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How Stray Works

When you travel New Zealand with Stray, you have the choice of a Freestyle Travel Pass, or an all-inclusive Stray Journey tour. Here's some help understanding how it works and what is best for you!


Freestyle Travel Passes (Hop-On Hop-Off)

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 How Hop-on Hop-off works: 

  • Choose a Freestyle Travel Pass
  • Make your way around its travel route in the time that suits you 
  • "Hop" off the bus anywhere at anytime, to stay longer, visit friends or even work for a while.
  • Then "hop" back on again by booking yourself back on the bus using the 'Stray Mate New Zealand' App (available in the App Store and on Google Play).

It is that easy! The buses run several times a week (check the timetable).  If you are short on time, you don't have to ever "hop off" - you can also use your Stray bus pass like a tour and complete the itinerary in its "Minimum Days". With this you will still enjoy outstanding locations and unique attractions around New Zealand, and we have included some non-travel days to break up your journey.

Pass Validity 

Freestyle Passes are valid for 12 months from the date of purchase (unless promotional terms apply). Once your trip has commenced, you have a further 12 months to complete your pass. You can re-travel most sectors of your Freestyle pass.
Re-travel Exclusions: All sectors north of Auckland (Auckland > Paihia > Cape Reinga > Paihia > Auckland), the 'Christchurch - Greymouth' sector and the 'Rotorua to Auckland' sector (included in the Jerry & Jerry Hopper Pass) are excluded from re-travel. Re-travel must be booked through [email protected] and cannot be booked in the 'Stray Mate’ app. Retravel is offered on a ‘space available’ basis (i.e. standby) and first-time travellers are prioritised. On the day you will need to present photo ID to your Driver. Anyone deemed to be abusing Stray’s travel policies will be immediately removed from the bus and charged for any unauthorised travel.


Accommodation is not included but at every Stray overnight stop you'll have a bed reserved - that's guaranteed - so while you're travelling with us, you don't need to worry! Simply book through our Stray Mate app and pay-as-you-go. Stray's preferred accommodation includes lodges, cabins and hostels. The bus will pick you up and drop you off to  Stray-preferred accommodation venues.



Activities are not included, but your Driver Guide tell you about the best things to do at each destination and you can book via the Stray Mate app at the discounted Stray price. This way you only pay for the activities you want to do on a pay-as-you-go basis. 



All passes are guided by a fun Driver Guide whose main job is to ensure you have a great time! Need help? Just ask. They are a valuable source of kiwi knowledge. 



Travel in comfort on Stray's modern air conditioned bus fleet. We recommend booking seats in advance during peak season (Nov - March) when the network is busy. We make stops along the way to show you amazing things, like a beautiful waterfall, short scenic walk, local food tasting or breathtaking view!


Stray Journeys

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Stray Journeys are small group tours based on a fixed itinerary where you stay with the same guide and group of travellers. 

Think of it as a road trip experience, where your guide takes you on a once-of-a-lifetime journey, with plenty of awesome stops along the way showing you the real New Zealand!

What's included? 

  • Bus transport around New Zealand
  • Inter-island transport between North and South Island (for National Tours)
  • Local knowledge, entertaining commentary and bookings service from your tour guide
  • All accommodation, dorm-share (upgrades available)
  • Some meals and a selection of activities (as indicated on each tour's itinerary)
  • Special deals on optional extra activities

What's not included?

Any additional activities not specified as included on the itinerary. These can be booked via your guide, often at an exclusive Stray special price!

Got more questions? 

Read Frequently Asked Questions