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Predicted surge in first-time campervanners – Quirky Campers



Quirky Campers New Zealand, a unique campervan hire service offering handmade campers from around the country has seen an enormous increase in people seeking campervanning tips and advice.

The global pandemic is shaping the way New Zealanders live, work and holiday – not just because of travel restrictions but because of the groundswell of support for local businesses.

“Many of our recent customers who have hired vans have told us that this is their way of contributing to the tourism industry and getting out there to support small businesses on their travels,” says Leanne Edwards, co-owner of Quirky Campers NZ.

An increase is domestic travel is inevitable as we head into summer, but it appears campervanning is proving an increasingly popular choice as the method to do it.

“Our Campervanning Tips New Zealand group on Facebook has exploded over recent weeks,” says Leanne. “We asked members about their plans. Nearly 40 per cent said they planned to getaway at weekends while 20 per cent are planning a long trip around our beautiful backyard. And 35 per cent of those we asked are first timers! Given the high proportion of newbies we thought we’d share some tips!”

Campervanning Tips for First Timers:

  1. Choose a van to suit your needs. It sounds obvious but it’s easy to get swept up in the look of a camper! Before you book, think carefully about how you’ll be using it and what’s important to you. Do you mind assembling the bed each night in exchange for more living space during the day? Do you want to be able to stand up or cook inside? Will you need a fixed toilet and shower cubicle or will facilities at a campsite be roomier and cleaned for you! Can your van sustain itself power-wise while you’re freedom camping?
  2. Download an app. The easiest way these days to find places to park up (and fill up with fuel or dump your waste water!) is to use one of the many camping apps. Campermate and Rankers NZ seem to be the most popular and it’s worth reading the latest reviews from contributors to get a sense of what to expect… and if space is limited, what time of day you might need to arrive to secure a spot.
  3. Be a responsible camper. Surely this behaviour is in our DNA but a reminder never hurts… and it’s to leave no trace. Yes, there are bins at campsites and freedom camping spots but if everyone disposes of their rubbish in them, they fill up and overflow very quickly. Keep your own rubbish with you until you return home.
  4. Drive carefully and considerately. It’s not the time to opt for a manual drive vehicle when you’re most familiar with an automatic. You need to feel comfortable and confident with the size of your campervan so that you’re not putting yourself or others in danger when manoeuvring. Our roads can be twisty, hilly and narrow, which will slow you down even more so remember to take your time and drive to the conditions. And don’t let too many cars trail behind you! Pull over somewhere safely and let them pass.
  5. Pick an area and stay awhile. While we’re advocating a campervan trip, it doesn’t mean you need to clock up hundreds – or thousands! – of kilometres. Why not pick a region to explore and stay relatively local. It’s a great way to really see what an area has to offer. Before booking your van, do some research on local events and recommendations.

Leanne thinks that customised campers are climbing in popularity as they are such a comfortable, unique way to explore more of the country’s iconic spots without looking like a tourist!

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