10 Super Cheap Backpacker Food Deals in New Zealand


Where to Find Cheap Food Deals in New Zealand

Let’s be honest, although the cheapest way to feed yourself is to buy groceries and cook for yourself, sometimes you just want to treat yourself. When you’re on a big road trip around New Zealand and are always on the move, ain’t nobody got time to cook for yourself every single night! The great thing is cheap eats do exist in New Zealand if you know where to look.

So we asked you guys: what have been the cheapest food deals in New Zealand that you’ve found? And here are some of the top suggestions below! If you have discovered some more cheap eats around the country, be sure to let us know on our Facebook page.

1. Chef’s Palette $6.50 Noodle Salad

Looking for an affordable lunch which is also mostly healthy is a bit of a mission in New Zealand. However, Chef’s Palette in Wellington is here to serve! They have a popular deal of NZ$6.50 meat and noodles with salad. For more inspiration, see Cheap Eats in Wellington.

Location: 2 Woodward Street, Wellington

qoo monster on Wikipedia© qoo monster on Wikipedia

2. Domino’s or Pizza Hut $5 Pizzas

We know it’s not what a lot of people want to hear, but man the $5 pizza deal is a life-saver sometimes. Both Domino’s Pizza and Pizza Hut have their variations of NZ$4.99 pizzas, which can be a good option in most cities in New Zealand when you’re groceries are running low.

Location: Nationwide

pexels© pexels

3. Erik’s Fish and Chips $10 Fish/Hot Dog Meal

Have a Kiwi classic at Queenstown’s only fish and chips joint! This meal deal of one piece of hoki/hot dog with a scoop of chips, a soft drink and sauce are extremely affordable. We also recommend a cheeky purchase of the deep-fried kiwifruit. Get more great deals at Cheap Eats in Queenstown.

Location: 13 Earl Street, Queenstown©

4. Roseland’s $10 All-you-can-eat Beef Casserole

After a day of exploring the Waitomo caves or road-tripping to find all the 15 Free Things to Do in Waitomo, you’ll need a big feed. Roseland’s nightly Beef Casserole buffet is an affordable way to go! Have beef, gravy, vegetable, roast potatoes and rice and if you’re not stuffed after that, you can always get more for free. Plus, there’s free Wi-Fi.

Location: 579 Fullerton Road, Waitomo

Hoyabird8 at English Wikipedia© Hoyabird8 at English Wikipedia

5. No.1 Pancake’s $10 for 3 Pancakes

Pick up a Korean-style pancake for an affordable price at No.1 Pancake in Auckland. It’s extremely affordable for a quick snack with pancakes, sweet or savoury, for under NZ$5 or three pancakes for NZ$10. The street food vendor can be found on Lorne Street and Wellesley Street near the city library. More like that can be found in our Cheap Eats in Auckland.

Location: Corner of Lorne Street and Wellesley Street, Auckland©

6. Searle Lane’s $4 Pizzas

Every night from 8-9.30pm, grab yourself a reasonably-sized pizza from the Searle Lane bar in Queenstown for only NZ$4! That’s insane!

Location: 15 Church Street, Queenstown©

7. $5 Late Afternoon Sushi Deals

In New Zealand’s bigger cities and shopping malls, you are likely to find the common “late afternoon sushi deals” – usually around 3pm-5pm. Fresh sushi isn’t so fresh the next day, so that’s why many sushi joints around New Zealand sell the unsold six pieces of sushi for around NZ$5.

Location: Nationwide

Pixabay© Pixabay

8. Free Meals in Hostels

Some hostels around New Zealand throw in some food with your stay. Take Nomads Queenstown with nightly entree meals for free or only NZ$3 for an upgrade, Raglan Backpackers do a make-your-own pizza night in winter, or Tasman Bay Backpackers’ free chocolate pudding, for instance. That’s not to mention heaps of hostels around the country offering free breakfast.

Location: Nationwide

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9. Cabinet Food

You can always rely on New Zealand for affordable “cabinet food” in almost every town: great for those days when you have long drives and just need a quick place to stop and grab a bite to eat. You usually get good value for money on pies, wraps, sandwiches and sausage rolls.

Location: Nationwide©

10. Farmers’ Markets

Every major town in New Zealand has a farmer’s market, night market or some kind of market during the weekend. filled with food vendors and usually cheaper fruit and veggies than you would find in a supermarket. Plus, markets usually offer free tasters so you can try before you buy!

Location: Nationwide©


Laura S.

This article was reviewed and published by Laura, editor in chief and co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. Since arriving solo in New Zealand over 10 years ago and with a background in journalism, her mission has been to show the world how easy (and awesome) it is to travel New Zealand. She knows Aotearoa inside-out and loves sharing tips on how best to experience New Zealand’s must-dos and hidden gems. Laura is also editor of several other South Pacific travel guides and is the co-host of NZ Pocket Guide’s live New Zealand travel Q&As on YouTube.

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