Using the NZ Inter-Island Ferry Service
with Campervan and Car Rentals

INTERISLANDER operate daily ferry services across Cook Strait between Wellington on the North Island and Picton in the South. The 92km journey takes 3 hours and 45 minutes with breathe-taking scenery as you enter Marlborough Sounds and pass through Tory Channel and Queen Charlotte Sound down to Picton. Bookings can be made by visiting www.interislander.co.nz. In the peak summer months the ferry service is very popular and advanced bookings are a must.

Campervan rental companies permit the use of the ferry with their vehicles. Some suppliers charge an additional one way fee where a campervan is picked up on one island and returned on another. Check with your supplier when you pick up your vehicle.

Car rental companies have varying policies on their vehicles and use of the ferry service. In some instances this includes costly relocation fees and insurance coverage being suspended. The following summarises these policies. Whilst every effort is undertaken to ensure that this is accurate and current, DriveNow recommends checking with your rental provider when picking up your vehicle as to terms and conditions are subject to change beyond our control.

Hertz and Firefly

Hertz and Firefly do not permit their vehicles to be taken on the ferry and substantial fees apply where vehicles are returned on a different island. With branches located at both the ferry wharf in Wellington on the North Island and Picton on the South Island it's easy to leave your car at one and collect at the other. This saves you the cost and hassle of transporting your car between the islands.

To use this service:

  • Make a single booking through DriveNow
  • Hertz will split your rental into 2 separate bookings, one for each island
  • A minimum 4 days consecutive rental is required with a minimum 3 days on the first island
  • Requires a minimum of 5 days’ notice if a cross-over booking has not been made
  • Second vehicle must be collected within 5 hours of dropping of the first (ferry time is 3.45 hours)
  • Restrictions apply to 4 wheel drive, luxury cars and people movers
  • A NZ$50 fee on top of existing booking cost will be added when you pick-up your vehicle.

Advise Hertz when picking up your vehicle about when you intend to travel on the ferry (or call them 48 hours in advance of your ferry crossing).


Avis

AVIS do not permit their vehicles to be taken on the ferry. Any vehicle travelling on the ferry is not covered by insurance. Should a vehicle be picked up in one island and dropped off on the other a minimum relocation fee of NZ$450 will be applied.

Avis operate a special rental system known as "Multi-island Hire". This allows for a single rental booking with the same rate covering 2 vehicles one on each island.

To use this service:

  • Make a single booking through DriveNow
  • Avis require a minimum 3 days consecutive rental on each island (6 days rental in total)
  • Minimum 5 days consecutive rental on each island is required for all wagons, 4WD’s and People Mover Vans (10 days rental in total)
  • Must use Ferry between Wellington & Picton or fly between Christchurch & Rotorua
  • Second vehicle must be collected within 5 hours of dropping of the first (ferry time is 3.45 hours)
  • A Ferry Terminal fee applies
  • Avis require a minimum of 72 hours’ notice if a cross-over booking has not been made
  • If you intend to travel more than once between the 2 Islands the third leg of your journey can be of any duration as long as the first 2 legs meet the 6 (or 10) day minimum requirement

If you cannot meet the Multi-island Hire requirements then 2 separate rental bookings with separate rates will be required.

Talk with the AVIS team when you pick up your vehicle about your inter-island travel plans.

Budget

BUDGET do not permit their vehicles to be taken on the ferry. Any vehicle travelling on the ferry is not covered by insurance. Should a vehicle be picked up in one island and dropped off on the other a minimum relocation fee of NZ$450 will be applied.

Budget operate a special rental system known as "Multi-island Hire". This allows for a single rental booking with the same rate covering 2 vehicles one on each island.

To use this service:

  • Make a single booking through DriveNow
  • Avis require a minimum 3 days consecutive rental on each island (6 days rental in total)
  • Minimum 5 days consecutive rental on each island is required for all wagons, 4WD’s and People Mover Vans (10 days rental in total)
  • Must use Ferry between Wellington & Picton or fly between Christchurch & Rotorua
  • Second vehicle must be collected within 5 hours of dropping of the first (ferry time is 3.45 hours)
  • A Ferry Terminal fee applies
  • Budget require a minimum of 72 hours’ notice if a cross-over booking has not been made
  • If you intend to travel more than once between the 2 Islands the third leg of your journey can be of any duration as long as the first 2 legs meet the 6 (or 10) day minimum requirement.

If you cannot meet the multi-island hire requirements then 2 separate rental bookings with separate rates will be required.

Talk with Budget when you pick up your vehicle about your inter-island travel plans.

If you wish to collect your rental car outside of the normal operating hours for Budget Picton & Budget Wellington Ferry Terminal, a 'Meet Late Arrival' fee of NZD $50 + GST will apply. Please refer to the following pages for location opening hours, contact details, and location maps:

Budget Inter-Island Info

Europcar, Keddy and Inter-Rent

Europcar, Keddy and Inter-Rent vehicles are not permitted to travel on the ferry between the North and South islands in New Zealand.

Where your drop-off location is on a different island you need simply specify the pick-up and drop-off locations (for example Christchurch and Auckland) and your booking will be split by the rental company into 2 separate bookings with a drop-off and pick-up at the ferry terminal at either end of the Inter-Island service in Picton or Wellington.

To use this service:

  • Make a single booking through DriveNow
  • Europcar will split your rental into 2 separate bookings, one for each island
  • Contact Europcar to confirm the cross-over date and time
  • Europcar require a minimum of 72 hours’ notice if a cross-over booking has not been made
Europcar Inter-Island Info

Thrifty

Thrifty vehicles are not permitted to travel on the ferry between the North and South islands in New Zealand. All insurance cover is voided if a vehicle is taken on the ferry and other financial penalties may apply.

Thrifty have offices at both ferry terminals in Picton and in Wellington. If you plan to tour both islands you won't have to worry about the ferry expense of taking the car across.

To use this service:

  • Make a single booking through DriveNow
  • Include in the Comments section when you plan to make the crossing
  • Thrifty will split your rental into 2 separate bookings, one for each island
  • Drop off and collect your vehicles from the Ferry terminal at either end
Thrifty Inter-Island Info

Go Rentals

Go Rentals vehicles are permitted to be taken across on the Inter-Island ferry service.

Go Rentals Inter-Island Info

Jucy Rental

Jucy do allow their vehicles to be taken onboard the Inter-Island Ferry services at no extra charge. Note that Jucy does not have branches at either the Wellington or Picton Ferry Terminals.

Updated October 2016

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