Foreign freedom campers stuck in New Zealand have expressed their gratitude to Bay people who have opened their homes to them during the Covid-19 lockdown.
But one welcoming homeowner says it's just "what any Kiwi would do".
Harvey St residents Lynne and Richard met a young German couple while camping at Cooks Beach on the Coromandel Peninsula one night a couple of weeks ago.
Lynne said they gave the couple their contact information and told them: "If you get stuck, come to our place".
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On Wednesday last week, the tourists - desperate for somewhere to stay following the lockdown announcement - arrived on their Tauranga doorstep in their rented self-contained van.
Lynne said taking the "lovely young couple" in was an easy decision.
"We have plenty of space."
The tourists were using their downstairs area - a bedroom, bathroom, garage, rumpus room - and cooking in their van, while Lynne and Richard, who are both essential workers, stayed upstairs.
The two couples were isolating separately for now - chatting over the balcony or down the stairwell - but hoped to be able to relax that in time.
Lynne said the couple were close in age to her daughter in London, and it was nice to have young people around the house.
"If I get sick of talking to Richard I can go and talk to them."
Traveller Christian Schulte, 31, said he and his girlfriend Katherine Kroeger, 32, were "very very lucky" to be able to stay in Tauranga.
He said they arrived in New Zealand on March 1 and had planned to leave on March 30, but that flight had been cancelled and with both New Zealand and Germany introducing lockdowns, flights home had become extremely limited and expensive.
They were still trying to get repatriated, he said, but had no idea when that would happen. All they could do was hope the two nations' governments were cooperating.
Radio New Zealand reported on Thursday diplomatic negotiations had resumed on the repatriation of about 10,000 German nationals stranded in New Zealand.
In the afternoon the New Zealand Government announced a plan to allow foreign citizens to leave during the lockdown, including via charter repatriation flights organised by foreign governments.
"We want to go home," Schulte said.
Other German travellers they had met in the same situation had told them they had been forced to stay in expensive hotels or on the street.
"We are very lucky to stay here. Lynne and Richard are so lovely."
He hoped to be able to repay the favour one day and host them in Germany. He had been helping his hosts out with some building jobs.
Meanwhile, in Pāpāmoa, five travellers spent six days living in a public car park before being offered a house - free of charge.
British tourist Philip Elton, 29, said the group - which also included two French and two Dutch travellers - met a couple of weeks ago in Kerikeri and came to the Western Bay to find jobs in the kiwifruit harvest.
Three of their group had working holiday visas and two had tourist visas, but they understood they would be able to have these modified to allow them to work during the labour shortage.
Arriving in Tauranga, they found the process was more complicated than they thought.
"Until [Tuesday] evening, we were on the beach, in a freedom camping spot.
"Then we had someone contact us on Facebook saying they had a house for us."
The group had moved into the vacant house which, despite having no furniture, was a good deal safer and nicer than the car park.
Elton said he did not know how long they would be able to stay, but hoped to make an arrangement with the landlord, especially if they found work.
He said most people were friendly during their time in the car park. One bought them home baking, another some warm clothes. They also had a few visits from the police after calls from the public.
"One elderly couple swore at us."
Most people, however, recognised the group had nowhere else to go as, having been planning to freedom camp, they did not have enough money for a hotel and had found campgrounds closed.
Regional rules for freedom camping in a lockdown
Some councils around New Zealand have started rounding up freedom campers and directing them to a designated holiday park for the duration of the lockdown.
This has not yet happened in the Western Bay subregion, but authorities have this week been reviewing their approach.
Until new advice was received, a spokeswoman for the Western Zone Emergency Operations Centre said the situation was as follows:
· Authorities are not enforcing the freedom camping bylaw during level 4
· People in self-contained vehicles are deemed to be self-isolated but should limit their movements.
· People in non-self-contained vehicles and tents are not suitably self-isolated and are in breach of the level 4 rules.
· Everyone should continue to camp responsibly during the lockdown
· If anyone has concerns about people not self-isolating they should contact the police.