Press Release

For immediate release

Traffic offences have cost Kiwis more than $272 million

        • Over one million speeding fines issued at a cost of $241 million
        • Kiwis fined over 90,000 times for not wearing a seat belt
        • Surprising things that can void your car insurance claim

3 August, 2020, New Zealand – Kiwi drivers are racking up millions of dollars in traffic fines each year according to Finder, a car insurance comparison site recently launched in New Zealand.

A Finder analysis of New Zealand Police data shows that Kiwi drivers committed more than 1.6 million traffic offences between March 2019 to March 2020, at a combined cost of $272 million (equivalent to approximately $74 per person).

The analysis revealed that speeding is the number one traffic offence in New Zealand, with over a million drivers caught out by a mobile speed camera (764,532), a static speed camera (34,988) or police officer (536,194).

Overall, the collective cost of these speeding offences totalled an eye-watering $241,738,450 during this period.

The area with the highest number of speeding offences is Canterbury Metro, with over 102,000 tickets issued from officers and mobile speed cameras from March 2019 to March 2020.

The area with the least number of fines is Auckland East, with just 6,198 tickets issued from March 2019 to March 2020.

Kevin McHugh, Finder’s publisher in New Zealand, said that traffic offences can hurt the hip pocket in more ways than one.

“From speeding to using a mobile behind the wheel, many drivers will receive a traffic fine over the course of their life.

“Not only can dangerous driving put the life of yourself and others at risk, the associated fines can end up costing hundreds or thousands of dollars.

“A history of traffic infringements can also jack up the cost of your car insurance premium, as insurers will see you as a potential risk.

“You also risk having your cover voided if you lie about previous traffic convictions on your application,” he said.

The Finder analysis also revealed that Kiwis were fined more than 90,000 times for not wearing a seat belt during March 2019–20, at a national cost of $12.8 million.

This was followed by failing to stop at a red light, with 42,000 fines issued at a combined cost of $8.6 million.

McHugh said that it’s important drivers take out adequate cover.

“Even if you’ve never had a traffic infringement yourself, another driver may end up being the cause of an accident, and this can potentially leave you out of pocket.

Car insurance provides the highest level of protection. It’s designed to cover any and all damage to your car.

“If you damage someone else’s car or property in an accident, it covers that too. At the end of the day, you’re better off being safe than sorry,” he said.

New Zealand driving offences between March 2019 – March 2020

OffenceNumber of fines issuedTotal cost
Failing to stop at a red light42,790$8,658,150
Not wearing a seatbelt90,894$12,856,950
Driving under the influence of alcohol51,076$3,072,400
Using a mobile phone while driving78,570$5,999,280
Speeding (mobile speed camera)764,532$53,615,880
Speeding (static speed camera)34,988$115,684,110
Speeding (officer issued fine)563,194$72,438,460
Total:1,626,044$272,325,230

Source: NZ Police, Finder

Surprising that can void your car insurance claim:


Inappropriate footwear. Depending on your insurer, your claim may be rejected if you were wearing shoes such as platforms, high heels or jandals at the time of the incident.

Your car was unlocked. If you leave the keys in your vehicle and it gets stolen, this could be seen as reckless by your insurer, and your claim may be denied.

Your pet is unsecured. Do you let your pet roam free in the car while driving? If it distracts you and you get in an accident, your insurer may reject your claim on this basis.

Your vehicle is unroadworthy. If your tyres don’t have enough tread or one of your brake lights is broken, your vehicle may be deemed unsafe or unroadworthy. If your car wouldn’t pass warrant, your insurer can reject your claim.

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Disclaimer

The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on finder.com's review pages for the current correct values.

About Finder

Finder is a global comparison site, now available in New Zealand. Each month, 90,000 consumers turn to Finder to save money and time, and to make important life choices. In New Zealand we compare credit cards, mortgages, travel insurance, shopping deals and more.

Our free service is 100% independently-owned by three Australians: Fred Schebesta, Frank Restuccia and Jeremy Cabral. Since launching in 2006, Finder has continued to expand and launch around the globe, with offices in Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Poland and the Philippines. For further information visit https://www.finder.com/nz.

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