Whether you’re in New Zealand for a short time or you’re here to stay, you need to make a few preparations if you’re planning to drive while you’re here. In all cases, you need to bring your current driver licence from your home country.
You may also need an international driving permit or a translation of your licence if it’s not in English. If you’re staying more than 1 year, you’ll need to gain a New Zealand driver licence.
So, an international driving permit is required when you licence is not completely in English. Don’t risk the fine, get it sorted before you leave!