The group of unruly British tourists who have created headlines around the world appear to be making plans to leave New Zealand with the first of the group boarding a flight to Hong Kong yesterday.

The Herald understands four of the group boarded a flight to Hong Kong which left Auckland Airport at 3pm yesterday.

Four others were seen leaving the airport in a car but drove off when approached by the Herald.

The group, including the man who called himself John Johnson, were spotted again in central Auckland later yesterday afternoon.

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Their bashed up and grubby Honda Odyssey had been parked in a loading zone on Shortland St for hours and was ticketed for overstaying the five minute time-limit.

The oldest man in the group eventually returned to the vehicle, which had two suitcases in it, around 4.45pm.

Rejecting offers to talk to a reporter on the scene by blankly ignoring them, the patriarch fired up the van and drove around the corner into Queen St.

Other members of the family including John Johnson and a woman got in the van near Vulcan Lane.

The true identities of the family also came to light yesterday.

The eldest member of the group was 55-year-old grandmother Barbara Doran, the Daily Mail Australia reported.

Joe Doran, right, left Auckland Airport in a green Honda Odyssey with three other members of the family. Photo / NZME
Joe Doran, right, left Auckland Airport in a green Honda Odyssey with three other members of the family. Photo / NZME

And despite being known around New Zealand as "John Johnson", the unofficial spokesman for the family was, in fact, named Joe Doran.

He's married to Miley Doran and the pair have reportedly lived in various caravan parks around the East Midlands of the UK.

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Barbara Doran also told the Daily Mail she was too scared to sleep at night and that the family believed they were being "tortured" by the New Zealand public.

"I'm very, very frightened, honestly,' Barbara Doran told Daily Mail Australia.

The family - the so-called "holidaymakers from hell" - have made headlines around the world after leaving rubbish on Takapuna Beach and abusing a local woman.

Members of the group arrived in New Zealand on December 29 and have remained in the headlines ever since the video of them leaving rubbish on the beach emerged.

There have been several accounts of members refusing to pay for food or services, hectoring hospitality staff and claiming their food had been contaminated by ants or hair.

Last Wednesday, a 26-year-old female member of the group pleaded guilty in the Hamilton District Court to stealing energy drinks, a rope and sunglasses from an Auckland service station on two separate occasions.

The court heard Tina Maria Cash stole a can of Red Bull from a Caltex service station at Albany on December 31.

On January 3, Cash allegedly returned to the Caltex service station with her children and stole more Red Bull, rope and sunglasses valued at $50.

Last Tuesday the family was trespassed from Burger King Te Rapa after the family walked through the drive-through. Police and Immigration staff spoke to them outside the restaurant and issued a number of them with deportation liability notices.

Over the weekend they were accused of leaving a Kiwi motel "stinking of kid's poo".