New Zealand is a destination worthy of anyone’s bucket list. This New Zealand packing guide will tell you exactly what you need to pack for a perfect trip.
This packing guide focuses on the items you’ll need for a trip to New Zealand in the summer. In New Zealand, the summer months are December through March.
Because New Zealand is a relatively long country separated by two main islands, you should be aware of the weather at each stop along your trip.
For example, Auckland and Queenstown both average high temperatures in the 70s Fahrenheit (F) during January and February. But while Auckland averages lows in the 60s F during these months, Queenstown averages lows in the upper 40s F.
To help you plan an amazing trip, this New Zealand packing guide will tell you everything you need to pack.
Have a fantastic time!
- 15 Things You Need to Know Before Visiting New Zealand
- 8 Can’t-Miss Things To Do In Queenstown, New Zealand
- Auckland, New Zealand: 8 Can’t-Miss Things to Do & See
A couple things to keep in mind when packing for New Zealand:
- Attire in New Zealand is on the casual side. Be prepared to see a lot of athletic shoes and attire, from both locals and tourists. Even the high-end restaurants we visited during our trip permitted casual attire.
- Temperatures in New Zealand can feel on the cool side, even in the summer. Lots of light layers will help you keep warm.
Now let’s get on to the New Zealand packing guide!
As mentioned above, New Zealand can be quite cool temperature-wise, even in the summer. I recommend packing mostly light, long-sleeved tops. You’ll be able to layer these tops for added warmth and remove layers as the day heats up.
I tend to wear long pants while traveling. Long pants help prevent bug bites and sunburn. Plus, pants look a little more polished than shorts.
In New Zealand, the cooler weather and biting bugs make long pants an essential on your packing list.
A variety of jackets are a necessity for most trips. Jackets are especially important in New Zealand, where it can snow on mountain peaks even in the summer.
I like to bring a warm packable jacket for chillier days. Since it’s packable it takes up very little room in my luggage.
A light jacket is great as a layer on top of a short-sleeved shirt. A rain jacket is essential for rainy and misty days. And a light scarf is great warmth worn over just about anything.
Because attire in New Zealand tends to be on the casual side, so are the shoes. Adidas were the most common shoes that I saw when strolling through Queenstown and Auckland.
If you’re planning on doing any kind of hiking, pack some hiking shoes. Just make sure to thoroughly clean your hiking shoes before packing them. Seeds in the dirt on your shoes can bring invasive plants to other countries. New Zealand customs officials are serious about stopping foreign organisms from entering their country.
While attire is generally casual, a nice pair of sandals are great to bring along for the occasional nice dinner. And tennis shoes are always a good idea.
New Zealand has some fun water activities (like speed boats). Although the water is generally too cold to swim in without a wet suit, a swimsuit is much more comfortable under a wet suit than nothing.
Sunglasses are a necessity for any trip and a knit hat is perfect for cold mornings.
I also recommending packing a casual dress for the occasional nice dinner.
As with all the attire and accessories for New Zealand, bags and purses are on the casual side.
I often travel with a sling backpack. It’s easy to move the backpack around to your front when walking through crowded areas.
A crossbody bag is another essential travel item for me. It provides a more polished look than a backpack. Plus, its contents are easily accessible when you need to grab something quickly.
I love the return of the belt bag (aka, fanny pack). It’s perfect for when you want to run to dinner and only need a room key and credit card. And a light, packable backpack is great to throw into your luggage to have at the ready.
While I wish you clear skies and fair weather for your trip, there’s a good chance that you’ll run into some rain. Make sure to pack an umbrella so you’re not left drenched.
A water bottle for easy hydration and sunscreen to prevent trip-ruining sunburn are always a good idea.
And finally, bug spray. The bugs in New Zealand can be brutal. Stop those suckers (literally) in their tracks with bug spray.
I hope this New Zealand packing guide has helped you to prepare for your trip! For more tips to help you plan your trip, check out this article. Happy travels!