NZTA warns Kiwis to prepare for heavy four-day Waitangi congestion

NZTA says expect traffic delays this Waitangi Day weekend.
NZTA says expect traffic delays this Waitangi Day weekend. Photo credit: Getty

People heading out of our main cities for the long weekend are warned to expect delays and avoid busy travel times.

If you've only just finished packing up the chilly bin, get a move on because you're about to hit the worst of it.

With Waitangi Day falling on a Thursday this year, the NZ Transport Agency says most people will want to make a long weekend out of it.

"We expect the state highways north and south of Auckland to be busy, so it's worth planning ahead to try to avoid congestion and delays," says Transport Agency's Auckland operations manager, Rua Pani.

Motorists should expect delays starting as early as Wednesday evening and should be prepared for congestion on Thursday and Friday throughout the day too.

Northbound from Auckland, traffic delays are expected until 7pm and won't quieten down until after 8pm on Wednesday night.

The NZTA wants people to also bear in mind the motorway's closure overnight north and south of the city.

Down south towards Wellington, the Kapiti Coast will also experience heavy traffic delays on Wednesday evening until 8pm, both north and south. The heavest times are expected for Friday night.

If you're travelling south of Christchurch on Wednesday evening, be prepared for congestion too.

View the Transport Agency's Waitangi Day weekend interactive map for more travel advice and predicted traffic flow.