This company is the definition of incompetent, and unless you enjoy experie...
Last Updated: 10/25/19
Budgy Campers is one of three brands under one parent company that operates Budgy, Euro Campers, and Heron Campers. It focuses on older yet affordable 2-berth campervans in New Zealand, with depots in Auckland and Christchurch. All of their vehicles carry the official self-contained certification sticker, giving you access to many extra free campsites in the country.
Unlike the other motorhome brands offered by their parent company, Budgy Campers offers reliable vehicles at a cheap cost. Their old but very economical campervans are ideal for those who wish to travel on a shoe-string budget. Thus, you can utilize your money on more significant attractions and activities. Aside from their affordable rates, a very enticing package, or what they call as the ‘Goodies Package’ keeps them on top of other budget campervans on the road. Such package features unique additions like a phone with local SIM Card, GPS, Wi-Fi, Internet modem, fuel discount card, and camping table & chairs, which are all very rare for budget-range campervan hire in New Zealand. And if you think that's all they could offer, well think again because their insurance already covers the tyre and windscreen replacement, underbody and roof damage and an extra driver!
And as you hit the road and explore the picturesque roads, it's best that you know the freedom camping rules beforehand so that you will have more fun and convenient holiday.
Budgy Campers supplies older but reliable campervans at a low price. They only have 3 campers on offer and a motorhome borrowed from their other brand, Euro Campers. The Budgy Sleeper and the Budgy Traveller are the core campervans available for rent. The campervans are technically 2-berth, but the Budgy Traveller can accommodate up to three, if you are travelling with a child. Their fleet is pretty old, ranging from 1994- 1999 with some newer 2005 campers creeping in from late 2017, so you may want to lower your expectations because these are totally different from mid-range to top-end campervans on the road. Well, the name itself, Budgy Campers, gives you a hint of what the company offers—budget campervans. Despite the older campervan versions, they always make sure to put an effort in servicing and maintaining their vehicles.
All Budgy campervans have one thing in common—they are all self-contained. These vehicles give you freedom and flexibility during your vacation on the road. You can access certain camping locations in New Zealand without paying additional campground fees, making your road trip more exciting and money-saver. Each campervan also provides outdoor and vehicle maintenance equipment for added convenience.
Since Budgy Campers only have two campervans (really), let’s start off with their Budgy Sleeper, which is run by a 1994/ 1997 Toyota Lucida. This campervan features an automatic transmission, making it very easy to drive for people that are used to driving on the right-hand side of the road (drive on the LEFT in NZ). Aside from the fully-equipped cooking and sleeping essentials, you will also be happy with the spacious storage underneath the bed, which can fit at least two backpacks. Being a “sleepervan” there are few bells and whistles and like most in this class, it is simply a modified people-mover van so be careful as there is no 2nd ‘house battery’ added to this sleepervan meaning if you run too many DC items out of the cigarette lighter overnight, you won’t be able to start the car in the morning.
The Budgy Traveller, on the other hand, is operated by a 1999 Toyota Hiace with the Plus model being newer, but not, new. This particular campervan is ideal for couples travelling with a kid as it features a child seat that can be fitted in the driver's cabin. This roomy campervan is a hi-top camper so no need to crouch over when inside - fully upright standing is the go – which is a nice element often overlooked by budget model camper brands. Unlike the sleepervan mentioned earlier, this vehicle is a fully equipped campervan with 2nd house battery, build in fridge, sink, cupboards and the like. It was purpose-built to be a campervan, not a re-imagining of a mini-van.
Obviously the owners thought that having only 2 berth campervans available was stifling business a little, so why not just drop a motorhome from one of the other brands into the Budgy brand. Makes good business sense to me and hence we now have the Familia 6 Berth Motohorhome available through Budgy Campers. It is a fairly standard 6 berth motorhome based on the Mercedes Benz brand circa 2010. It's fairly standard across the board for kitchen, toilet, shower and sleeping facilities but I must admit I do like the seating arrangement, which is not really that standard. To read more about it and the whole Eurocampers fleet click here.
With Budgy Campers' standard insurance or also called as "Risk Taker, you are liable for an excess amounting to $3, 000 to $5, 000. You have two options to reduce such by paying an additional daily amount. At $15 to $25 per day, the excess/ bond is limited to $1, 500 to $2, 000. And at $29 to $44 per day, you reduce the excess/ bond to $0. All insurance options are capped at a max of 50 days.
Over the years, Budgy Campers has maintained a 9- 10 rating, making it one of the top choices for budget-ranged campers in New Zealand. Yes, Budgy Campers features older campervans, but these vehicles are still very brilliant and reliable on the road. There may be minor issues because of the aged models on fleet like run-down exteriors, curtains falling down, faulty fuel gauge and the like but the company assures an exciting road trip even with those drawbacks as they provide unique additions to the normal campervan hire. And take note that all their campers are self-contained, which gives you the flexibility to camp for free at designated camping locations in New Zealand and is definitely a bonus.
Budgy Campers focuses on providing affordable campervan hire through their limited yet self-contained campervans. The old-fashioned vehicles may be an issue for sophisticated travellers, but all these campervans are serviced regularly by their maintenance team. The 'Goodie Package' is also a plus factor, which features a technology bundle such as GPS, Wi-Fi, Internet modem. And of course, the carefree insurance is seriously a great deal because only a few companies in New Zealand include tyre and windshield replacement and even an extra driver in the insurance coverage. Thus, Budgy Campers is on top of other budget campervan hires in the country.
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This company is the definition of incompetent, and unless you enjoy experiencing endless frustration, dealing with inept employees who excel in lying and fabrication, being out of pocket due to sub par products, and just generally desire a horrible holiday experience, STAY AWAY!
We travelled to New Zealand in March for two weeks, staying in a 6 berth Budgy campervan that very early on we began to notice issues with, specifically involving retaining power and subsequently having access to hot water. The main reason we opted for a campervan as most travellers do, is that they offer the opportunity to camp without access to external power sources, meaning we could stay at free or low cost camp grounds. However this was in no way our experience when dealing with this company, instead remaining out of pocket for accommodation at holiday parks because without these, we had no lights, no hot showers, no baths for our 9 month old son, and nothing good to say about what we purchased. Even after the problem was diagnosed, Budgy campers refused to rectify the issue by replacing the batteries in our van, despite the fact our holiday was several days from completion. They consistently blamed us for being out of reception range when they supposedly attempted to contact us, or us making it too difficult for them to resolve the problems due to our changing locations. The list of problems we encountered goes on, from retaining our credit card details and charging us after we had returned to Australia for items they had forgotten, when we were informed our card would not be kept on record once we had returned the van, to not providing a car seat for our son to be securely seated in on the return trip to Auckland airport, instead being left to sit on our lap and have an adult seatbelt to keep him “safe” - DO NOT BOOK WITH THIS COMPANY!
3 months on from our return home, we have attempted repeatedly to contact Budgy campers to no avail, only reaching a meager resolution to our repeated problems in the last week after threatening legal action. Be wary of this company’s cheap prices, you get what you pay for!
We had a very bad experience with budgy. First when we took the campervan, they forgort some part of the bed, so the first night after driving a whole day we had the suprise to have no matress.... So we called them and they told us "buy a same matress or come back to our agency", we finaly had to drive back 150km to have the a matress, so we lost 2 days of our trip driving.... Then we realised that the campshower was out of order so we had to buy another one... we also realised that there were a big smell of gaz when we were using the gasmate until it got in fire, in fact there were a big gaz leak on it.... They finaly finished us when we came back with the car, the check-out was ok "no problem" they said, and few weeks later they took 20 dollars on our credit cards saying the fuel were not full whereas we fullfilled it completly..... Honestly we do not recomend Budgy campers, we took them because they were the cheapest, but at the end with their inefficiency and dishonesty we lost much more money..... you will find many others advices like this one on internet....
We had a bad experience with budgy as many other people.. we have made the choice of the cheapest but in fact at the end, it costed us much more than the average....
We rented a van, first they have forgoten some important élément of the bed and we realised it the first night after driving 200km away from budgy christchurch shop.. So we called them, they told us we had to come back...(we lost 2 days of a trip because of this bed problem, ans they refuses to refund us) then we realised that there were a big leak on the gasemate when it went in fire... finaly when we gave back the car with full fuel, they told us everything was ok and 3 weeks later sent us a mail to say we had to pay 20$ dollars for fuel..
Just avoid budgy campers if you have a small budgy!
We do not recomend them!
Hired van 17 days from auckland took 3 hrs to do paper work and show us van in the end we worked out ourselves,they told us we need to bring the campervan back at least swepted but we didnt have any cleaning equipment .There was a stench smell coming from the sink i had to tip hot water down the sink but it still didnt do anything we ended up hiring a plumber who eventually got it unblocked. the drain obviously hadnt been checked before we got it the front drivers seat kept moving when i was driving we had no hot water from day one even at camping ground,slates on bed were taped together,No radio,they claim to be cheaper but their price is not much better than others they really need to look at the maintenance side on the motorhomes as our family hired 5 motorhomes and 4 of them had issues