Let’s have more class please

Daniel Hutchinson

From The Hutch

Well, we have had a weird week of news this week.

Let’s start off with our new tourism minister, Stuart Nash, who is planning to ban the hiring-out of non-self-contained vans.

I’m pretty sure non-self-contained vans are actually just called vans, but aside from the obvious impact on people who want to move a scotch chest from one place to the other, it seems like a good idea.

Nash is suggesting we turn our backs on boorish budget tourists who just want to travel the country and have fun. Picture young Kiwis tripping around Europe only with cool accents.

Anyone who has ever stopped in a highway rest area for a pee behind a bush will be familiar with just how many of these people have been stopping for a pee behind a bush – or something more serious.

Every scenic spot in the country is littered with budget people, their basic vans and makeshift clotheslines, displaying tie-died garments.


Anyway Stuart wants to squeeze more bucks out of a better class of people and the best way to do that is to ban the van. No van – no budget holiday.

Unless you have a tent, of course.

Tents are extremely mobile – they roll up into a tiny bundle and can be unfurled just about anywhere. They take up about the same amount of room as a van but you can take them off road – under a tree, on the beach.

So, they might want to look at that little loophole.

All class

Anyway, this all got me thinking about what a better class of tourist is.

Simply putting a monetary value on a person seems a little crass and not very Kiwi.

So, I believe we should allocate points, depending on how well these tourists perform in other areas. Let’s say, half of your class rating is based on your ability to rent a large campervan and the rest is based on other things.

For example – accents. Australians should have points deducted for sounding too much like Kiwis. People from France get extra points because everything sounds romantic. Even a simple query about where the nearest motorhome sewage waste station is will send shivers down the spine.

Other categories could include dress sense (boat shoes, crocs and Roman sandals are a sure sign of class and wealth), personal grooming and, of course attractiveness. We don’t want our country littered with unattractive people – it ruins the marketing images and will result in higher numbers of lower value people.

It’s not proper

The other big thing in the news this week is the prospect of a Crown Manager to the Tauranga City Council.

According to a recent study, our councillors have been treating their interactions like a giant family game of Monopoly.

I don’t know if this applies to everyone, but my family hasn’t played Monopoly since ‘The Incident’ of 2013. Emotions ran very high that day. There were tears, stomping of feet and tossing of tiny plastic houses. And the other losers were no better. It was like one of Trump’s post-election parties.

Bring out the big guns

Anyway, if they are going to appoint a member of the Crown to run the show, it will probably need to be the Queen herself.

The Queen’s legendary frown will bring order to this place and her corgis will be a welcome distraction for those who feel a sudden urge to Tweet or write a disparaging remark on Facebook.

According to Peter Winder, who chaired the Review and Observer Team (ROT) – now there’s an appropriate acronym – councillors are still carrying on like there is still an election.

There is actually a by-election going on but let’s not rub salt into the wound over and over and over and over again, because we want our councillors and mayor to be working harmoniously together for the greater good. We need roads and museums and things like that.

It’s a bit like having Mayfair and Park Lane with no hotels on them.

Anyway, good luck with that. I know Liz and the corgis will sort it out.


It’s that time again when we plug our mugs in the paper again in support of men’s health. There’s not long now before we can return to being our normal smooth selves but we still need to raise a few hundred more to reach our goal of $1000.

You can donate to any team or individual you like at the nz.Movember.com site or, if you aren’t too repulsed by ‘The Sun Mo Stars’ you can put your money where our mo’s are, thereby improving our status in the Movember ranks.

Remember all the proceeds go to various causes from suicide prevention to cancer.



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