Dining out in New Zealand offers a wide range of cuisine styles and budget options. But larger cities will offer you more options than a small village or town, which may only have 1 or 2 choices.
The style of cuisine will be more extensive in cities, where you’ll find all manner of international eateries and fusion style restaurants. In many cities you'll find an amazing array of dining options and Wellingtonians and Aucklanders, in particular, argue over whose city has the most vibrant restaurant culture.
As a guide, you can expect to pay between NZ$25 and NZ$35 per main dinner course for most restaurants and cafés. Tipping is not expected in New Zealand so do not feel obligated to always leave an additional tip.
Breakfast at a local café will generally cost between NZ$15 and NZ$25 depending on the café style and location. Bed and Breakfast and boutique lodges will often include breakfast in the room rate, which will generally work out cheaper than dining out.
A cheaper option to dining out at restaurants and cafés is the abundance of take-away meals available. You will be spoiled for choice in the larger cities, with most smaller towns having multiple take away options as well. Classic Asian options like Indian and Thai; recognisable fast food chains like MacDonalds and Burger King; the Kiwi favourite, fish and chips; and many more - take away options are available in abundance.
Expect to pay between NZ$20-30 for a take away meal for two people.
The most cost effective way to dine as you travel through New Zealand is to self-cater. We have a fantastic range of motel and apartment style accommodation that offers kitchenettes or full kitchens so that you are able to prepare you own meals.
Supermarkets will be within easy reach of most of the accommodation you will stay at, with a few exceptions in the more remote locations. We will advise you when your accommodation will not be near shops, so you can plan ahead and buy groceries before arriving.
I you are interested in sampling some local flavours, many New Zealand towns hold farmers' markets on weekends. These are often great places to find tasty treats produced by local artisans or buy fresh and organic fruits and vegetables.
Head to our Blog to read more about what you can expect from the cuisine on offer throughout New Zealand.
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