I am rating Contiki a four as it is a great way to travel on your own and see a lot of things in a short amount of time in a safe environment. This was my first big trip traveling alone, I wanted to just enjoy the trip, not have to think about where I was going next, how I was going to get there and where I was going to stay. The guide and driver were very knowledgeable as they were from New Zealand. The trip manager was organized, made sure everyone got on there add-on activities and was good at taking us out to local spots in the evening for good entertainment. The driver was very approachable, friendly and helpful at suggesting different places to see or things to do on your free time.
If I could change anything about Contiki it would be to have more involvement with group activities at minimal- no cost. I found that everything was very go, go, go and everything involved paying for it. I knew there were add on extras, but did not realize how busy it was and the only way to experience things. If you did not have an add-on extra than you basically had to find stuff to do on your own. There were 50ish people in my group, (also had no idea groups were that large) I did not even get to know or interact with half of them because of how busy it was.
Id suggest coupons for local places for discounts on food would be beneficial as cost of food was expensive and added up quickly. Most of time I went to grocery stores to grab food to take on the trip. Coming from Canada, a trip costing 3200 + Flight + extras + food all adds up quickly. The trip ended up costing me roughly another 4g on top of just the Contiki price.
Recommendations for other travelers: Make sure to have extra money for free time add-ons- amazing views, scenery for days, take lots of pictures / videos but don't forget to live in the moment because it goes by quickly.
YOLO #NO REGRETS, It was an AMAZING experience, I will definitely will be returning to NZ one day. I ABSOLUTE LOVED IT!