Having the right communication device can be a lifesaver in an emergency.

Your mobile phone may not be enough with New Zealand’s sometimes spotty coverage in the outdoors. Even on some short tracks. You should consider carrying a second communication device if you know coverage will be unreliable or if you are unsure.

Two devices could be a mobile phone and a satellite device, or a personal locator beacon (PLB). There are a range of devices available. Some device types are listed below. Do research into what works for you.


Why take a communication device?

There are a number of reasons you'll need to be able to communicate to others. 

  • You might get lost and need rescuing
  • You could change your route and need to alert a friend
  • You could be running late and need to stay an extra night
  • You might want to get updates in the weather along the way
  • You could get injured or be in an emergency situation and require rescue.  



Communication Devices

Remember – if you have a device, learn how to use it. 

Knowing the strengths and weaknesses of your equipment is also important. For example, a mobile phone is easy to use, and you may already have one, but it will be no use if there is no coverage.

Evaluate functions such as coverage area, type of message or signal sent, capabilities of receiving messages, costs vs benefits and lifespan of the device.

Explore the various options below:

What to do next

Continue your preparation with our online resources, there is still plenty to learn to ensure for a safe and enjoyable trip!

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