By Nahrain John @karryontravel22 Nov 2016Australian travellers shouldn’t let the 7.8 magnitude quake which hit New Zealand last week deter them from following through with holiday plans across the Tasman, according to DriveAway Holidays. Kiwis throughout the South Island were awoken a little after midnight last Monday when a powerful tremor hit, killing at least two people and causing damage to several buildings. Despite the severity of the shake and a number of strong aftershocks, tourism leaders in New Zealand have assured internationals that the country was well prepared for the natural disaster, so-much-so that all airports, key cities and main roads have been operating as usual since the initial quake. “Earthquakes are a part of life here and while unpredictable, we are well-equipped to deal with them.” Conventions and Incentives New Zealand However, when tragedy strikes, it’s not uncommon for travellers to become a little skittish about visiting affected destinations, which is why operators such as DriveAway Holidays have joined New Zealand’s tourism leaders in promoting the tourism readiness of the destination. In a statement, DriveAway Holidays’ Marketing Coordinator, Alicia Palmer, said aside from a few road closures that are still in place, New Zealand is very much open to those who want to hire a car and drive themselves around the country. She said travellers planning to drive through the south island “should not be deterred”, but rather kept up to date on certain driving routes. For example, Palmer highlighted that whilst collection and drop-off depots are open some road closures are still in place and drivers should allow for additional travel times. There’s also the closure of Route 70 from Waiau to Kaikoura, Leader Road in Waiau, and State Highway 1 between Cheviot and Ward. Palmer added that travellers should have travel contacts in place in case of an emergency, such as DriveAways’ assistance hotline, 1300 363 500. Meanwhile, Conventions and Incentives New Zealand confirmed a day after the earthquake that daily life in many parts of the country remain unaffected including New Zealand’s largest city Auckland. “Wellington city is busy with shows and events going ahead as planned.” Conventions and Incentives New Zealand “Roads and public transport are operating as normal.” Heard or seen anything new from New Zealand post-quake? Share it with us below. Other stories you may like Travel Agents spotted jumping for joy in Chile & walking the Great Wall Rotorua New Zealand smashes world record for largest haka ever These short and sweet escapes are so close you can almost touch them!