Regardless of how you spell “bungee” in English, Kiwi’s spell it “bungy” and Kiwi A. J. Hackett is the one credited with the first publicly commercialized bungy. This is my experience bungy jumping from the very first commercialized bungy site, the Kawarau Bridge, and is in no way a paid endorsement. (Although feel free to pay me A. J.) www.bungy.co.nz
I bought a ticket just prior to Queen’s Birthday (June 4th 2018) for a rare 3-day weekend opportunity away from my desk job in Christchurch. The drive to Queenstown from Christchurch is a beautiful 6 hours of mixed terrain with the midway point at stunning Lake Takapo where you can grab some lunch and enjoy the magnificent view of Aoraki / Mount Cook. Upon arriving in Queenstown we drove straight to our Airbnb (Sign up using my referral link and get $40 USD off your first stay) for some R&R. Maybe I’m getting old but 6-hour drives take all my energy away. Besides, I needed to save my energy for my bungy jump the next day at noon.
We passed by the Kawarau Bridge, my bungy site, on the way into Queenstown and it got my nerves going imagining what my experience was going to be like. I elected to take the free bungy bus transportation option to the bungy site instead of self-driving to save on fuel, fuel is notoriously expensive here in NZ, at this time of writing it is $2.27NZD per Liter. The whole process was very streamlined and ridiculously simple to get registered to jump. Since I had already booked online my information was already in their computer system and I was weighed and given a tour number on my hands. The bus takes about 20 minutes and they remind you of that fact a few times during the journey. The bus driver had a funny rhetoric about the whole history of bungy and what to expect. It was at the point where he said, “you should be nervous” that I could feel my hands start to get sweaty with the realization that I was going to go on my first bungy jump in less than an hour.
We arrived at the bridge around 12:30 and were told the bus would pick us up at 2 so we had that time to do our jumps in no particular order. It was at this point that I visited the bar and ordered an Irish Coffee. A good choice I think because I jumped shortly after that. I watched a few people jump on the screen inside while staying warm and finally decided it was now or never… and I paid all that money already.
What a thrilling experience and one that I would recommend to anyone who’s healthy enough to do so. Having gone skydiving in the past I would compare it to that but not as extreme. Bungy is over quite quickly but that adrenaline buzz of jumping off a bridge or jumping out of a plane is like nothing else. If I were to go again I would do the taller, crazier, Nevis Bungy offered by the same company with an 8.5 second free-fall.
Total costs for reference (June 2018)
Drive from Christchurch: ~$100 NZD in fuel and wear-and-tear on car
Airbnb: 2 nights $82.50 NZD ($165 NZD total for 2 people for 2 nights) CLICK HERE TO USE MY REFERRAL LINK TO GIVE BOTH OF US ACCOUNT CREDIT
Bungy: $205 NZD (no promo code)
Photos and Video: $80 NZD after my bungy
Irish Coffee: $9 NZD
Drive home: ~$100 NZD in fuel and wear-and-tear on car
Total: $576.50 not including meals