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New Zealand Travel Tips & Questions

What is a Hop On Hop Off bus?

In very simple terms a hop on hop off bus in New Zealand is a type of tour bus. However, while the set route aspect gives it something in common with what most think of when picturing a bus tour all other comparisons end there. Hop on hop off buses are aimed at the (usually) young adventurous crowd who want all the conveniences of a tour with all kinds of fun stuff and activities thrown in but with complete flexibility and freedom.

If you want to stay with the route from beginning to end you can but the whole point is that if you find somewhere you just can't tear yourself away from you can take a break from the tour and then return to it when it suits you.

The three companies offering this type of bus tour in New Zealand are Flying Kiwi, Kiwi Experience and Stray and they are all very different (Flying Kiwi very much so) both with regard to what they offer and how they work. The main differences are that Flying Kiwi's prices include camping accommodation and at least one meal every day. The other two will organise your accommodation for you (if you want) but you have to pay for it.

Typically speaking, each of your scheduled stops has options for free activities or a diverse choice of paid for add-ons. If you don't want to do anything at all you don't have to.

All of the companies offer a variety of passes, several different trip lengths and a choice of routes which cover North Island, South Island or both. Once you have purchased your pass it is valid for either 12 or 24 months.