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How we used Bartercard Trade Dollars to fund our Rotorua holiday!

Anna Herd moved to New Zealand with her family four years ago and became a Bartercard member almost immediately.

Her husband had previously owned a franchise in the UK, so they were no strangers to the Bartercard network and how it worked. Here, Anna tells us how Bartercard benefited a long family weekend away in Rotorua.

A weekend away to Rotorua ended up being a useful exercise in comparing trade versus cash. Both my husband and I are Bartercard members for our respective businesses and wanted to take advantage of some CPG hotel vouchers I’d purchased earlier in the year. We decided to take our 10-year old son to Rotorua for a long weekend during the holidays and what a find it was.

Rotorua is brimming with members. I did a bit of planning before our trip as to some of the things we wanted to do and took advantage of an itinerary I’d seen shared via WeChat (a platform used by the Chinese community) and the member newsletter.

The weather wasn’t particularly kind that weekend, but we made the most of it. We started off with a drink at Ponsonby Rd Lounge Bar on Friday night, then followed it with dinner at Hennessy’s Irish Bar – great food and atmosphere.

On Saturday, we headed out on the Duck Tours – great fun and something we’d recommend – in fairness we didn’t get the full benefit of seeing the colour of the lakes due to it being overcast, but kids (big and small!), duck whistles and singing the theme song to Duck Tales were a great combination!

The Thai Restaurant was our dinner venue for Saturday night and we were very well looked after, not to mention the delicious food. I think the real highlight was the iced chocolate they served my son – it was more like a full-on dessert complete with Oreo cookies!

Sunday was definitely an indoor day due to the weather, so while we were sat having breakfast, our son had picked up a leaflet for Motion Entertainment, an indoor all-weather action-packed entertainment venue. When we looked on Bartercard Search, it quickly became apparent that this was where we were going to spend the day! Escape Rooms and Dark Ride were both on Bartercard and while I’d thoroughly recommend Escape Rooms, if you in any way get motion sickness, I’d perhaps avoid Dark Ride (or at least not do two rides consecutively)!

Close by was a lovely café – Sequoia Eatery – they do state on Bartercard Search that they’re only available on Bartercard Monday to Friday, but it pays to contact them. They were more than happy to accommodate a table of three for lunch, and it was great – busy too.

Later that afternoon, we’d booked to go to Hells Gate Thermal Reserve – another great find particularly on a rainy day! We had dinner at the SoBar on Sunday evening where we didn’t book but easily got a table and the pizzas were to die for!

Monday morning, it was back to the Irish Bar for a full breakfast – something my husband was very keen on! On our way home, we stopped at Taupo for lunch at Finn MacCuhals.

Overall, it was a great weekend and out of curiosity, when we got home, I did a bit of a tally as to what we’d spent. While the trip wasn’t a business expense, the whole weekend cost us just 20% in cash. We love using Bartercard for lifestyle purchases (as well as business expenses).

Bartercard Tourism has hundreds of resort and accommodation members at destinations worldwide that welcome visitors on Bartercard when there’s availability off-peak.

By spending Bartercard Trade Dollars instead of cash, hotels and resorts have saved millions of dollars on expenses from renovations to maintenance and equipment.


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Access Bartercard for 1 month complimentary* to see if it is the right fit for your business growth.

Access Bartercard for 1 month complimentary* to see if it is the right fit for your business growth.

*Membership fee may apply. Transaction fees will still apply for any trades that occur within the first month. Monthly membership: $49 a month + T$10 + T$10 DRF.