Driving in New Zealand

Bee aware of your responsibilities in your Buzzy Rental Car...


Are you from overseas? The following information about driving in New Zealand and about our road rules may beWhats different about driving in New Zealand helpful. You will need to meet a number of requirements to drive on New Zealand roads.

The following is a quick look at major requirements. You can read much more by visiting the New Zealand Transport Agency website and downloading in your language “What’s Different About Driving In New Zealand”.

Please also see the Drive Safe in New Zealand website.  This specially-designed website explains so much about what is different about driving in New Zealand.  We recommend all Buzzy Rental Cars hirers coming from overseas check out this excellent site.


overseas tourists use international driving permitYou can drive a Buzzy Rental Car in New Zealand if you hold a current and valid driver licence or driving permit from another country, and you entered New Zealand within the last twelve months.

If your licence is not in the English language, you will need an approved translation into English or an international driving permit.

If you also hold a New Zealand licence, that takes precedence over the foreign document. If you have had your New Zealand licence suspended or disqualified, you may not drive using an alternative overseas licence.

These are not Buzzy Rental Cars rules – they are a legal requirement. If for some reason you are stopped in your Buzzy Rental Car by the Police, (we've told them Buzzy drivers are good drivers) you’ll need to produce your licence, translation or permit, as above. Failure to do so could cause the Police stopping you going any further.  You don't want that - and nor do we at Buzzy Rental Cars.

Responsible Driving

That is, driving with the safety and convenience of all road users in mind!

safe drivingThe law says you must not operate a vehicle in a condition or manner which could injure any person or animal; cause annoyance to other people; cause damage to property; or be a distraction to a driver.

Cell phone usage by drivers is against the law. The only exceptions are 1) using a cell phone to talk when the unit is fixed and hands free, and 2) to make emergency 111 or *555 calls and it is impractical to pull over to a stop.

You should not play music in your car that is so loud that you cannot hear emergency sirens, the sound of warning bells (such as railway crossings) or sounds that your car may be making - like a buzzy bee caught in the headlight.


Give Way

All road users are required to obey road signs and signals.  All Buzzy Rental Car users would know that!

If you are turning, Give Way to all vehicles not turning.give way signgive way rules in New Zealand

If you are turning right, Give Way to all vehicles coming towards you including those turning left.

The following applies if there are no signs or signals, or facing the same sign (for example, both on a compulsory stop opposite each other):

The law requires all traffic turning right to give way to a vehicle coming from the opposite direction and turning left.

At a T-intersection, all traffic from the terminating road should Give Way to all traffic on a continuing road. This change also applies at uncontrolled driveways, such as at supermarkets, a hospital car park, etc.

Going up or down steep or narrow roads, there is an un-written rule that downhill traffic gives way to uphill traffic (as uphill vehicles are more difficult to get going again).

Overtaking – or Being Overtaken

If you are going slower in your Buzzy Rental Car than the pace of traffic, please do pull over to the left where possible and let following traffic get ahead of you. Much as it is an offence to go too fast in a Buzzy car, it is also an offense to go too slow and hinder the smooth flow of traffic.

Should you need to overtake a slower vehicle, be aware that you must not overtake where there is a yellow line on your side of the white line in the middle of the road.

Seat Belts and Child Restraints

wear your sealt belts buckle-up signalways wear your seat beltsNew Zealand law requires the driver and all passengers in a Buzzy Rental Car to use a seatbelt and/or approved child restraint.

Did you know, it is solely the driver’s responsibility to ensure children aged 7 years or less are correctly secured to an approved child restraint, and that children aged 8 to 14 years are wearing a seat belt? Buzzy Rental Cars have approved child restraints for hire at reasonable rates.

Did you also know that passengers 15 years and over are themselves responsible to ensure they are wearing a seat belt?  Uh oh!

buzzy bee



don't drink and driveDo you want the bottom line up front?  If you've had a drink, don't drive!  If something happens you'll probably be on your own.

The law says you must not drive if the amount of alcohol in your blood or breath exceeds certain age-related limits. If you exceed these limits you could be charged with drink driving (driving under the influence of alcohol), resulting in fines and loss of license. You rental vehicle insurance may also be affected.

If you are under 20 years of age, there is a zero alcohol limit – you cannot drive if you’ve had a drink!

For those 20 and over, on a full license, you must not drive if your blood/alcohol limit is 250 micrograms per litre of breath, or 80 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood. These limits could be subject to change at any time.