KiwiCamp: a new option for freedom campers

Freedom camping is a popular choice for many travellers in New Zealand, however whilst it may be free of charge, it’s not free of responsibility.

The basic rules are campers must not stay on private property and campervans must have their own toilets, fresh water and waste systems.

For those campers travelling in vehicles that aren't self contained, Marlborough resident Chris Wagner has come up with a novel solution. 

KiwiCamp offers a free space for campers to pull up, scan an app on their phone, and stay the night. His property in Blenheim can accommodate up to 30 vehicles.

It will still be free to park, but access to hot showers and washing machines will incur a small fee, by scanning the KiwiCamp app.

"The stay is free, but if you want to charge your phone, wash your dishes or have a shower, there's a charge", says Wagner. 

The campsite was accessed by swiping the KiwiCamp mobile app at a boom gate, which automatically shut off when the site reached capacity. 

It would cost campers 50 cents for 10 minutes of hot water for washing dishes, $2 for a shower and $4 to use the washing machine.

The Blenheim site would act as a prototype and Wagner hoped other KiwiCamp facilities could launch across the country.

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