How to do Queenstown on a budget

Blown all your cash on a road trip from Auckland? Or perhaps you’re setting up camp for the winter and need to  live thrifty for a while?

Here are my 9 top tips for being in this gorgeous town for longer than a few days:

Sir Cedric’s Southern Laughter hostel

1. Stay at Sir Cedric’s hostel

I’m not gonna lie, I only chose this place because the name made me chuckle. But with a hot tub, clean kitchens and free soup everyday, I’d struck lucky with this place. See full review here.

2. Head to ‘Fresh Choice’ supermarket for cheap eats:

The supermarkets in town are pretty pricey and quite small – head to ‘FreshChoice’ (about 10 mins walk from town centre) on Gorge Road for more discounted deals and choice.

3. Need furniture? Salvation Army’s Family Store has it all!

This charity shop is an emporium of old snowboards, bed steads, and those thick faux-fur coats your Auntie had when she went through her ‘I’m a dame’ phase. Help a worthy cause and furnish your home: The Salvation Army Family Store can be found on Gorge Road.

Cecil Peak at sunrise

4. Start the day at Queenstown Gardens

In New Zealand, the sunrises are an event unto themselves. Make all your mates at home hate you with photos of Cecil Peak, taken from Queenstown Gardens.

5. Or hike up Queenstown Hill for some more spectacular sights…

QT hill is a popular two hour trek, check out the council’s website for more tips and secret pathways to discover.

Roys Bay, Wanaka

6. Road trip to Wanaka

Got a car? Or your friends have? Convince them to go on a road trip to Wanaka and watch jaws drop at the scenery. See more photos here

7. Free yoga/ wellness classes at Lulu Lemon

If you can get up and in town by 8.30am on a Sunday morning, I applaud you! Lulu Lemon offer free classes in yoga and wellness, plus there’s a bunch of other healthy activities and events on their board in store. Pop in for more info!

Photo: Shotover Jet photography

8. Go to for discounts on local activities

This is a great site offering last minute deals to all those adventure-seekers out there who want to soar over glaciers or risk death in a speed boat.

9. Go T-Total for a week and see how much money you save

When drinks are $10-15 a pop, going out can get pricey. I’ve started an ‘Adventure Fund’, so everytime a G & T calls my name like a saucy harlot, I put $10 towards a bungee jump at the end of season instead.


Got any more great budget suggestions? My empty pockets are listening… get in touch on my Facebook page.





Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s