Christmas/New Year holidays – Waka Kotahi media contacts (and other useful information)


The holidays are almost here, but we know that many of our friends in the newsgathering business will be at work while the rest of us are at the bach or the beach, so the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency media team will be on call to help during the 2020/21 Christmas/New Year break.

Over the holiday period your Waka Kotahi media team contacts will be: 

December 24-27 – Andy Knackstedt –  - 0212 763 222
December 28-31 – Frances Adank – – 021 705 613
January 1-4 – Megan Heffield – – 021 317 688

Throughout the holiday period, the Ministry of Transport will update holiday road crash data on a daily basis. This information will updated here(external link) at 10am daily from December 25.  

Waka Kotahi has also crunched the numbers from previous holiday periods to produce our popular interactive holiday journeys map(external link).

The map uses data on travel patterns from previous years to show predicted traffic flows across popular journeys over the Christmas/New Year holiday period.

We also have other useful information to help people plan their journeys. The Waka Kotahi Journey Planner(external link) web page is a great tool to help people plan their trips with real time travel information, traffic cameras, and updates on delays, roadworks and road closures.

If the boss does give you some time off during the break, or if you’re hitting the road while on the job, please also keep yourself safe and follow our ‘top tips’ below for a safe holiday journey. 

You can also find good background information on safe holiday driving here(external link).

Wishing you a safe and joyous holiday on behalf of Waka Kotahi. 

Top tips for safe holiday journeys

Plan ahead.  Make sure your vehicle is safe to drive and has a current WoF. Check your tyre pressure, lights and indicators, windscreen and wipers before you head off, and plan ahead to avoid peak traffic where you can. Build in extra time for rest stops or sightseeing breaks along the way. Waka Kotahi has crunched the numbers from previous holiday periods to produce a great interactive map which can help you avoid some of the busiest times on our busiest roads.

Don’t drink and drive.  Your judgement and reaction times behind the wheel begin to deteriorate after even one drink. Keep it simple – if you’re going to drink, don’t drive. Also be aware of any medication you’re taking that might affect your driving.

Watch out for fatigue.  Long trips are tiring and fatigue can be deadly behind the wheel. Get a good night’s sleep beforehand, plan in advance where you’ll take breaks, and share the driving if you can.

Slow down and drive to the conditions.  This isn’t just about the speed limit, it’s also about the weather conditions, the road you’re on, the traffic, your vehicle and load, your following distance, and adjusting your driving for wet and windy conditions.

Keep your cool.  Holiday driving can be frustrating with busy roads, stifling heat, and restless kids in the car. So please, be courteous and patient on the roads.  Don’t get provoked by other drivers’ aggressive behaviour, and wait to overtake until you get to a passing lane or can see plenty of clear road ahead of you to do it safely.  And be sure to take enough games, books, or electronics to keep the kids occupied along the way.

Buckle up. Don’t let your family holiday be marred by tragedy simply because someone didn’t buckle up. If you’re the driver, you are legally responsible for making sure all passengers under the age of 15 are securely restrained with either a safety belt or child restraint.  Children must be properly restrained by an approved child restraint until their 7th birthday.

Check your car – safety basics

Driving in the holidays


Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey. Keep up to date with: