Founders of a new Bay of Plenty company hope the venture will start a "chain of spending" in domestic tourism.
Chuffed Gifts, created by Tauranga's James Fitzgerald and the team at Rotorua's Canopy Tours, aims to boost the New Zealand tourism industry while offering Kiwis a simple way to gift experiences.
The new business launched this week allows buyers to purchase a package with activity options inside from a range of North Island tourist operators. The recipient is then able to select one of their choices to do.
Fitzgerald said it was an idea he had for a long time but Covid-19 was the catalyst to launch.
"We faced a situation where we had to make some staff redundant. We didn't want to do that to them in the middle of a nationwide lockdown, so we instead started Chuffed Gifts and offered them roles in it."
He said it could also have a positive impact on fellow tourism operators and boost the domestic industry while borders remained shut.
"We wanted to do something that would stimulate demand for tourism on a national level."
Around 60 tourism operators had jumped on board across the country with the idea that anyone who received the gift would only be about two to three hours from an activity.
There were 150 experiences on offer as far away as Tutukaka in the Far North down to Taupō.
Fitzgerald said they planned to expand out to the South Island once the ball got rolling but the business was in its "first stages".
He said he hoped that the activities would also spark a "chain of spending" in domestic tourism with people booking accommodation or buying gas in different places to use their gift.
"It has never been more relevant or important."
The feedback had been "great" with many people buying the packages for wedding presents or partners when deciding a weekend getaway, he said.
He said he also had a number of businesses buy packages for employee incentives.
Around 15 of the tourism providers were based in the Rotorua and Tauranga areas, with Fitzgerald saying they were always after more to get involved.
Initial sales had been "promising" and he hoped that it could be embraced even more as the Christmas season approaches.
"Local tourism operators and businesses need our support now more than ever."
Rotorua's Secret Spot Hot Tubs was one of the businesses involved with co-owner Keith Kolver saying Fitzgerald "did business well" and always delivered on what he promised.
He said the idea "hit the spot perfectly" for local tourism providers as it got them right in front of their target domestic audience.
He said they were thrilled to be on board and hoped their business would be a popular one for those looking to treat themselves.
Packages start at $79 with options for people of all ages and interests, including packages for two, as well as adventure, relaxation, and bucket list experiences.
The packages also come in a recyclable tube to save buyers from having to wrap them up.
ZORB Rotorua was another tourist operator offered in the packages, with marketing and sales executive Charlotte Brady saying she thought it was a "fabulous idea", especially in the current climate.
It was a "great initiative" and something a bit different than the "stock standard present", she said.
"I think people are more mindful about their gift-giving now, especially when it comes to supporting local."
Tourism Bay of Plenty spokeswoman Kath Low said the effects of Covid-19 on the tourism industry were "broad and unprecedented" but "out of the devastation we have also seen incredible innovation and generosity".
She said Chuffed Gifts was an innovative idea to help the tourism industry when it most needed it.
"There is a significant gap that tourism businesses are struggling to fill. Any initiative that aims to fill this gap is vital to the survival of New Zealand's tourism economy."
Destination Rotorua's interim chief executive Andrew Wilson said the year's challenges had inspired the start-up of a number of innovative new businesses.
"Their [Chuffed Gifts] gift buying model is a great way of helping New Zealanders to appreciate the quality of the tourism experiences that we have on our doorstep."