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Road Rules and Signs

Please pay attention to New Zealand road signage as it may save your life!

Latest annual road deaths for every 100,000 of population show that New Zealand's roads are getting safer:

UK: 6 per 100,000
Australia: 9
NZ: 10
Canada: 10
Spain: 15
United States: 15

Not so many years ago, New Zealand had 13. The major reason now for more deaths in NZ compared to UK is that there are very few multi-lane highways in NZ.

Road Signs etc

Observe these important rules while driving and enjoy a safe journey...

Keep Left

Drive on the left side of the road.

Speed Limit

Maximum open road speed is 100km/h
Limited speed zone - 50km/h in adverse conditions
otherwise 100km/h
Maximum Speed limit for urban areas is 50km/h

Give Way "Yield"

Slow down, be ready to stop and give way “yield” to all traffic


Stop completely then give way “yield” to all traffic

One Lane Bridges

Give way - “yield”


On a motorway you must not:
• walk or cycle
• stop your vehicle
• make a ‘u’ turn
Keep to the left hand lane unless passing and indicate at least 3 seconds before changing lanes.

Traffic Signals

You must stop.
Stop unless you are so close to the lights that you cannot stop safely
Go but give way “yield” when turning.
You may NOT turn right. You may go straight or turn left if it is safe.
You may turn left. All other traffic must stop.

Permanent Hazard Signs

Wind gusts Round Abouts
Curve Seal Ends
Railway crossing Road Narrows
Farm Animals Winding Road
School Bus Sudden Dip

Temporary Hazard Signs

Slips Roadworks
Slippery Surface Lane Closed
Hazards Detour

Pedestrian Crossings

Stop for people crossing.


No Parking on a yellow line or within 6 metres of an intersection.
Red on white signs apply at all times.

No Stopping.
No Parking.


Reviews / Comments for Road Rules and Signs

Rating Averages


The give way in New Zealand is simple, if an oncoming car would hit you in the driver's door, you give way. If it is you going to hit them, they give way. This is at any uncontrolled intersection.

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