Christchurch is considered a very easy place to get around with a number of different transportation options including a public bus network, hiring a car, riding a bike, and other rideshare options. There are two major bus networks in Christchurch with various lines taking you to different parts of the city centre and outer suburbs. You can also make your way around the city on foot or by bike as the terrain is quite flat and easy to navigate.
Renting a car in Christchurch
If you're catching a flight into Christchurch Airport then renting a car is a fairly quick and easy process with several car rental companies to choose from including Hertz, Sixt, Budget, and Avis. These car rental companies are located within the international arrivals area of Christchurch airport. While the cost of hiring a car largely depends on what kind of car you need, how long you need it for, and what season you're travelling in, the average cost is about $30-$40 per day. This can be upwards of $200 a day if you want a fancier or newer model.
There are also numerous car rental companies within the city of Christchurch itself if you want to take a few day trips to different regions.
Public transport in Christchurch
Public transport in Christchurch largely consists of two major bus networks that run throughout the city and its surrounding regions. While there is a ferry system and a city tram, the bus network is the form of transportation that is the most popular thanks to its efficiency and reliability. There are several bus lines that will take you to all the major destinations in the city, as well as to popular suburbs just outside of the city.
You will need either a metro card or cash to hop on and off buses in Christchurch.
How to get a metro card in Christchurch
The metro card enables you to pay for your bus fares easily and without hassle, also giving you 25% off the fare price. The city and surrounding regions of Christchurch are divided into several zones so the fare of your trip depends on which zones you're travelling through and how long your bus ride is. However, purchasing a metro card might only be worth it if you're spending an extended period of time in Christchurch as they cost NZ$10, and a further NZ$10 needs to be put on the card before you can start catching bus rides.
You can purchase a metro card by applying online or visiting a participating agency with a form of identification. These agencies are scattered throughout the city so obtaining a metro card is convenient and quick.
Walking or cycling around Christchurch
Both walking and cycling around Christchurch are popular options as a way to travel through the city as it's primarily flat. With cycle lanes spread throughout the city, cycling remains one of the easiest and most efficient ways to take in as much of Christchurch as you can. There are several companies you can hire a bike from including City Cycle Hire, located in the heart of Christchurch.
Walking is also a very popular form of transportation as most attractions are within walking distance of each other, giving you a chance to see more of Christchurch than you would in a bus or a car.