Frequently Asked Questions – New Zealand
1. Are Apollo motorhomes and campervans easy to drive?
We understand how important your peace of mind is when driving an unfamiliar vehicle in unfamiliar surroundings. From the thousands of customers and staff who have driven our motorhomes and campervans, we have had nothing but surprise and pleasure at how easy our vehicles are to drive.
Driving a motorhome is slightly different to driving a car, as they are diesel engine commercial vehicles. However, as long as you are familiar with driving a vehicle with manual transmission, your driving experience will be simple and easy as you enjoy the comfort, luxury and safety of an Apollo Motorhome!
2. Do I need a special driver's licence?
On pick up of the vehicle a full (non provisional) and valid driver's licence must be presented in person by all people wishing to drive the vehicle. If the licence is not in English, an International driver's licence or valid, certified translation is also required. The minimum age to drive Apollo vehicles is 21 years, and the maximum age is 75 years.
3. Where can I drive my Apollo vehicle?
Two Wheel Drive Vehicles can only be driven on sealed/bitumen roads. The only exception to this is the last remaining kilometres of loose road surface on any major ski field access roads or any recognised campground access road less than 5 kilometres in length.
Other travel restrictions apply as specified in our Terms and Conditions, and Apollo occasionally restricts vehicle movements in certain areas due to adverse road or weather conditions.
4. Where do we camp at night?
We strongly recommend you stay in a caravan (RV) park. New Zealand has an extensive network of caravan parks in all major tourist centres and most towns. Caravan parks offer excellent recreational opportunities, plus essential shower and toilet facilities. Powered sites enable you to connect your vehicle to electricity. The approximate cost is NZ$20-30 per night.
Most New Zealand national parks have areas set aside for camping. There are often showers, toilets, barbecues and picnic areas. National parks are also beautiful and peaceful locations to stay overnight. However, national parks do not usually offer powered sites.
Council laws prohibit camping on the side of the road near towns and cities. However, outside towns and in country areas it is generally permitted.
Apollo provides all clients with discount vouchers which can be used at a variety of camping sites, attractions and tourist parks around New Zealand.
5. How long does the battery system last?
The battery system will provide power for between 12 - 20 hours when fully charged depending on use.
Apollo vehicles operate on ancillary battery systems which power internal appliances such as the fridge, lights and water pump.
The batteries only recharge when you drive the vehicle or when connected to mains power. Idling the engine won't provide enough power to recharge the house battery.
When you are connected, all equipment automatically runs on mains power rather than the battery.
Appliances such as the television, microwave, rear air-conditioning and power points only run on mains power.
For the 12 Volt system to work, the 12 Volt main switch must be in the 'on' position. All vehicles can be connected to 240 Volt mains power via the supplied 15 Amp extension lead with large earth pin. All approved caravan park circuits are rated at 15 amps.
6. What is supplied with Apollo campervans and motorhomes?
Each campervan and motorhome is supplied with complimentary living equipment such as bedding, cooking equipment, eating utensils, bath and tea towels.
Apollo also supplies a complimentary Welcome Pack for your first night. The pack contains matches, mini shampoo and conditioner, dishwashing liquid, sponge, soap, salt and pepper, coffee, tea and sugar sachets.
Vehicles are also supplied with comprehensive maps and camp ground guides, as well as a free Apollo magazine containing travel information and discount vouchers.
We strongly recommend you use soft bags instead of suitcases for your luggage. Soft bags take up less room and fit more easily into the storage cupboards and lockers in the vehicle.
7. When and where can I pick up and drop off my Apollo vehicle?
Apollo's New Zealand branches are situated in Auckland and Christchurch, with free airport transport available. Apollo branches are open 7 days from 8am to 4.30pm, but are closed on Christmas Day, New Years Day and Good Friday. All Apollo branches are situated close to airports for your convenience.
8. Do you have roadside assistance should I have a breakdown or accident?
Apollo provides 24 hour roadside assistance for your peace of mind. Please call Apollo's toll free number at any time and speak to the fleet department in the unlikely event you have an accident or breakdown.
9. What is the Cost of Fuel?
Petrol (Gasoline) in New Zealand comes in unleaded and leaded grades, and is sold by the litre. Petrol and diesel fuel costs upwards of $1.60 NZD per litre.
Please note that the exact prices can differ between petrol stations. For more accurate information at the time of travel, please contact the local branch.
10. Why should I choose the VIP Protection Package?
For your peace of mind during yourself drive holiday, the VIP Protection Package is the best way to minimises your liability when travelling in a hired vehicle. If you do not take the VIP Protection Package you run the risk of being responsible for considerable costs associated with damage to, or theft of, the vehicle. This applies even if the damage was not your fault.
For example, you are liable if someone runs into you or if a rock from a passing car hits your windscreen and causes damage. Also, you are responsible for the subsequent costs if you are unlucky enough to puncture a tyre.
VIP Protection gives you peace of mind in such circumstances, as you will only be liable for a limited amount unless you breach the terms and conditions of the rental contract. We recommend you also take appropriate travel insurance for your peace of mind while travelling in New Zealand.
11. How do I organize my FREE airport transfer from the Auckland or Christchurch branch?
Apollo happily provides free airport transfers for your New Zealand motorhome rental. Once you arrive in New Zealand and you are ready for your transfer, please call us on 0800 113 131 and follow the appropriate phone prompts. We will then arrange for our special Apollo shuttle service to collect you from the airport.
12. Can Apollo motorhomes and campervans play MP3 CDs/do they have an iPod jack?
All Apollo campervans and motorhomes can play MP3 CDs. However, most vehicles are not fitted with iPod jacks. You can purchase a radio transmitter at most electronic stores which will enable you to play your iPod in your Apollo rental vehicle.
13. Do I have to pay a bond?
Depending on which liability option you choose, a bond will be either debited from your credit card, or an authorisation taken. Please refer to our Terms and Conditions for the full range of liability and bond options.
14. Are there cancellation fees?
Some fees may apply if you cancel your rental booking. Please refer to Apollo's Terms and Conditions for full details.
15. Do I need snow chains?
Apollo provides snow chains for a fee of $50 per rental (must be pre-booked). Usually snow chains are only required if you are going to be skiing, or if you are travelling in winter during bad weather and over mountainous terrain. Chains are also required by law to travel on Milford Rd between July and October.
16. What are toll roads, and do I have to pay to use them?
Toll roads are roads which charge a fee in exchange for access through to your destination. If you are touring New Zealand's North Island, you may pass through the Northern Gateway Toll Road. When driving a rental vehicle in New Zealand, you are responsible for paying toll fees, so it is important to be aware of payment options before you travel. Visit the Northern Gateway Toll Road website for more information.
IMPORTANT: Please be aware that the information above serves to answer frequently asked questions only. For full Apollo Terms and Conditions please refer to your Apollo Rental Agreement.