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Buying a capmervan in NZ/OZ

What was your experience of buying a campervan in NZ/OZ to travel/stay in?
10 years ago, June 27th 2011 No: 1 Msg: #139292  

I am planning on buying a campervan in NZ for 5 weeks of travel. It's not very often I come across a blog where someone has actually bought a van. Did you do this and what was your experience of it? price? quality? paperwork? selling?

Thanks Reply to this

10 years ago, July 4th 2011 No: 2 Msg: #139655  

i was looking into this subject as well and the only blog I remember that gave all the facts was the below:


cheers Reply to this

10 years ago, July 4th 2011 No: 3 Msg: #139656  

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10 years ago, July 14th 2011 No: 4 Msg: #140260  
Hey Tina, not long now surely???

that link is actually for the finale of my Oz blog but sadly is probably not very relevant now as the Australian economy is booming and the dollar-sterling rate is terrible compared to what it was when we visited.

As for NZ, have you thought about hiring a van while you're there? Not sure what time of year you'll be there but we went in winter and we got an incredible deal from a company called Wicked. We picked the van up straight from the airport, had it just over four weeks, dropped it off and went straight back to the airport to fly out... I think from memory it cost us about £500 and that was with all the insurances, which was good as some idiot smashed into us while we were parked up..... There was three of us and it was fairly comfortable, so would be great with the two of you.

We had an absolute blast in our van, was truly a month to remember as we literally threw all our careful budgeting in the bin and went nuts doing everything we wanted... Good Times!!!!

A couple of friends did it last year with Wicked and they loved it too, also they noticed that on all their promotional literature they've got a picture of me sitting on one of their vans!!! I'm famous!!!! 😊 Reply to this

10 years ago, July 14th 2011 No: 5 Msg: #140261  
Hi Michael

Your blog is the only one I have ever found that gave the kinda info I am looking for. I posted this thread hoping I would get some others and as you say, a bit more up to date. That deal with Wicked sounds great and I would prefer that but as we will be there at peak time it will cost us about the same as buying, and with buying there is always a chance we will make our money back when we sell it on. Thats the hope anyway. I once read a blog where the couple got such a good deal on the van they bought that they sold it for a good profit!

Anyway, I suppose I can imagine buying a van could be more hassle than its worth, so was hoping to hear some stories but the forums are so quiet lately 😞 Reply to this

10 years ago, July 16th 2011 No: 6 Msg: #140379  
Yeh, summer is the worst on these forums as everyone is on holiday. You could always try Thorn Tree, although I think it's far too large and has become unmanageable. Some of the responses I've got from the few posts I've ever put on there has left me reluctant to use it again....

Anyway... Peak time? Yeh, the lady said when we dropped off our van that we'd probably end up spending the entire amount we did in NZ just on hiring the van if we'd of gone in peak season. As for hoping to make a good profit when selling, I wouldn't pin your hopes on that too much as it's definately the exception rather than the norm. Bear in mind in that 5 weeks, you have to find suitable wheels, pay for it, then readvertise it and sell it... Also you'll also probably want to see a bit of the country, that's a lot to squeeze in in 5 weeks. It took us a week in Oz to find ours and we left two to sell it, although thankfully it went in only a couple of days, but we did sell it for less than we bought it!

I can only speak about Oz as that's where I focused my research, but i heard more stories from people who had to just dump theirs at the airport as they couldn't sell it in time, rather than people who made money on it. We expected to lose money on ours hoping that any loss would be swamped by the saving on accomodation and transport, which thankfully was definately the case. I did work with a guy who made about $2000 on his van, BUT, when I pressed him further it turned out that it wasn't entirely sound and the head cracked leaving him stranded for two weeks while it was fixed. He also spent $1500 on repairs. So he actually made $500. But was being stuck in the middle of nowhere while the parts were sourced shipped and fitted worth it? Probably not!

I've just reread what I've written and it sounds a little negative, I didn't mean it to be. I'd never discourage anyone from getting their own wheels and exploring NZ, I think it's definately the best way to do it. Just don't hope too much to walk away with loads of profit. Then again you could be the exception. 😊

Just a thought... some places in Oz have a buy back scheme where they'll buy back the vehicle when you're done (at a lower price than you bought it of course), you can always try and sell it yourself but if you run out of time at least you can get rid if it quick by selling it back, and I'm sure the loss would be far less than hiring. Not even sure if NZ has schemes like this but it might be worth looking into.

Not long now... you must literally be bursting with excitment eh? 😊 Reply to this

10 years ago, July 16th 2011 No: 7 Msg: #140406  
Hi Michael

To be honest if I was able to sell for profit, I think I would feel a bit guilty. If us travellers stuck together with things like this we could all get a van (or whatever)for a good honest price and sell it on for a good honest price. Being poor backpackers and all.

However, I don't think for one second I would actually be able sell for profit but I would like to think a bit more than half of what we paid for it and I would be happy.

My nightmare is buying a dud.Getting stuck with a van that has cost us approx £2500 and it not working or being worth fixing. That would be hell. It would cut our trip short. This is what really puts me off buying but I can't bear the thought of spending £2k on hiring, and thats just the van, on top of that theres fuel, food, doing stuff. It would cost a fortune.

I am very excited but at the moment I can feel that being over shadowed by panic. The one thing I keep telling myself, as told by others, when we land in Rio, all the worry will disappear! Reply to this

10 years ago, July 17th 2011 No: 8 Msg: #140420  

a bit more than half of what we paid for it and I would be happy.

With these kind of very sensible expectations I think you'll be absolutly fine. As for getting a dud? Sadly there's no guarantees with anything, you could buy a spectacular looking vehicle that goes a few hundred Km then dies or some rusty piece o' crap that goes on and on forever. Just make sure you look at a few before you decide, that way you can set a benchmark about what you can get for your money. Maybe have it checked over by a mechanic first, I'm sure it would be easy to arrange for a fee, but at least it would put your mind at ease a bit.

Ahhh that familiar swell of panic... It's all excitement while planning then as the date draws near, it's slowly replaced by apprehension. Wait till you're saying farewell to loved ones and at the airport, then you'll be seriously bricking it!!! 😊

I don't think it maters how well travelled you are it's the same everytime... we were a mess at the airport leaving the UK, and we'd done it all before!!! 😊
[Edited: 2011 Jul 18 11:32 - MichaelnFaye:21816 - Typo]
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