July 29, 2020

We are local, we are family

You’ll hear us talk about being locally and family owned a lot and it’s something we are extremely proud of here at KJet.

We are a family owned business aiming to give our guests memorable experiences, sharing stories and sights that only our slice of New Zealand offers. We are driven to deliver an unparalleled, value-for-money, friendly and exciting Jet boat ride on the scenic waterways of Queenstown, ensuring at all times the safety and comfort of our passengers.

In 1987, Shaun Kelly (with the help of his late mother Pauline) purchased KJet, which was one Jet boat – Hamilton Jet 73. Since 1987, Shaun and wife Sally have grown the business to what it is today – a fleet of 8 Jet boats, the biggest in New Zealand, with the capacity to take 140 passengers at one time. KJet also owns two race boats which Shaun and son Joe like to race at speeds of over 200km/h and have traveled all over the world participating in international Jet boat marathons.

Shaun has been hands on in the business and still is very much today with business partners Skeggs Group. He is pictured here driving a boat of passengers in around 1987. Shaun still gets out and drives trips when he’s required.

Kawarau Jet acquired many Jet boat companies over the years – nine in fact! In 1999, Kawarau Jet obtained Heli Jet and in 2004 absorbed Twin Rivers Jet.

KJet is heavily involved in the Queenstown community, offering Jet boat trips to community groups for fundraising opportunities. We have worked with St Johns, Queenstown Playcentre, Queenstown Primary School, St Joseph’s Primary School, Queenstown Winter Festival, Heart Kids Southland, Garston Dog Trial Club, Avalanche Dog Fundraiser, Mossburn Golf Club, Ronald McDonald House, Queenstown Resort College, Charity TV (supporting Mothers Helpers and St Johns) – to name a few!

Every September our staff head out for two weeks and deliver meals on wheels on behalf of the Queenstown hospital, giving staff a chance to engage with long term locals who have been in the region for many years.

Cure Kids is a charity that KJet have supported for 15 years, Jet boating children (and their families) who live with serious diseases and health conditions. Customers purchasing a Jet boat trip are also able to donate to Cure Kids on our website.

KJet are on the emergency response list for New Zealand Police when looking for, locating and retrieving a missing person on Lake Wakatipu, the Shotover and Kawarau Rivers. We are proud to have been involved with Search and Rescue for many years.

  • Early Jet boat 1987 with KJet Queenstown owner Shaun Kelly driving
  • Crazy Hair Day with Queenstown Primary school with KJet jet boat in Queenstown bay
  • KJet Winter festival with kids on jet boat in Queenstown CBD