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traveling inexpensively with a family in NZ and Australia

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific traveling inexpensively with a family in NZ and Australia

1. Posted by amigo (Budding Member 9 posts) 10y

amigo has indicated that this thread is about New Zealand

Is it even possible? Hear the prices are similar to North America. We are a family of 4 traveling for 3 weeks in December. Where can we stay, travel and eat that aren't too expensive? Tips? Specific recommendations are welcome and appreciated.
Thanks

2. Posted by Kathi20 (Respected Member 270 posts) 10y

The cheapest places to stay are always gonna be hostels/backpackers, but I'm not sure if that's what u want.

They also have kitchens where u can prepare ur own meal (at least at breakfast/lunch time) and sometimes offer dinners at night(BBQ) or even have a restaruant/Cafe close by, so that u can eat out as well.

In NZ u find a lot of those 'eat as much as u can' type things, or buffet places. They are cheap and u get a good feed, but u have to try out/decide urself if that's what u want (thinking of Valentines, Pizza Hut etc.)

Pls let me know, if there's anything else I can help u with

Kathi

P.S.: it's a hard question, as I don't know ur family and what u r used to. U always travel differently if u r by urself/with ur partner only, than if u r on the road with ur famiyl...

3. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4809 posts) 10y

Quoting Kathi20

The cheapest places to stay are always gonna be hostels/backpackers, but I'm not sure if that's what u want.

Many hostels (especially YHA ones) are very child and family-friendly, often having family-rooms (a double bed and a bunk bed), and would be a very good way to keep accommodation costs down.

Australia and New Zealand are very cheap compared to Europe; you can nearly cut the prices of everything in half (excepting luxury electronics and the like). Given the weak US Dollar, it's not that big a benefit, and of course usually on vacation you live much more expensive than you'd do otherwise (doing tours e.a.), but I'd still consider travelling inexpensively down there not all that hard. (That said, a really big cost in Australia is of course transport; that's much better in New Zealand, purely by virtue of the distances being much more reasonable.) :)

Btw, Kathi20, could you please try to write "you" and "are" rather than "u" and "r"? Given that this is a very international message board, it makes things much more understandable for everyone.

4. Posted by OzRocco (Budding Member 45 posts) 10y

Speaking from an Australian perspective – for a three week holiday with a family of four, the hostels will be a great experience and pretty $$ competitive but on price alone, I’d suggest you also check out onsite caravans and holiday house rental. Typically, holiday houses are normally rented for week or weekend blocks (not overnights) so if you were happy to be in one place for a week or more then move on and so on they might be a good alternative. Or you could mix & match a bit of all three (hostel, holiday house, cabin/caravan) to get the best of all worlds.

Roughly – hostels will cost you AU$25 per bed give or take $10 each person – so for accommodation alone you’re looking at roughly $700 a week in a hostel costs.

In December in Australia some holiday houses will rent for about this per week, in peak time (pre Christmas through to New Years and beyond) – double the price. On site caravans (or cabins) in caravan parks around Australia can be very reasonable and usually well situated on the beach, with price heavily dependent on the area you are in – but typically you’ll pay between $70 - $120 night (between $500 - $800 a week) for a cabin or van that sleeps a family (off peak).

Another alternative is to check out some of the vacation house swap schemes. http://www.m.uk.homelinkint.org/index.jsp
http://www.homeexchange.com/new.php

Car rental will be another major expense – but if you are going to spend any time outside the bigger cities, public transport is not good so you’ll avoid a lot of waiting around if you have your own wheels and it’ll make life a lot easier – but that depends on what you are used to.

Another accomodation alternative is renting a caravan or an RV – which I think will be in the $700 - $2000 a week range and on top of that you will need to pay to park it / hookup most of the time (some free camping areas exist - but they are nomally off the beaten track).

I’d suggest you brainstorm a list of things you want to see / do while in Oz and maybe work around that.

Here's a few suggestions of places to See in Oz.
In three weeks - you won't get to anywhere near all of these things - especially if you spend some time in NZ as well.

Victoria - Great Ocean Road, Phillip Island, MCG with a big crowd (80000+) at the cricket or AFL ...

South Oz - Adelaide Hills, The Barossa wine regions, South Coast, Kangaroo Island, Yorkes Peninsula, West Coast (Port Lincoln, Elliston, Streaky Bay),

West Oz - Kalgoorlie, Esperance, Pemberton, Albany, Augusta, Calgardup, Yallingup, Perth, Rottnest Island, Lancelin, Jurien, Cervantes, Kalbarri

Northern Territory - Darwin, Kakadu Nat Park, Red Centre (Uluru, Olgas),

Queensland - Weipa, Cape Tribulation Nat Park, Daintree Rainforest, Great Barrier Reef, Hinchinbrook Island, the Shute Harbour Islands, Fraser Island, Noosa, Gold Coast, Mt Isa, Kingaroy,

New South Wales - Sydney – climb the Harbour Bridge, tour the Opera House, Bondi Beach, North Coast (Tweed Coast, Byron Bay, Ballina … ), Blue Mountains, South Coast.

Not a lot of specifics in there, but hope it helps.
Feel free to msg me - we've done a fair bit of travelling in Oz with the family of 5 (on the cheap).
ROsco.