Driving in Winter

Winter Driving Tips

  • Accelerate smoothly and brake gently.
  • Plan extra travel time and slow down.
  • Four wheel drive vehicles are no safer than other vehicles, especially downhill.
  • Make sure all car windows are free of snow and ice - you can receive an instant fine if you don't.
  • Check the road conditions before you leave.
  • Carry chains, know how to fit them and check they fit - you can be fined for ignoring chain fitting signs.
  • Shaded areas may be icy all day.
  • Ice or a thaw freeze can occur at any time of the day.
  • Bridges require extra care.
  • Double your following distance.
  • Never overtake a grit truck when it is applying grit.
  • The Crown Range is an alpine pass and chains must be carried.

Stay Informed

► Road Conditions

► Sign-up for Winter Road Reports

► QLDC Community Text Alerts


Queenstown Radio Stations

Q92-More FM 92.0
Classic Hits 90.4

Wanaka Radio Stations
Radio Wanaka 92.2
Q92-More FM 99.4
Classic Hits 96.2

Highway conditions (SH6, SH6A, SH8A)

Visit the NZTA website for State Highway conditions or telephone 0800 44 44 49.

Traffic Cameras

The New Zealand Transport Authority operate a network of traffic cameras along Queenstown's busiest routes. 

Using this information, drivers can make travel arrangements to avoid congestion, either by delaying their departure, or taking an alternate route. In addition to this, drivers are encouraged to allow extra time for their trip, and if they can, to travel outside the morning and late afternoon traffic peaks.

View the live cameras here

Roads in Winter

In the event of a big dump of snow, certain procedures have been put in place around the clearing of roads. First to be cleared are the main transport links. 

Check out the priority roads here.

Please note: The state highway, which includes Frankton Road, Stanley Street and Shotover Street, is administered by the NZTA hence does not feature on the maps.

First time driving in New Zealand?

See the NZTA website to learn what's different about driving in New Zealand.