New Zealand is lucky to have a high standard of backpacker accommodation. You have the chance to stay in a variety of hostels, wilderness lodges and cabins.
Accommodation is not included in your Freestyle Pass however you can book this quickly and easily in the Stay Mate App. Once a credit/debit card is loaded to your Stray Mate account, you won't need any cash to pay for accommodation.
If you prefer to stay somewhere else, you are welcome to find your own accommodation.
Our Accommodation Guarantee
We guarantee a dorm bed at each stop along the route for the number of minimum nights on the itinerary. For most stops, this is one night, however at some places we stop for two nights (for example in Hahei, Blue Duck Station, Abel Tasman or Queenstown) so two nights' accommodation are guaranteed.
To secure your bed from the Stray allocation you must ensure you book via the Stray Mate App before the 'cut off time' which is usually 4pm the day before.
This guarantee is invaluable for travellers who often do not appreciate how busy it can get in New Zealand and how time-consuming it can be to find and secure a bed in a good hostel.
If you intend to hop off the bus and stay somewhere longer you will need to make another reservation for the extra nights that you choose to stay. These will be requested and won't come out of the Stray guaranteed allocation.
Two exceptions: We don't guarantee (hold allocations) on accommodation in Auckland, as Auckland is often the beginning or end of most Stray routes. We don't guarantee accommodation for minors/children as our accommodation providers usually require they stay in a private room with their parent or legal guardian.
How much does accommodation cost?
Normal backpacker hostel rates are about $27-$37 per night for a dorm bed and $60-$100 for a double/twin room, $70-120 for double/twin room with ensuite.
What is the Stray Preferred Accommodation like?
Our preferred accommodation venues usually offer a choice of dorm, double and twin share. During peak season (December - March) double/twin rooms may have limited availability.
The majority have full kitchen facilities, a TV lounge and internet.
This list includes some of our suggested accommodation around New Zealand for hop-on, hop-off passengers.
Please note, our Drivers are unable to offer recommendations on alternative providers due to health and safety compliance. However you are welcome to research your own.
At some very special stops, we get so far off the beaten track there is only one accommodation option available:
Dorm share accommodation is included with our Stray Journeys tours, with single and twin room upgrades available. To see the accommodation we stay in, visit the Stray Journey tour page and select the Accommodation tab.
Accommodation for Children/Minors
Freestyle Passes: If you are a parent or legal guardian travelling with a minor/child (aged 7-17 years) you will need to contact the accommodations prior to travel to make arrangements. Some will require you stay in a private room. Some may not permit children to stay at all.
Stray Journeys Tours: if you are travelling with a child/minor (aged 7-17 years) you will be required to book a private room. This is for the safety and comfort of all parties.