Car Hire New Zealand Car Rental New Zealand Auckland Airport Car Rentals.

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Drive NZ | Terms & Conditions


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When you hire a vehicle from us like most other rental Companies in New Zealand there are basically 3 elements to the transaction. (There are NO hidden costs).
  • Daily Charge The charge for the vehicle per day that you will hire less the deposit you may have paid. The charge also includes GST (Goods and Service Tax at 15%); insurance, unlimited km's per hire, 24 hour support, locks (if applicable), NZ road maps, accommodation guides and tourist information brochures. The total charge for the period of rental is paid at the commencement of the hire, less the 20% deposit taken when you book. No refund or consideration will be given for any unused portion of the booked hire.
  • Bond You will be asked to provide a valid credit card for Drive NZ to Authorize the applicable bond or you will be asked to sign a separate security BOND in the form of a credit card imprint or a deposit. The bond is held by us BUT NOT BANKED. This is our guarantee that you will return our vehicle on time and in the condition that it was hired. The fuel tank at the same level as the start of the hire. The bond amount is based on the vehicle insurance excess and is detailed below in the paragraph applicable to the type of vehicle you hire.
  • CDW An optional collision damage waiver (CDW) charge is the way a hirer can reduce the insurance excess. This is charged daily and is at a rate applicable to the type of vehicle you hire as outlined below.



To secure your vehicle, a deposit of 20% of the total hire charge is required with the balance payable (i.e. full payment) prior to commencement of hire. We accept all major credit cards.


Cancellation Fee

Cancellation fees are as follows:
  • If cancelled more than 21 days prior to vehicle pick up - FREE
  • If cancelled between 7 - 21 days prior to vehicle pick up - Full refund less deposit (or $150 whichever is greater)
  • If cancelled within 7 days prior to vehicle pickup - 50% total rental fee (or $150 whichever is greater)
  • No show, failure to pickup or supply a valid credit card under the name of the hirer or failure to supply a Bond in the form of a signed credit card imprint or giving less than 72 hours notice of the intention to cancel in writing, 100% of the total rental fee.


Rental Duration

The rental period commences from the time of pickup. Minimum rental period on all vehicles is 3 days. Vehicles are available 24hrs 365 days. Charges are calculated on 24 hour basis.


One Way Hires

Minimum hire days apply. Repositioning fees may apply dependent on hire term:
  • Auckland to Christchurch $600
  • Christchurch to Auckland $100


Child and Baby Seats

Child seats are compulsory on New Zealand roads for children as follows. These may be hired from us. Please order at time of reservation stating age of child so correct size may be booked.

All child seats are subject to availability. It is the clients responsibility to check child seat fitting DriveNZ  accepts no responsibility what so ever for child seats that are incorrectly fitted.


Age of child

The law says you must:

Until their 7th birthday

Correctly secure your child in an approved child restraint

From their 7th to their 8th birthday

Correctly secure your child in an approved child restraint if one is available in the vehicle (and if not, in any child restraint or safety belt that is available)

From 8th birthday to 14 years old

Must use safety belts if available. If not available, they must travel in the back seat.

Over 14 years old

Must use safety belts where they are available.



We offer a shuttle transfer service from Auckland Airport and Christchurch Airport, 24hrs 365 days of the year.


Repairs / Breakdowns

All vehicles are fully maintained and serviced. Should it be necessary for you to effect minor repairs costing less than $100 then you may do so without authorisation. Please keep and present your receipt for a full refund.

Amounts in excess of $100 require authorisation. No responsibility will be accepted for any accommodation, meals or other expenses resulting from a breakdown or accident.

Any problems with the vehicle or equipment failure must be reported as soon as practicable to afford us the opportunity to rectify the problem during the term of hire. No liability will be accepted for any notifications received after the termination of the rental agreement In case of breakdown ph. 0800 474 777 for nationwide service.


Travel Between the North and South Islands

Travel with a vehicle between the North and South Islands of New Zealand requires a trip on the inter island ferry. Over the summer months of December to March the ferry's are full so it pays to book early to avoid any disappointment or delay especially if traveling with a vehicle.

See our Websites of interest page for the inter island ferry website.


Additional Equipment

Additional equipment may be hired at the following rates: -
  • Sleeping bags - NZ $25 each
  • Picnic Table - NZ $25 per hire
  • 2 Picnic Chairs - NZ $25 per hire
  • Booster Seat- NZ $30 per hire
  • Baby Seat - NZ $30 per hire
  • Chains - NZ $25 per hire

Additional equipment details 


Road Rules

In New Zealand, you drive on the left side of the road please see our Road Rules page.


Duration of Hire

The term of hire shall commence and cease at the time and dates specified in the schedule. (Note: Vehicle charges are on a 24-hour basis). First hour is free; Vehicles returned within one hour of the time of return will not be charged; after the first hour late a full day hire applies. The owner must authorise any rental extension beyond that specified in the rental agreement prior to the return of the vehicle. The owner reserves the right to charge a penalty fee of NZ$500 plus the daily rental rate for anyone in breach of this.


Persons who may Drive the Vehicle

The vehicle may be driven during the full period of the hire only by the persons named on, and who have signed the agreement for hire, and only if they hold a current full driver’s licence. (Note: only persons 18 years and over may be hirers and authorised drivers).


Payment by Hirer

  • The hirer shall pay the owner in full prior to hire (as payment for the hire of the vehicle for the agreed period) the sum specified in the Agreement. The hirer must have a credit card. The hirer agrees to pay any additional costs in connection with the hire including (but not limited to) parking and speed camera fines, puncture repair and relocation and cleaning fees as incurred in connection with the hirer's possession of the vehicle, including those which become apparent following termination of the hire. The hirer authorises the owner to debit his charge card for the same.
  • In addition to the payment specified in clause 'a' the hirer shall pay to the owner the sums specified in the Schedule for Insurance Cover as set out in this agreement.
  • The hirer shall pay for all petrol or diesel (but not oil) used in the vehicle during the period of the hire.
  • The hirer will be responsible for the entire cost of the hire should the voucher they present not be paid by the agent. The total payment will be charged to the client's credit card should payment from the agent not be received.
  • The following credit cards will be accepted: Visa & Mastercard for payment and security bond purposes.


Hirer's Obligations

The hirer shall ensure that all responsible care is taken in handling and parking the vehicle and that it is left securely locked when not in use. (Note: This clause requires all responsible care to be taken for the vehicle. Animals are not permitted in the vehicle at any time).



  • Subject to the exclusions set out below, the hirer and any driver authorised to drive the vehicle is indemnified up to a limit of NZ$2,000,000.00; this is in respect of any liability he or she might have for damage to any property (including injury to any animal) belonging to any other person and arising out of use of the vehicles.
  • Fully comprehensive insurance is included in the quoted rate. This insurance covers you for all damage to a third party vehicle (less the applicable excess) in the unlikely event of an accident. (Note: Options a, b and c do not cover window and tyre damage).
  • Accessories supplied with the vehicle such as, but not limited to GPS units, ski racks, sleeping bags and other camping equipment is subject to any applicable excess.


Click here for details of our insurance options.


Car Insurance


Standard insurance is included in the cost, additional options are as below:
  • Standard insurance excess NZ$2,000 - this insurance included in daily rental charge
  • to reduce excess to NZ$500 - additional NZ$15 per day
  • to reduce excess to nil - additional NZ$19 per day (includes tyre and windscreen waiver)


Please note the Zero Excess Insurance option is not available for a hire of 3 days or less.


  • Excludes water submersion or salt-water damage, damage or loss of lights, tyres (unless hirer has taken Additional Tyre/Windscreen Waiver), roof, underbody and vehicle interior, and any damage caused from the use of snow chains and roof rack systems.
  • Excludes cover for personal belongings, the cost to replace keys which have been lost or the cost of retrieval of keys which have been locked inside a vehicle. Excesses are charged for each accident or incident resulting in damage or claim. All excess options are void if the terms of the rental agreement are breached.
  • All Excess Reduction is void if the terms of the Rental Agreement are breached. If this occurs, the hirer will be responsible for the total cost of any damage. This will also include any damage caused by wilful conduct (e.g sitting or standing on the bonnet or roof of the vehicle) and driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • The vehicle is wilfully or recklessly damaged by the hirer or any other person named in the Agreement or driving the vehicle under the authorisation of the hirer, or is lost as the result of wilful or reckless behaviour of the hirer or any such person. (Note: Punctures, damage to tyres, rims, burning out a clutch and any damage arising from using the vehicle to propel any other vehicle are regarded as wilful or reckless damage).
  • None of the insurance options cover the incorrect use of fuel (fuel being diesel or petrol). The hirer will be responsible for any associated costs.
  • The hirer will be responsible for the cost to retrieve or recover a vehicle, which has become bogged, regardless of the insurance options taken.
  • If the vehicle is operated in any race, speed test, rally or contest; insurance is void.
  • The hirer is not a body corporate or department of State and the vehicle is driven by any person not named in this agreement.
  • The vehicle is driven by any person who at the time when he/she drives the vehicle is disqualified from holding or has never held a driver's license appropriate for that vehicle.
  • The vehicle is operated on any unsealed road or beach and any of the following roads: Ninety Mile Beach (Northland), Roads North of Colville Township, Ball Hutt Road (Mt Cook), Skippers Road (Queenstown).
  • The vehicle is operated outside of the hire or any agreed extension of that term.
  • It is agreed between the owner and the hirer that section 11 of the Insurance Law Reform Act 1977 shall apply with respect to the above exclusions as if this clause constitutes a contract of insurance.
  • The hirer acknowledges that he/she shall be liable in respect of the damage or loss referred to in the insurance cover specified in this clause to the amount of the excess shown on the agreement. This applies to damage or loss resulting from the theft or conversion or attempted theft or conversion of the vehicle.



  • A bond is required for all hires. DriveNZ will authorise the bond on your credit card or you will be asked to sign a separate security bond in the form of a credit card imprint. By providing this bond (signed credit card imprint) you acknowledge that there is sufficient funds on the credit card offered for the bond to cover the insurance excess. This bond is held by the owner and is NOT banked; it is our guarantee that the hirer will return the vehicle on time and in the condition that it was hired in.
  • The owner reserves the right to bank the bond excess for a period of up to 3 months after the termination of the hire agreement to cover the cost of un-notified parking or speeding infringements or damage to third parties or their property.
  • Where the third party causes damage, the hirer is liable for damages as specified in their rental agreement. As insurance is not compulsory in New Zealand there is no guarantee that these damages will be recovered, therefore the bond may be banked and not refunded.
  • Where the car has been returned during or outside office hours and the vehicle has undiscovered damage to the windscreen or body of the car not covered by insurance, the client will be charged and sent an email summarizing the cost of repairs.
  • A bond shall be taken for each accident. In the event of a replacement vehicle being dispatched, the bond/ insurance excess will be twice that of the original vehicle.
  • The bond will be taken to pay for any costs associated with returning the vehicle to the condition it was in at the commencement of hire regardless of whether it was the hirers fault or not.


Additional Hire Costs

  • A processing fee of NZ$30 (per fine) will be charged for any unpaid parking and speeding fines incurred during the rental period. This is regardless of whether knowledge of these is known.
  • A minimum $200 cleaning charge for any vehicle returned excessively dirty inside or out, in the sole opinion of the owner.


Owner's Obligations

  • The owner shall deliver the vehicle in a safe and roadworthy condition.
  • The owner shall be responsible for all ordinary and extraordinary costs of running the vehicle during the term of hire except that by the terms of this agreement those costs are payable by the hirer. (Note: the hirer shall as soon as practicable in any event within 24 hours notify the owner of any complaints, defects or failure of the vehicle, or claims against the owner or its agents. If the hirer fails to do so the hirer may be deemed to have waived the same and the company will not be liable for any claims resulting there from).
  • Any mechanical or towing expenses required for the vehicle must be authorised by the owner prior to the repairs or towing taking place. Failure to authorise these expenses may result in the hirer being held liable for the costs.
  • Any potential refund for a breakdown of the vehicle is limited to the daily rental rate of the vehicle for each whole day in which total use of the vehicle is lost. This limit is for all costs incurred by the hirer including, but not limited to any associated delays in the hirer’s schedule and, for the avoidance of doubt, includes, but is not limited to any substitute rental vehicles, accommodation costs and prepaid activities or cancelations.


Mechanical Repairs and Accidents

  • Any problems associated with the vehicle including equipment failure must be reported to the owner as soon as possible within 24 hours in order to give the owner the opportunity to rectify the problem during the rental period. We do not accept liability for any claims submitted after this period.
  • All vehicles are registered with the Automobile Association (AA) for 24hr roadside assistance. This service covers any mechanical faults with the vehicle. Please note that the AA does not cover the following and the associated costs will be the responsibility of the hirer;
    • The vehicle running out of fuel
    • Keys being locked inside the vehicle or lost
    • Flat batteries as a result of the lights or keys being left on
    • A breakdown as a result of damage caused in an accident
    • PHONE AA TOLL-FREE 0800 224 357 (0800 AA HELP) OR FROM MOBILE *222
  • The hirer shall ensure that no persons shall interfere with the distance recorder or speedometer, or except in an emergency any part of the engine, transmission, braking or suspension system of the vehicle.
  • All AA non-mechanical call-outs will incur a call-out charge of NZ$85.
  • The AA service operates 24hrs, however for mechanical repairs outside office hours (including weekends), some delays may occur. The owner will always endeavour to have the car repaired in the shortest time possible.
  • The availability of an Exchange Vehicle is not guaranteed; provision is subject to availability, client location, accident liability and remaining hire duration. Hirer charges may be incurred (see below)

    If an Exchange Vehicle is required as a result of an accident whether their fault or not, the hirer is responsible for making their own way to the nearest DNZ branch or pickup location

    DNZ may offer the hirer the option of paying an - Exchange Vehicle Relocation Fee to send a driver to deliver the Exchange Vehicle to the hirer's location. The hirer will pay for any costs relating to delivery of a change-over vehicle as a result of any single vehicle accident. This charge applies irrespective of any excess reduction taken.
  • The hirer is responsible for keys which have been locked in the car and for changing tyres.
  • No replacement vehicle will be provided without receipt of a completed insurance claim form where one is required.
  • In the event of an accident occurring and an Exchange Vehicle is not available, DNZ will not be liable for any resulting accommodation or living expenses that are in incurred.


Use of the Vehicle

The hirer shall not use or permit to use the vehicle to be used for the carriage of passengers for hire or reward, unless the vehicle is hired with the knowledge of the owner for use in a passenger service licensed under Part 1 of The Transport Services Licensing Act 1989.


The Hirer shall not

  • Sublet or hire the vehicle to any other person.
  • Permit the vehicle to be operated outside his or her authority.
  • Operate the vehicle on any beaches or unsealed roads.
  • Operate the vehicle, or permit it to be operated in any race, speed test, rally or contest.
  • Operate the vehicle or permit it to be operated in breach of the Transport Act 1962, the Traffic Regulations 1976 or any other Act, regulations or by laws relating to road traffic.
  • Operate the vehicle or permit it to be operated for the transport of more than the number of passengers or more than the weight of passengers or more than the weight of goods specified in the certificate of loading for the vehicle.
  • Drive or permit the vehicle to be driven by any other persons if at the time of his driving the vehicle the hirer or any other person is not the holder of a current driver's licence appropriate for the vehicle.


Return of the Vehicle

The hirer shall at or before the expiry of the term of hire, deliver the vehicle to the branch detailed in the Agreement, or obtain the owner's consent to the continuation of the hire. (Note: No refund is available to the hirer if the vehicle is returned earlier than stated in the Agreement).

The vehicle is to be returned in a clean and tidy condition. The vehicle is to be returned with the petrol level equal to that when they hired the vehicle, if it is not filled to the same level then a NZ$20 administration fee will apply in addition to the cost of the fuel. If not returned to the branch detailed, a relocation fee of NZ$500 may be charged.


Breach of Contract

The owner shall have the right to terminate the hire and take immediate possession of the vehicle if the hirer fails to comply with any Terms and Conditions of this agreement or if the vehicle is damaged. The termination of the hire under the authority of this clause shall be without prejudice to the other rights of the owner and the rights of the hirer under this agreement or otherwise. This agreement is subject to the laws of New Zealand.


Exchange Rate / Currency Fluctuations

All transactions are conducted in New Zealand dollars. Due to exchange rate fluctuations, there could be some variance between the amount initially debited against your credit card and the amount refunded at the expiration of the rental period. The owner is not liable for such variations. The owner is also not responsible for bank transfer charges, the charge of the hire is the charge payable excluding bank transfer charges.


Price BEAT Guarantee

For terms relating to our Price BEAT Guarantee please visit



We reserve the right to refuse any rental at our discretion. (Conditions and charges may change from time to time).