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Oz experience / Kiwi experience

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Oz experience / Kiwi experience

1. Posted by chris_k (Budding Member 18 posts) 8y

hi there has anyone done the oz or kiwi experience if so what was it like

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 4808 posts) 8y

I did the shortest possible trip with the kiwi experience (Auckland to Bay of Islands + Cape Reinga and back) to see what they were like. My conclusion was basically: they're for people too lazy to read their Lonely Planet themselves and figure out stuff on their own. The premium you pay for this over regular intercity / newmans / greyhound / mccafferty's buses is rather high, especially since they then spend half of each bus journey pushing their sales pitch for expensive activities (on which they get a kickback).
Also, a lot of the people taking the kiwi experience are 18-year olds more interesting in getting drunk than in seeing the country. They're easy not to have too much to do with, but why pay for that? The kiwi experience is known in the backpacker circuit as "the partybus", "the fucktruck", "the big green slut machine" and other descriptions in that vein. Now, that's not entirely deserved (although also not entirely undeserved), and there's a lot of people who have the time of their lives travelling with it (or with the magic bus or stray, which (imo) offer near-identical packages, though they're trying to differentiate themselves in various ways), but personally I'd much more recommend doing everything yourself.

[ Edit: Edited on Oct 25, 2007, at 3:39 PM by Sander ]

3. Posted by danielle21 (Budding Member 64 posts) 8y

Hi Chris,

I travelled on Oz Experience Oct 06 Melbourne - Cairns, it was awesome great way to meet ppl of mixture of ages and nationalities. they cover places i hadn't really heard of as well as the mainstream stuff. Yes it does include alot of partying but only if you want to join in there is no pressure. I would really recommend them.

I am going to New Zealand next year and have booked Kiwi experience, it is good for me as i will be travelling alone.

Danielle

4. Posted by jaxstar84 (Respected Member 415 posts) 8y

ive heard from most ppl that its too expensive for what they offer... you can get the greyhound/mccaffertys for som uch cheaper. i havent done it so i cant really comment but i ahvent heard that many good things. yes you prolly do have a great time, but at a cost.

5. Posted by magykal1 (Travel Guru 2026 posts) 8y

Think Sander sums it up quite well. Lots of young backpackers enjoy kiwi and oz experience, very easy way to meet people and the partying will happen without you having to think about it. I did a short Stray trip in New Zealand, and it was fine, I think the emphasis is a little more 'outdoorsy' than the Kiwi one but the itineraries were very similar.

But, big but, you have to see everything with 20 other people, and it's almost as easy and definitely cheaper to do it by yourself, and if you find the drink-oriented crowd annoying it's tough luck once you've stumped up the money.

Edited to say that: contrary to Danielle's post, in New Zealand I couldn't see anything on the itineraries for these companies that you couldn't achieve yourself with a little planning and effort - question is whether you want to put in the planning and effort....

[ Edit: Edited on Nov 8, 2007, at 9:41 AM by magykal1 ]