All you need to know about accommodation in New Zealand

Upon arrival

It's good to have some certainty, so book at least a few days accommodation in advance. 2 variants are of the easiest online bookings are: a searches among most commercial hostels, youth hostels, hotels etc., arranges private accommodation and can often offer higher quality for less money. I have used many times and it's a great alternative to commercial accommodation.

If you've never used, use this link to register and for your first accommodation worth at least €67 you will get credit €18, which you can later spend on other accommodation.

Long-term accommodation

Bydlení v domě
Bydlení v domě

The most common forms of housing, you will encounter are:

  • house rental
  • room rental
  • long-term accommodation in backpacker
  • living in car

House rental

Ideal if you know that you will stay longer in the area, typically at least a season. The houses are commonly rented for a few months in areas as a ski centers, such as Wanaka. If you decide to rent a house, it is good to know the advantages and disadvantages. One of the things that will surprise you is the processing of local homes and that most of houses will be cold in the winter. Even if you close all the windows, the wind may blow through the wall and you can figure out that through the floor you can see directly the ground. And when you encounter a relatively modern house with double glazed windows, you will find out that they are embedded into the aluminum frame to get you cold anyway. :-) Heating is usually solved by fireplace and electric heaters or heat pump, and it makes the electricity bill high.


  • You have your entire house and your privacy
  • It is your decision who can live with you


  • Some paperwork with reality estate, it gets easier when dealing directly with the owner 
  • Usually they require references (previous landlord, employer, etc.).
  • Usually you have to arrange energies (electricity, gas, internet)
  • You are responsible for the condition of the house, if the contract is written on your name, you are responsible for your roommates
  • In busy areas the houses are rented for the season very quickly and the offer is restricted

Useful tips:

  • - company which will arrange electricity, gas and internet connection with no contract, all for free (the connection, not the usage of course).
  • Don´t look for houses for rent only in the local real estate, check also sell, buy & borrow groups on FB

Room rental

A very common form of housing, which is associated with the foregoing. But it's not just about sharing a rented house, very often the home owners offer free room. Having a tenant is in New Zealand due to the cost of living relatively common.


  • No paperwork
  • The house is fully equipped
  • Low price, no worries about another rooms
  • Available for short-term rentals
  • You can leave immediately if needed


  • You are moving to people you don´t know, there is a danger of not liking each other
  • It is more difficult to make parties

Useful tips:

  • You can find free rooms in sell, buy & borrow facebook groups
  • You can find free room on notice boards in supermarkets

Long-term accommodation in backpacker

This form of accommodation is often chosen by individuals who have no one to pair with to rent a room. Some backpackers offer discounts for long stays, but not very high. You must have prerequisites for accommodation in backpacker, otherwise you won´t like it there. Sometimes the hostel accommodation is a part of the farm or orchard where you work.


  • Low price if you are in a dorm
  • You meet a lot of people
  • You can leave whenever you want
  • Parties all the time


  • No privacy
  • Lower comfort of living
  • Risk of theft
  • Parties all the time

Useful tips:

  • You can look for hostels on
  • In busy areas hostels can be very expensive and sold out during peak season

Living in a car

Almost everybody tries to live in a car for a while during the stay in New Zealand. But not everybody can handle long-term living in a car. The level of comfort can be pretty low. On the other hand you can sleep pretty much anywhere.


  • It is cheap, very often for free
  • You are free, you can go any time anywhere
  • After working week you are already packed for weekend
  • Can you imagine something more beautiful than wake up on the beach?


  • Low level of comfort, especially during bad weather
  • If you are not staying in camping ground, you have nowhere to cook, wash or do the laundry
  • Risk of theft

Useful tips:

  • Mobile apps WikiCamps and Campermate show you camping spots and other useful information
  • If you are not sure that you can stay overnight in certain area, try to check local council website or ask local DOC.

Do you have another experience? Or do you miss something on my list? Send me a message. :-)

Dlouhodobé cestovní pojištění nejen na Nový Zéland najdete na webu