Thursday, July 18, 2024

DOC Great Walks booking system reopening delayed

The Department of Conservation (DOC) has announced a delay of the reopening of its Great Walks booking system, after a flood of bookings crashed the system in April.

The Department says it has decided to take more time to make sure the system is performing well before opening bookings for next season.

DOC says results from independent testing are expected in the second week of June and will help inform the best dates to open Great Walks bookings for the 2023-24 season.

“The system fix has been tested extensively by our provider and additional load testing will be done by the independent specialist,” says DOC Director of Heritage and Visitors, Cat Wilson.

“We are taking the time to do further testing to give us extra assurance ahead of the Great Walks bookings openings. We will provide another update to the public on 14 June. Bookings are likely to be open in July.

“DOC chose the existing system for its ability to handle flexible itineraries where users can choose the length of their trips and which facilities they stay in. Last season the system worked well, and that is what we want to see happen every year.”

Great Walks bookings were halted after 10,000 people logged in to book the Milford Track Great Walk on 20 April and met with technical issues. Despite the issues, the Milford Track was booked out by midday.

Bookings for the remaining seasonal Great Walks (October 2023-June 2024) will not go live until the booking system fixes have been signed off.

Outside of the Great Walks there are over 170 huts, campsites and lodges that can still be booked throughout New Zealand.

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