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Auckland Transport

Tertiary student discount terms & conditions Tertiary student discount terms & conditions

Terms and conditions in relation to eligibility for a tertiary discount on train and selected bus and ferry services.

The purpose of the Auckland Transport ("AT") Tertiary Concessionary Fare Scheme ("Tertiary Concession Fare Scheme") is to provide discounted travel for eligible full time tertiary students to use public transport to get to/from their NZQA accredited and approved tertiary course.


Full-Time Students who are enrolled and attending an NZQA accredited and approved tertiary course at an AT Approved Tertiary Provider are eligible.

AT approved tertiary provider

To be an AT approved tertiary provider, the provider must meet the relevant criteria:

  • be Ministry of Education registered,
  • be NZQA registered (private training establishments and transitional industry training organisations),
  • offer NZQA approved and accredited tertiary courses,
  • located in the Auckland region,
  • and signed a Tertiary Participation agreement with AT.

An "App-Approved Provider" is an AT Approved Tertiary Provider that has been authorised by AT to provide student eligibility confirmation via the AT Mobile app. Such providers must sign a Memorandum of Understanding in relation to AT HOP Tertiary Concession verification with AT.

In accordance with Auckland's Regional Public Transport Plan, AT has a responsibility to review its concessionary fare scheme (including the Tertiary Concession Fare Scheme) on a regular basis; outcomes of a review may result in changes to the Tertiary Concession Fare Scheme.

Meaning of "Full time student"

The Tertiary Education Commission ("TEC") assigns an Equivalent Full Time Student ("EFTS") value to each course to determine if it meets the full time status criteria. StudyLink, a service of the Ministry of Social Development uses EFTS for assessing student loan and student allowance application.

AT has used the TEC's EFTS value to determine an individual's full time student status. For institutes with a credits/points system, the points or credits assigned to a tertiary paper or course are converted to an EFTS value based on StudyLink's EFTS calculation. The total number of EFTS value determines an individual student's full time status and the validity period of their concession.

AT's tertiary concession sticker is available on an annual or semester basis as determined by the students' full time status.

"Full-time student" means:

  • A full time/full year student who has a minimum of 0.8 EFTS points when enrolled and attending a full time tertiary course for a minimum of 32 consecutive weeks or more in a full academic year
  • A full time/part year student (i.e. for one semester) who has 0.4 EFTS points when enrolled and attending a full time tertiary course for a minimum of 16 consecutive weeks at one time within the academic year (i.e. not spread out over the course of the year)
  • A limited full time student who meets StudyLink’s limited full time student definition with an approval letter from StudyLink. StudyLink defines limited full-time status as a provision for students who are unable to undertake the workload of a full-time course.

Confirming eligibility

In order to have a tertiary concession loaded onto their AT HOP card, students must first have their eligibility confirmed in one of these two ways:

  1. Be issued with a valid Auckland Transport Tertiary ID sticker ("AT Tertiary ID sticker") by their AT Approved Tertiary Provider, applied to their valid tertiary student ID card issued by their AT Approved Tertiary Provider ("Tertiary Student ID card")
  2. or have a smartphone with the AT Mobile App, which status displays "Eligible" on the Tertiary Concessions page. This option only applies to students who are attending an App-Approved Provider.

Some practical examples

AT Tertiary ID sticker - Full time/full year student

If a student is enrolled for a full year, they will only be issued with a full year AT Tertiary ID sticker (expiry 31 March of the following year) if they are enrolled in a full year course for a minimum of 32 consecutive weeks.

AT Mobile App - Full time/full year student

With the AT Mobile App, the tertiary concession is now available for up to 3 years subject to the student's ongoing eligibility as a full time student. A student needs to consent at the time of application to have their eligibility initially confirmed and subsequent ongoing revalidation with their App- Approved Provider. When the eligibility is confirmed the active concession will be displayed within the AT Mobile app.

AT Tertiary ID sticker - Full time/part year students

If a student's first semester EFTS value is 0.4 points and they are enrolled and attending a course for a minimum of 16 consecutive weeks, but if the student's second semester EFTS value is only 0.3 points, the student is deemed to be full time for the first semester but not for the second semester and will be issued with an AT Tertiary ID sticker for the first semester only.

If the course is less than the 16 weeks minimum but has an EFTS value of 0.4 or more, a student enrolled on such a course is not deemed to be eligible for an AT Tertiary ID sticker.

As a guide, if the course starts part way through the academic year and continues beyond 31 August of the same year the student may be issued with a full year AT Tertiary ID sticker only if they are enrolled and attending a full time course for a minimum of 16 consecutive weeks.

The student's Tertiary Student ID card must state the end date of their course as the expiry date of their Tertiary Student ID card. Otherwise, using this example, the student is only eligible for the part year sticker with an expiry of 31 August of the same year.

The student will only be able to receive the Tertiary Concession up to the expiry of their Tertiary Student ID card or the expiry of their AT Tertiary ID sticker - whichever occurs first. For example, if a student's Tertiary Student ID card expires 31 October 2021 and their AT Tertiary ID sticker expires 31 March 2022, the concession will only be available up to 31 October 2021.

AT Mobile app - Full time/part year students

If the student attending an App-Approved Provider has opted to use the AT Mobile app and have their eligibility confirmed this way, once loaded onto the AT HOP card, the concession will be available for the duration of the first semester. If the student's enrollment for the second semester does not meet the 0.4 EFTS requirement, the App-Approved Provider will notify AT when their eligibility changes.

The student will be notified and their Tertiary concession on their AT HOP card will expire 2 weeks after notification unless their enrollment status changes and the EFTS value meets or exceeds the 0.4 requirements.

All full-time Students must produce a fees receipt/certificate issued by their AT Approved Tertiary Provider confirming their eligibility as a full time student when applying for an AT Tertiary ID sticker (see Tertiary ID stickers).


  • Full-time students who are eligible to receive fees-free education and training are also eligible.
  • Students that fall under any of the below scenarios are NOT eligible for the Tertiary Concession Fare Scheme:
    • Part-time students
    • Youth Guarantee, Foundation-Focused Training Opportunities, and all other students enrolled in similar government funded courses
    • Correspondence study or distance learning or receive government funding for their transport.

What is included

The applicable tertiary discount applies to travel using an AT HOP card loaded with a tertiary concession for use on train and selected bus and ferry services. Refer to the Supplementary Information section for operator specific tertiary passes.

The tertiary fares are at least 20% less than the adult AT HOP single trip fare on trains and selected bus and ferry services listed on Tertiary student concession.

Please check the relevant train, bus and ferry fare schedules for tertiary concession fares.

Tertiary ID stickers

If the student does not attend an App-Approved Provider, or they do not have access to a capable smart phone, they must have a valid AT Tertiary ID sticker (available on campus) on their valid Tertiary Student ID card in order to obtain the tertiary concession.

There are two types of AT Tertiary ID stickers:

  • First semester only students will be issued with a pink coloured sticker (valid up until 31 August 2021 from date of issue).
  • Second semester only and full year students will be issued with a green coloured sticker (valid up until 31 March 2022 from date of issue).

Tertiary concession application process

Visit Tertiary student concession for information on how to apply for the tertiary discount.

Where you can go in Auckland

Considerable effort is made to ensure the tertiary discount applies as widely as possible.

The tertiary discount is available on all services operated under a contract between Auckland Transport and public transport operators.

There are some services which are not covered under the Tertiary Concession Fare Scheme in addition to those listed in Supplementary information - Other products and services.

Auckland Transport and its operators reserve the right to add or remove any route or service from the Tertiary Fare Concession Scheme at any time without notice. If in doubt, students should check directly with the relevant operators to see if they accept the AT Tertiary concession or provide their own tertiary fare discount. Refer to the Supplementary Information section for operator specific tertiary passes.

Conditions of travel

Tertiary concessions on AT HOP cards are available to be used on train and selected bus and ferry services.

Note: An adult fare will be charged to tertiary students due to the following reasons:

  • if they do not load a tertiary concession on to their AT HOP card,
  • or are unable to confirm their eligibility status via the AT Mobile App,
  • or are unable to present a valid Tertiary Student ID card with a valid AT Tertiary ID sticker.

We may (at any time and without notice to you) revise these terms and conditions. Changes to these terms and conditions will take effect immediately once they are published on our website.

Supplementary information - Other products and services

Operator Specific Tertiary Discounts

Some operators provide services that are not contracted by Auckland Transport. To find out more information about potential tertiary fares, visit:

Tertiary shuttles

Independently to the Tertiary Concessionary Fare Scheme a number of tertiary providers run shuttle bus services between campuses to ensure the provider is accessible for students who may be studying at more than one campus.

Check with your tertiary provider to determine if shuttle bus services are available.

Terms of use of the AT HOP cards are available here.

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