Skip to Main Content
Auckland Transport

Guide to using buses, trains and ferries Guide to using buses, trains and ferries

Guide for first-time users

For your own safety and comfort, as well as those around you, the simple tips below ensure everyone enjoys a pleasant trip.

Guide for going on the bus

  • Please ensure you have a valid AT HOP card with enough credit before deciding to travel. Cash or debit/credit card payments are not accepted on Auckland Transport buses.
  • Arrive at your bus stop.
    • Many stops have numerous buses coming through, so make sure you watch carefully for your bus.
    • The buses route number is displayed above the bus front window.
      To hail a bus, signal the bus to stop by a clear wave of your arm to show the bus driver you want to get on.
  • Once the bus has stopped, wait for passengers who are exiting to leave the bus, and then walk onto the bus through the front door.
  • Once on the bus, tag on with your AT HOP card on the reader to your right as you walk in. Wait for the sound and the reader to either flash green or green and amber (for cards that have a concession applied) and then go and sit down.
  • Follow your AT Mobile app to see when you need to get off. The app will notify you when you need to get off.
  • When you are approaching your stop, press the stop button. These are red buttons that are throughout most buses. Please push it to allow enough time for the driver to stop safely.
  • Once the bus has stopped, you can exit either from the front or back door (expect students who must get off the front door on school services). Don’t forget to tag your AT HOP card before getting off the bus.

Guide for going on the train

  • Arrive at your station.
  • Please ensure you have a valid AT HOP card with enough credit or you have purchased a ticket at the station kiosk or ticket machines.
  • Either use your paper ticket or tag on your AT HOP Card. Stations will either have electronic gates or tag on/off posts at the entrance of the platform.
    Check on the displays or on your AT Mobile app to see what platform your train will be on.
  • Go to the platform where your train will be leaving from.
  • Once the train has arrived and stopped, the doors will open.
  • Get onto the train and take a seat.
  • Check your AT Mobile app or listen out for the announcement to know when your stop is.
  • Once the train has arrived at your stop, push the green button at the door and exit the train.
  • Exit the station, making sure you tag off your AT HOP card at either the platform or the electronic gates.

Guide for going on the ferry

  • Arrive at your Ferry Terminal.
    • If you are travelling to or from Waiheke for the day, luggage storage facilities are available at the Downtown and Waiheke Ferry Terminals.
    • There are bike racks at the ferry terminal if you need to store your bike.
  • Please ensure you have a valid AT HOP card with enough credit or you have purchased a ticket at the station kiosk or ticket machines.
  • Either tag on your AT HOP card at the gates or the tag on/tag off posts at the entrance or use your paper ticket.
  • Go to the gate where your ferry is departing from.

  • Once staff open the gates, board the boat.
    • Bicycles can be carried on most ferry services for free. (This service not available on the West Harbour Ferry, Harbour Cruise, Rangitoto Island and Tiritiri Matangi Island ferries).
    • Wheel your bike onto the ferry. Some boats have racks, others have hooks, and with others, you can lean your bike against a rail, or stand out the back with your bike. If unsure, ask one of the ferry staff.
  • Go into the boat and find a seat.
    • Alcohol and food can only be consumed on certain ferries and only if it has been purchased on board.
  • When the ferry has arrived at your location, wait for the ferry to stop and the doors to be open to exit the boat.
  • Remember to tag off your AT HOP Card at either the electronic gates or the tag posts.


What not to do on public transport

  • No smoking is allowed on buses, trains or ferries at any time. This includes the use of e-cigarettes and vaping.
  • Strictly no alcohol to be consumed onboard buses, trains or at stations.
  • Do not block doors, and whenever possible on a bus move down the aisle.
  • We ask that you refrain from resting your feet on the seats.

What we encourage people to do on public transport

  • When boarding a bus, train or ferry, let others off first so it is faster for everyone.
    When on a bus, ensure you take a seat. If there are no seats, please stand and support yourself using the handles.
  • Give your seat to seniors, pregnant women, people with small children or anyone with special needs.
  • Drinks can be consumed from an enclosed container such as a coffee cup with a lid, or bottled water.
  • Take off backpacks and store bags under seats or on your lap – do not store them on a spare seat.
  • When listening to personal audio devices, use headphones set at a volume that ensures other passengers are not disturbed.
  • Take all your belongings, including rubbish, with you.
    • If you have left something on a bus, train or ferry, you need to call the operator of the service that you were on directly to report your lost property.
    • If you find something on a bus, train or ferry, please hand it to the driver or staff as soon as possible.
  • Find out more information about travelling with prams, luggage, bikes and animals - see luggage, bikes & animals.