Re: We ‘Freedom Camping’
February 17 2020
I have been arguing your exact points all the time. Especially the point about the term ‘freedom campers’ as being a vilification label. I’ve met loads of NZ locals who bad mouth anyone who travels in NZ ‘freedom camping’, and it’s obvious the label has just turned sour. I’ve seen some people ruining it for everyone, but they are really few and far between. Mostly a few shitty regular tourists, shitty locals and shitty local 4WDers here and there leaving mess, or neglecting rules. BUT almost everyone I meet is really just trying to do their best. Unfortunately, these bad mouthing locals have shut down entire areas of public land, allowing councils to act and remove privilege from anyone seeking to use them for staying overnight. There IS a ratepayers issue, and i understand this argument, but these campers DO bring money to communities willing to support them. People will pay money when they feel they are being cared for and helped out - sometimes a donations box can go a long way, or services/stores to suit travellers. As for remote freedom camping - let people do it. I’ve barely come across toilet waste in NZ in general with extensive travelling. The biggest problem is garbage waste, but this is only a major problem because councils limit disposal (look at Queenstown for example!). Where do we get this money? It’s a problem, but shunning freedom campers and blaming them isn’t the answer and a ‘forward looking’ solution.