can do about it.
The cops are alright I guess, they sometimes block roads on a SAT nigt, yes, but that's fine with me. I don't have a problem with it and if you are polite and friendly, the police will treat you the same.
And I think if you are intoxicated, speeding etc. (=looking for trouble) they can probably be a bit firmer with those kind of guys anyway...

so just obey the rules/law and you will be fine ;)

Kathi

10. Posted by weddes (Budding Member 6 posts) 11y

They do their job.
Contrary to the previous post, there is a 9km tollerance on speeding - so you can get away with 59 in a 50km zone, and 109 on the motorways/highways. In the past, only the top 20%? of speeders got tickets from cameras, but now everyone does if they exceed the tollerance.
Speeding tickets are incremental - about $120 for 59, $230ish for between 60 and 70 and add another $100 for each 10km increment. If you get caught doing over 50km over the limit = instant license loss
Similarly, if you get caught over the alcohol limit you lose your license instantly (or are supposed to!).
Tickets are eventually passed to courts if they aren't paid, and you will end up with a warrant out for your arrest - which will show up if you try to come into NZ again.
As for drunk / disorderly behaviour - it depends what, where etc. Some times of year (New Years) the tollerance is a bit lower - you can be arrested in some areas just for having open drinks in public, you don't have to be drunk. On the whole be reasonable to the police and they will be reasonable back - it is like any section of society, you will have some who are doing the job to help people, and some who want the power trip. Legally, you only have to tell them your name, address, occupation and age, BUT it may be better to be reasonable, rather than being obstinate if you do have a situation.