The NZTA have a couple of fantastic services for long weekends and public holidays called Holiday Hotspots. I use it every long weekend when I go away and barring people having accidents, I enjoy near normal driving speeds and even the bottlenecks are pretty good.
You can find it here and it is responsive so you can use it on your mobile as well as on a tablet or computer. Or you can go to www.nzta.govt.nz and click on Traffic and Travel. You’ll find loads of information there for this and future trips.
There are different ways to get to the same place, but if you click on a button or the name of the place, you can dig in for more information. If you hover over the table with your mouse, or tap and hold on your mobile device you will find even more info on the tables.
This is a brilliant service for Waitangi Weekend particularly because it is a complex weekend with celebrations in key places that makes some of the patterns different from normal holiday weekends, for example heading north a lot of people already left last night, possibly going to the far north for the Treaty celebrations. In other areas a lot are going away on the Friday or the Saturday.
Some of the travel patterns are different based on how far people typically travel. So I recommend if you don’t want to get stuck in traffic, visit this page and have a great drive like I usually do. My time is valuable and my car was not designed to stop-start. The parking lots we often experience are because people don’t plan ahead. It’s caused by people who just get in their cars and go. Imagine if everyone in Auckland tried to drive North and South at the same time?
I want to quickly tell you about another free product that I and many of my friends enjoy called OnTheMove in case you haven’t heard about it yet. It is a free email subscription service where you can register and identify what route you are traveling, what days and what times, and it will send you emails if anything occurs during the trip that might cause you a problem.
Imagine for example if you subscribed to start getting alerts an hour before you left and there was a serious crash between Auckland and Wellsford, you could avoid it by taking SH16 instead of SH1. You can even subscribe to regional alerts. It works on your mobile as well as your other devices. You can use it once, you can use it every day, you can have multiple routes, you can even monitor a region and plan visits to different locations based on any traffic events..
Use these simple tools this weekend for your road trip and you might just find that you have more time at your destination and less in the traffic. If you tell your friends and colleagues, it’s even better because the more people that plan their travel, the less congested it gets and of course they will get the same good experience you will enjoy. That’s because we cause the congestion when we get in our cars.
So how about giving these tools a try and letting me know what you think? Please note that any comments I make on my blogs are totally my own opinions and do not in any way represent my employer.