Tap Water Safety in New Zealand

Can you drink the tap water in New Zealand?

In general, yes.

The US Center for Disease Control’s travel advisory confirms the safety of the tap water in New Zealand (source). However, it would be best if you take special precautions toward the unregulated water sources in some areas.

Like all countries though, water accessibility, sanitation, and treatment vary widely from location to location, so we encourage looking for specific city information.

What do people in New Zealand think about the tap water?

Tap water throughout New Zealand is generally safe to drink, and public taps with nondrinkable water tend to be labelled as such. However, water quality has faced pollution challenges in some places. Very occasionally, a warning may be issued that tap water must be boiled – your accommodation should inform you if this happens.

Wikitravel

Bottled water, both flavoured and unflavoured, is available in most shops. Not that there is anything wrong with the tap water, it is just that some town supplies are drawn from river water and chlorinated. Most town supplies are fluoridated. If you do not want to pour your money down the drain, fill your own water bottle from the tap, unless you find it is too heavily chlorinated for your taste.
Tap water in New Zealand is regarded as some of the cleanest in the world; it is safe to drink from in all cities, most come from artesian wells or freshwater reservoirs - however, some are from rivers which can be chlorinated to be made safe but do not taste very nice. Some of the water in Auckland comes from the Waikato river, a long river that has its source in Lake Taupo in the centre of the North Island. But by the time it reaches Auckland, it has been treated so that the quality is no worse than that of the Thames in London or the Hudson in New York. Auckland water is also drawn from run-off reservoirs in the Waitakere and Hunua Ranges. Tap water in places such as Christchurch and Hastings is not chlorinated at all as it is drawn from the pure artesian aquifers of the Canterbury and Heretaunga plains.
New Zealand has high and equitable standards of professional health care comparable with Sweden or Australia. Tap water is drinkable but precautions should be taken against Giardia when tramping.

The most commonly searched cities in New Zealand are:

For a full list of cities in New Zealand, scroll to the bottom of this post or click here.

World Health Organization New Zealand Water Summary

The World Health Organization estimates that 99 percent of New Zealand have access to drinkable tap water.

In 2000, 78% of the population had access to drinkable, tap water on site, and 99% within an accessible distance, including both rural and urban areas.

World Health Organization's 2017 New Zealand Water Data

The World Health Organization data on water quality and availability throughout New Zealand includes the national average, averages for urban population centers, and averages for rural areas.

DataDescription
Safely ManagedA location that safe, drinkable water that is free of biological or chemical contaminants available on premise.
At Least BasicSafe drinkable water is available within 30 minutes from the location
LimitedIt would take more than 30 minutes from the location to access safe, drinkable water.
YearPopulation in 1000sSafely managedAt Least BasicLimited
National
2000385978%99%1%
2017470699%99%1%
Rural
2000540-99%1%
2017659-99%1%
Urban
20003319-99%1%
20174047-99%1%

What Do People In New Zealand Think About The Tap Water?

Travelers and residents of New Zealand have rated the water quality and pollution as follows, according to subjective survey data.

A score of 100% is considered very high, and a score of 0% is very low. Please be cautious that "moderate to very high" water pollution is bad and the higher the rate of water quality the better.

DescriptionScoreRating
Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility16%Low
Water Pollution35%Moderate
Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility84%High
Water Quality65%High

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View our tap water report on all cities in New Zealand