Speaking up for drivers

We work with the government, industry and media to represent the interests of our 1.5 million Members.

AA advocacy and policy work mainly focuses on protecting the freedom of choice and rights of drivers, keeping the cost of motoring fair and reasonable and enhancing the safety of all road users.

We strongly speak out when drivers aren't getting a fair deal.

Our views are research-based and reflect the responsible position the Association holds in New Zealand as the country's largest consumer organisation.

AA policy positions

Check out the AA's official policy positions on a range of issues in the areas of:

Representing drivers is about more than just cars

Members' interests extend beyond just cars and roads - they also rely on public transport, cycling and walking.

Ultimately, the AA supports freedom of mobility and individual choice. Members want to see a balanced transport system, including public transport, which preserves their freedom and mobility.

They expect a system that is responsive, safe, reasonably priced and environmentally sustainable.

Cars are invaluable

For the vast majority of us, cars are invaluable. Whether it's as a driver or passenger, we rely on cars to meet our day to day needs, and to enhance our quality of life. Ensuring that the rights of motorists are protected is important to us and it's also good for the economy.

Economic benefits are realised in the following ways:

Did you know?

80% of New Zealanders' travelling time is spent driving or as a passenger in cars.

  • The roading system is the basis of New Zealand's transport infrastructure and is vital to the nation's economic and social wellbeing
  • Vehicle-related industries generate income and employment for many New Zealanders
  • Road users collectively pay over $2 billion in taxes each year through fuels excise, road user charges and GST

However, the rights of motorists are often undermined. In the past this has taken the form of financial exploitation, particularly governments charging motorists levies and taxes that end up being spent on non-motoring or road related initiatives.

The car has been targeted for its contribution to emissions and climate change. This opens up the risk that motorists will face increased costs and be penalised to an extent that is out of proportion to the problems actually associated with car use.

In New Zealand, private cars account for less than 8% of our greenhouse gas emissions. Or to put it another way, 92% of New Zealand's emissions come from the other sources.

AA speaking up for motorists

Freedom of mobility and individual choice

The AA supports the freedom of New Zealanders to travel where they want to, how they want to, and will oppose attempts to restrict people's rights and freedoms. In particular, we'll oppose restrictions that make it more difficult for people to travel to work or make trips that contribute to the wellbeing of the individual, families and society.

Importance of the roading system

Motorists expect government to recognise the importance of the roading system to the country's economic and social health. Adequate, modern and safe roads must be provided at a fair, sustainable and transparent cost.

No taxing motorists to pay for non-motoring related initiatives

We are totally opposed to the Government taxing motorists to raise general revenue.

Environmentally sustainable motoring

Motoring can and should be environmentally sustainable. Today clean, green technology is available in cars and this rapid move to sustainable motoring will continue.

The growing trend to restrict the use of vehicles to help improve the environment is out of proportion to the environmental problem caused by private vehicles. It is a fact that private vehicles in New Zealand only contribute 8% of total greenhouse gases.

The AA and our Members recognise that motorists have their part to play in climate change, but this should be in proportion to the problems actually associated with car use. Any measures to control car use must be sensible, practical and phased in over time - while still allowing New Zealanders their freedom of mobility.

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