Insurance Terms and Conditions

Please read our Insurance Terms and Conditions carefully!


Chilli Rental vehicles are fully insured for visitors to New Zealand. However, due to the kind of roads and driving conditions in NZ, insurance excesses are very high. This results in a pre-approved security deposit before your departure. Chilli Rentals accepts the security deposit to be paid into one of the Chilli Rentals bank accounts up front which will save you transaction fees. The payable amount in case of an accident can be minimized if the person renting pays a daily insurance damage waiver fee.

Rates are as follows:

$3000 NZD security deposit if NO waiver fee is paid – this is immediately withdrawn upon any incident, accident or damage to pay for necessary repairs. Our New Zealand insurer does not cover damages less than $3000 which means Chilli Rentals has to pay for any of those repairs. But don’t worry – if the damage on your vehicle is more than $3000 we will not charge you anything else but the security deposit.(more details in our Terms and Conditions)

$2000 NZD security deposit if $20 NZD per day are paid for the term of the rental, payable before departure

ZERO security deposit if $25 NZD per day are paid for the term of the rental, payable before departure

Accidents of any kind can happen and many drivers in New Zealand do not have insurance as it is not compulsory by law. We therefore strongly recommend our customers are taking the full $25 NZD per day waiver. That way we can keep insurance costs low rather than having to pass them on to our customers. The insurance waiver also covers damage to windscreen and tyres which normally is not covered by the insurance.

If you have any further questions about our Insurance Terms and Conditions please don’t hesitate to contact us. After all we are here to help!

We also recommend you get a private third party insurance before renting or buying a vehicle. This insurance will cover willful damage to the car as well as any damage caused by improper use.

Please ensure that you have a comprehensive travel and health insurance before entering New Zealand. This will help you avoid unnecessary costs and stress in case of injuries/accidents/illness, theft and other unforeseen circumstances. Our insurance does NOT cover damage or loss of valuables after theft!

Major issues

If you notice any problems with the vehicle, we need you to inform us straight away so we can decide as soon as possible how to deal with it – before it’s too late. Unfortunately we’ve had cases where backpackers failed to notify us about minor defects that over time turned into major issues including total loss of the vehicle. If the vehicle suffers major damage due to your own carelessness you will be responsible for any costs that occur. In order to prevent that from happening please remember to call us as soon as you think something is wrong with the vehicle.

Also, please be aware that the majority of vehicles in New Zealand is fitted with an automatic transmission. If you’ve never driven an automatic we strongly recommend you get some practice before thinking about hiring or buying a vehicle in New Zealand. This will help you familiarize yourself with this kind of transmission and reduce your risk of causing an accident.

In order to prevent you from unnecessary costs we also recommend that you increase your mechanical vehicle knowledge prior to your trip and get someone to explain to you the basics regarding motor vehicles and how they work. Unfortunately we repeatedly come across backpackers that forget to regularly check oil and water levels and tyre pressure and top up if necessary. Also keep in mind to check temperature and other gauges for early warning signs! By doing so you lower the risk of mechanical problems or failure immensely! Your vehicle will last a lot longer on New Zealand roads and you will be able to invest your money into the joys of travelling rather than car repairs.

Our insurance does NOT cover
Our insurance does NOT cover:

  • driving on Ninety Mile Beach Road (Northland), Skippers Road (Queenstown), Ball Hut Road (Mt. Cook), Bluff Road (zwischen Kuaotunu und Matarangi) and north of Colville Township (Coromandel Peninsula) or any beach or rough terrain and any other road that is deemed unsuitable from time to time by local or territorial authorities and posted as such by them – for instance after heavy rain
  • damage caused by submersion whether salt or fresh water and however caused
  • tire and windscreen damage however caused (covert within the 25NZD insurance waiver per day)
  • damage caused while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • rescue costs associated with being bogged down or stranded
  • mechanical damage caused by failure to check engine oil, water levels and other vital levels indicated by visible or audible warnings
  • willful damage by you or other parties
  • damage caused by improper use of the vehicle (for instance driving while the brake is still engaged) or grossly negligent behaviour while driving (for instance speeding)
  • loss of valuables
  • loss of documents (passport)
  • loss of car keys
  • damage caused by unregistered drivers without a valid driver licence
  • damage caused by using the wrong fuel type (petrol/diesel) or by contaminating the fuel with biofuel or water
  • damage or loss to the vehicle interior and equipment provided such as linen, cooking utensils, camping gear and similar

PLEASE NOTE: Although you are legally allowed to drive on most beaches and waterways in New Zealand, no vehicle rented or sold by Chilli Rentals should be taken near or into the water. Doing so can cause major damage to the vehicle or even cause breakdowns which are NOT covered by our comprehensive insurance package. Any damage or loss of the vehicle caused by you driving it on a beach or waterway will have to be dealt with at your own expense.

IMPORTANT: A vehicle turnover caused by the vehicle rolling, tipping or toppling over is being handled as careless driving by us and our insurance company! Any damage caused to the side or roof of the vehicle will be charged with a $7500 excess as well as all related costs. Tipping over due to strong wind is excluded from this clause.

Please ensure that you have a comprehensive travel and health insurance before entering New Zealand. This will help avoiding unnecessary costs and stress in case of injuries/accidents/illness, theft and other unforeseen circumstances.

Remember to NOT leave any valuables in the car when you’re out and about! Remember to remove items such as the tourism radio and GPS out of sight when parking your vehicle. If your car gets broken into because you have left any valuable items in plain sight it is your responsibility to replace them and pay for any related damage as this is not covered by our insurance. 

PLEASE NOTE: With any vehicle that has the tent installed on top of the car roof there is a risk of falling. Never leave toddlers and children unattended while inside the tent. Accidents at this height might also occur while under the influence of alcohol. Chilli Rentals is not liable for such injuries.