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taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

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Auckland Region...
posts: 3
taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

we are going to Rarotonga for son's wedding, wondering what goods we can take with us such as milk, cheese diet coke etc

47 replies to this topic
Christchurch, New...
posts: 19
reviews: 13
21. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

Hi guys,

Great help from those in the know, thanks so much. We're going over March 2012 and wish to take lots of food also.

Those who took milk....did you take the long life milk in cardboard boxes, or did you just freeze plastic bottles of milk. Did it travel ok? My family won't drink powdered milk made up, but I will, so maybe this will cut down on weight.

Also, does anyone know the liquor restrictions? Is it 2 bottles duty free each way, each adult?

Thanks so much

Christchurch, New...
posts: 159
reviews: 49
22. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga


Unless you really have to have fresh milk, the UHT boxes here are about $2.50 a litre so its not worth bringing it over, fresh milk is around $15 for 2 litres.

Liquor restrictions into Raro are 2 litres per person, you can usually bring in 3 x 750ml wine as one allowance or 2 x 1 litres of spirits. Going into NZ it is 3 bottles. The duty free shops here at Raro airport on entry are pretty reasonable.

Destination Expert
for Norfolk Island
posts: 4,186
reviews: 160
23. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

rayjenk is quite right about UHT milk. It's cheap, readily available and comes in full cream and low fat varieties. I find it perfectly acceptable and you'll find it's the norm in all pacific islands, including Norfolk Island.

If you've ever tried to freeze fresh milk at home you'll probably have found it separates on defrosting.

Christchurch, New...
posts: 19
reviews: 13
24. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

Fantastic, thank you for your replies.

We are quite happy drinking the UHT milk so we'll buy that once there i think.

$15 for 2L is CRAZY expensive, but I can understand why.

It's amazing, the things i wouldn't have even thought about.


Nelson, New Zealand
posts: 194
reviews: 23
25. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

I think it depends on how long you are going for, we took a heap of food with us and hardly touched a thing but we were only there for 5 nights. We went to the supermarket and bought everything we needed yes we paid a little bit more but not horrendously so.

Auckland Region...
posts: 12
reviews: 32
26. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

I go to Raro every year. You can get almost everything in Raro now, it is NOT a 3rd world country. You don't need to lug over heavy bottled water, it is fine boiled. Dairy & meat is a a little more expensive but not much more than many Auckland supermarkets prices. Infact we always buy UHT milk which is fine. There are two big supermarkets (Foodland and CITC) as well as plenty of superettes and stalls dotted around the island, some 24hr. Unless you plan on eating steak every night, it is better to buy there and also gives back to the economy. Locals can survive on their meager wages, and many of my Raro friends & family find it insulting that Kiwis bring in food that can be readily found in Raro. They think "How can they afford to go on holiday if they have to bring in all their food?". Besides all the European item you can buy ( yes, including chips and snacks!), there is so much amazing fresh, reasonably priced produce to buy - fruit, veges, fish and an array of delicious fresh, local baking - pastries, puddings, breads, cakes, you name it! We always buy up at the Punanga Markets on Saturday mornings - beautiful lettuces and herbs, fresh bread. On Saturday morning if the fishing has been good, the catch is displayed for sale on the same day. You can also buy fresh fish daily from Ocean Fresh Fish on the back road, past the airport on the way out of Avarua. Tuna, Mahi Mahi, Marlin, Wahoo, Red Snapper and more. If you love Fast Food - it is a mecca! You can love on burgers and pizza. No one in Raro starves!

posts: 8,010
reviews: 24
27. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

Susie: Great post! What I have been trying to get across to the New Zealanders for a long time. And it sure does seem that whenever someone wants to bring in their own food........they are from New Zealand. Please; support the local economy. Thanks. Chuck...

Auckland Region...
posts: 12
reviews: 32
28. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

Thanks! It gets a bit tiresome. Cheers Chuck. :-)

29. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

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Hamilton, New...
posts: 2
reviews: 3
30. Re: taking food from New Zealand to Rarotonga

Great info thanks, am going to relax now and just buy our food there.

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