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Play Safe in New Zealand - Your Safety
New Zealand is one of the safest travel destinations in the world, with a relatively low crime rate, few endemic diseases and a first-class healthcare and accident compensation system. However, we recommend you observe the same precautions with your personal safety and your possessions as you would in any other country or at home.
• Keep copies of your important documents, eg passport and credit cards, and keep them separate from the originals. 
• Keep a record of the description and serial number of valuable items, eg digital cameras. 
• Dial 111 in emergencies. 
New Zealand Picture
Keeping Yourself Safe
Crime rates in New Zealand are lower than many other countries, but you can help keep yourself and others safe by following these simple tips:
• If possible, go places with someone you know and trust. 
• Be aware of your surroundings when walking and sightseeing. 
• Late at night, stay in places that are well lit and with other people. Don’t take short cuts through parks or alleyways. Take a taxi or get a ride with someone you know. 
• Drugs and more than moderate amounts of alcohol can lower your awareness and increase your vulnerability. 
• In a bar, avoid accepting drinks from strangers and don’t leave your drink unattended. 
• If using an ATM withdraw small amounts - preferably during the day - and shield your pin. 
• Don’t carry large amounts of cash or expensive jewellery. 
• Keep valuable items close to your body. 
• The police recommend you don’t accept rides from people you don’t know. 
• While still relatively safe in New Zealand, we recommend you don’t hitchhike. For more tips on driving in New Zealand see Road Rules and Safety. 
• Lock your accommodation (including campervans) and secure windows at night. 
• Carry a mobile phone and don’t hesitate to dial New Zealand’s emergency phone number if you feel unsafe or threatened - dial 111. 
• Carry a basic first-aid kit for use in emergencies.

Getting Help
The emergency telephone number in New Zealand is 111. It is a free phone call. If you have an emergency and need a quick response from the Police, the Fire Service, Ambulance or Search and Rescue, dial 111.
There are Police Stations in all main towns and cities in New Zealand and in many rural locations. Contact details can be found in local telephone books. Don’t hesitate to contact the police if you feel unsafe or threatened. And do report any theft and crime to the police immediately.
Keeping Safe Via Text Messaging
New Zealand's two main mobile phone providers offer a txt messaging service for visitors. 
You can send updates about your location and travel movements via txt to number 7233 [SAFE]. These details are kept on a central database which can be accessed by police if necessary. Each text message sent to 7233 will be acknowledged by an automated response, which advises you to call 111 and request police assistance if you are in danger. Police and the New Zealand tourism industry encourage you to use this service as another way of letting people know where you are and what you are doing while in our country. 

New Zealand Picture

Keeping Your Possessions Safe
Follow these commonsense precautions to help keep your possessions safe:
• Always lock your accommodation or vehicle and keep windows secure when unattended, and at night. 
• Hand your room key to reception rather than carrying it with you. 
• Never leave valuables in parked vehicles. 
• Don’t leave maps, luggage or visitor brochures visible in your vehicle. 
• Store valuables securely, ideally in a safe at your accommodation. 
• Try and park campervans in designated areas. 
• Never leave bags, backpacks, wallets or cameras unattended in any public place, especially airports, ferry terminals or railway stations. 
If any of your possessions are stolen or valuable items misplaced, advise local police as soon as possible
Accidents and Health Insurance
With a little care and common sense, your visit to New Zealand should be accident-free. If you are injured here, you may need the help of the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) - New Zealand's accident compensation scheme.
In New Zealand, you cannot sue anyone for compensatory damages if you are injured. Instead ACC helps pay for your care - and that means paying towards the cost of your treatment and helping in your recovery while you remain in New Zealand.
You still need to purchase your own travel and medical insurance because ACC does not cover everything. ACC only covers treatment and rehabilitation in New Zealand, and usually you must pay part of the cost yourself. If you have a serious injury, with long-term effects, you may also be eligible to be assessed for lump-sum compensation once the injury is stable. The ACC does not pay any additional costs resulting from an accident, for example delayed or curtailed travel costs, travel home, treatment at home and loss of income in your home country.
We strongly advise you to arrange your own health insurance. New Zealand's public and private medical/hospital facilities provide a high standard of treatment and service but it is important to note these services are not free to visitors, except as a result of an accident.
Visitors bringing in a quantity of medication are advised to carry a doctor's certificate to avoid possible problems with New Zealand Customs. Doctor's prescriptions are needed to obtain certain drugs in New Zealand.
No vaccinations are required to enter New Zealand.

New Zealand Safety in the water
Safety in the water
Given New Zealand's subtropical climate, it is no surprise that New Zealanders like to spend so much of their leisure time in the water. However water can conceal hazards. Beaches with potential hazards are often patrolled by lifeguards, who put up yellow and red flags - Water Safety New Zealand recommend that between these flags is the safest place to swim on these beaches.
Other advice includes having an adult watching over children at all times, to listen to advice from life guards, never swim or surf alone, learning to recognise rip currents, always using safe equipment, never swimming or surfing when tired or cold, considering other surf users and staying out of the water if in doubt.
Safety Precautions
Although there are no snakes or dangerous wild animals in New Zealand, you should be aware of the following:
• Variable Weather - Weather conditions in New Zealand alpine areas can change rapidly. Be prepared for cold wet weather if you plan to walk in our National Parks, whatever the time of year.
• Sandflies - In wetter areas, particularly in Fiordland, sandflies can be pests, but are effectively controlled by use of an insect repellent.
• Giardia - Giardia is a water-borne parasite that causes diarrhoea. To avoid contracting it, it is best not to drink water from lakes, ponds or rivers without first boiling, chemically treating or filtering it.
Sunburn - New Zealand's clear, unpolluted atmosphere and relatively low latitudes produce sunlight stronger than much of Europe or North America, so be prepared to wear hats and sun block if you plan to be out in the sun for more than 15-20 minutes.

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