Guide to Inter-Island Moving in New Zealand

If you’re planning on travelling between New Zealand’s North and South islands to relocate for a new job, a new adventure or a change of scenery, it’s important to plan ahead. While there may not be a vast distance to cover, inter-island moving can be a tricky process when you consider all of the logistics. The first and most obvious question to answer is how you’ll get there. There is no bridge or tunnel to help you cross the 92 kilometre stretch of Crook Strait that separates the two main islands. The second question is how your belongings will get there. Unless you’re deciding to leave everything behind, you will need to make a plan with a moving service to courier your possessions via truck, air freight or sea freight. The final question is how you can make this plan work around your needs. To help with that, we’ve got extra services and cost-saving tips to make sure that moving between islands is as simple, affordable and stress-free as possible.

The route across the Cook Strait is one of the most breathtaking and beautiful places on earth. Whether you’re crossing it by sea or by air, make sure that all of the logistics are taken care of before you leave so that you can take the time to enjoy it. For help organising your inter-island move, reach out to our friendly moving consultants. Give us a call on 0800 255 433 or fill out the free quote request form today.

Getting there: flight or ferry?

While there may be a lot of logistics and details to iron out when relocating between islands, the first question you have to answer is very simple. Will you be taking a flight or a ferry? The answer to this will come down to a few factors, such as your location, your budget, your schedule and your goals. While choosing to travel by air is significantly quicker, and the view from above is stunning, few ferry rides on earth can compare to the spectacle of the inter-island ferry. Below we will take a more in-depth look at the advantages and details for each of these options.

Taking a plane

If efficiency is your main priority when it comes to your move, then taking a plane is going to be your best option. Flying across the strait only takes about twenty to thirty minutes, saving about three hours when compared to the ferry. If you’re travelling between the top of the North island and the bottom of the South, then the flight will shave a lot of time off your total journey. However, the downside of taking a plane is that you won’t have your vehicle with you and it’s going to cost more.

If you choose to get help from Allied movers, then this won’t be an issue. If you plan ahead, you can make sure that all of your possessions get to your destination when you need them. Giving you the extra time to enjoy your journey and focus on getting settled in your new home.

Taking a boat

The inter-island ferry is ideal for anyone prioritising costs over time. Taking a boat will cut the extra expenses associated with air travel while also allowing you to enjoy the incredible views from close up. The trip between islands by boat generally takes around three to three and a half hours, giving you plenty of time to soak up the scenery. In addition to lower costs and beautiful views, choosing the ferry also has the added advantage of allowing you to take your car.

When moving between islands, this can be a big benefit that grants you more flexibility to bring items with you and travel on your schedule. However, rental cars are not allowed on the ferry, so if you’re wanting to rent a car for your trip, you’ll need to book two separate legs of the journey which can be a hassle.

Moving your belongings: sea, air or truck?

When it comes to moving your belongings between islands, you have three main options: sea, air or truck. While the truck will still have to take the ferry, it is different to the sea freight option in terms of price, timing and available space. Below we’ll cover the important things to consider for each of these options.

Air freight

As with your travel, sending your items via plane is the fastest, but most expensive option. If your main priority is speed and efficiency, then air freight is the choice for you. The schedules for air freights are significantly quicker than shipping your items, so it enables you to get on with your life in your new home with minimal interruptions. The exact costs and times will depend on when you leave and which company you send it to. To learn more about moving your items between islands via air freight, get in touch with our moving consultants who can give you all the information you need to make an informed decision.

Sea freight

If you’re needing to move a lot of large items – such as furniture, gym equipment, musical instruments etc – then the sea freight option might be the right choice for you. Choosing to ship your items will allow you to either use a whole or partial shipping container, depending on your needs. This option can save a lot on costs when compared to sending it by air, though it can take significantly longer. This means you will either have to send your items well in advance of your move or spend some time in your new home without your valuables. Our moving team can help coordinate your freight, so contact us as early as possible if you would like help organising an inter-island freight shipment.

Moving truck

Hiring a moving truck is one of the most popular options when it comes to relocating your possessions between islands. Unless you have too many things to fit in a moving truck, then this option is simple and straightforward. Organising a moving truck with us also means you get the help of our moving specialists to help load and unload your items, plus any other moving services you may wish to organise. The price of a moving truck between islands is more expensive than a normal route as it will also need to use the inter-island ferry. This can be one of the most costly parts of the journey. The benefit of organising a moving truck through us is that you will have our experienced moving team overseeing your items throughout the entire trip. This adds an extra level of security and peace of mind.

Get help with your move and reduce stress

Moving home can be a stressful experience. Adding on the challenge of relocating your possessions between islands and coordinating the whole thing on your own can put unnecessary weight on your shoulders. Our teams have helped countless families, individuals and businesses make a smooth transition to a new life across the Crook Strait. Getting help can assist in reducing the stress, help you make a seamless transition and provide peace of mind for your transit. Whether you want some help coordinating your move, an extra set of hands for loading and unloading, or a full valet packing and unpacking service to cover every step of the moving journey, our team is here for you. Get in touch with us today to start planning a smooth inter-island move.

Saving money on an inter-island move

The price of moving between the North and South Islands will really depend on your needs, your schedule and your circumstances. However, there are a number of small steps you can take to cut costs for your move.

  • One of the simplest ways to bring down the price of your move is to plan early. The earlier you start booking flights, moving trucks, ferries and services, the less you will pay and the more chance you will be able to lock in dates that you want.
  • Another easy way to save on costs is to travel during off-peak, low-season times. If you’re willing or able to move during periods of low travel – such as weekdays, during school semesters etc – then you will be able to get yourself the cheapest deals.
  • Slower is cheaper: as we’ve mentioned throughout this guide, prioritising costs means sacrificing time. If you’re happy to choose the ferry instead of a plane or a sea freight instead of air freight, you can save some money for your move overall.
  • Discounts/reimbursement: if you are a veteran or a pensioner, it’s always worth looking for available discounts. If you’re moving for work, your company might be willing to reimburse you for some, or all of the costs of your move. It’s always worth enquiring.

Moving services across New Zealand

Allied offers a full range of moving services to assist you with every step of your journey. From packing, transit and storage services, to insurance, pet and vehicle transportation. If there is a part of your upcoming inter-island move that you’re not looking forward to, let us help you out. Check out our full range of additional services to learn more.

To find out more about any of the information covered in this guide, or to begin planning your move with our experienced team, contact us today or request a free quote.