Weather to put a damper on school holiday traffic

Heavy rain is expected to hamper people's hopes of a swift escape for the school holidays. 

A lingering front over much of the North Island is expected to bring more heavy rain, and snow in parts. That could lead to congestion, surface flooding and dangerous, snowy roads packed with cars full of kids.

Down south, heavy winds are expected in some coastal areas on Sunday.

AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen told Newshub every parent knows a grumpy child is a major distraction.

"You want to make sure that before you're heading away you know how long you're going to be in the car - and that you've got some activities, you've got some snacks."

He's also warning people it's a rough time of year to be driving and they should plan ahead.

"Conditions aren't going to be great and the traffic's going to be heavy. People need to plan for that, be ready and stay relaxed."

People should check the tyre tread before taking off on a long trip and ensure a safe following distance, Thomsen said.

Also on days when it's likely to be a little darker make sure people can see you.

"During the day at this time of year light conditions can be pretty low. Use your headlights - not for you to see, that actually makes it easier for other vehicles to see you."