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Test the person not the vehicle

Responsible Campers Association Inc

Responsible Campers Association Inc

Standing up for the rights of campers in Aotearoa NZ


Set up in 2017, the Association (RCAi) surveyed local authorities about responsible freedom camping in their districts, and now focuses on practical management solutions to the many concerns that were identified.


Placing the onus on the mode of camping rather than the people, is misdirected in our view. Without even basic camper education, focusing on regulating a campers’ facilities fails to truly solve the problems.


RCAi worked on a simple accreditation programme, working with others such as the Department of Conservation and Fire Service staff. Responsible camping — whether using a pup tent or staying in a house-bus — is at the heart of our mission.


Our Responsible Camper Accreditation Programme offers a short online questionnaire testing knowledge on water and waste management, environmental fire safety and responsible practices that 'leave no trace'. If you pass you receive an education pack, sticker and ‘Toilet Equipped’ card which is current for two years. Accreditation is open to all campers, no matter how you travel, for a small fee.


Councils have been made aware of RCAi's simple solution and many districts unofficially recognise our accreditation.


RCAi is a strong advocate for positive solutions to any freedom camping issue, working to protect the right to freedom camp on public land in line with the current permissive Freedom Camping Act, and the Bill of Rights Act. We presented an opposing submission to the select committee that is currently considering Minister Nash’s proposed changes to freedom camping.


RCAi members can rely on their volunteer leaders to stand up for their rights as campers in Aotearoa New Zealand.


To learn more or gain accreditation go online here: accreditedcampernz.com.


Responsible camping — whether using a pup tent or staying in a house-bus — is at the heart of our mission.

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