Public transport guide for new travellers in Auckland
If you're a new traveller or just visiting Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland, find out how to travel on buses, trains and ferries.
On this page
Travel with an AT HOP card
You can travel around Auckland on buses, trains and ferries in Auckland using an AT HOP card, which is a reusable prepaid travel card to use on public transport.
Using an AT HOP card to travel provides at least a 20% discount on every single trip compared to paying cash for bus, train and ferry fares (excludes Waiheke ferry services operated by Island Direct).
AT HOP cards also provide an integrated fare, meaning you can transfer between AT buses, trains and ferries and pay just one fare for numerous zones you travel. Learn more about integrated fares.
Note that cash is not accepted on AT buses.
How to get an AT HOP card
Buy an AT HOP card
You can buy an AT HOP card for $5 (excluding pre-loaded HOP cards) at a retail location near you or an AT customer service centre.
You can also buy it online and have it delivered to you.
Top up your HOP card and start travelling
Once you have your HOP card, all you need to do is top it up in person at a ticket machine located at bus stops, trains stations and ferry terminals.
You have to top up with a minimum of $1 at the time of purchase.
You can also top up online if you have registered your card. In that case, the minimum top up is $5.
Note: You can also visit one of our customer service centres to buy or top up an AT HOP card.
For a longer stay in Auckland
If you have a longer stay in Auckland, we recommend you register your AT HOP card to get the most value.
Register your card online
- top up and manage your transactions online
- set up auto top up to save time
- protect your balance if your card is ever lost or stolen, and
- apply for discounts or concessions.
Other ways to pay for public transport
We recommend you pre-pay for travel on buses, trains and ferries with the AT HOP card. However, there are other ways to pay for travel.
Paying for buses
Cash is not accepted on AT buses.
Paying for trains and ferries
Cash can be used to purchase a paper ticket for train and ferry travel only.
To travel you must have a valid pre-purchased ticket before boarding the train or ferry.
You can purchase single-trip paper tickets from the ticket and top-up machine or the customer service centre at all train stations and ferry terminals, except Northcote Point.
Passengers on Northcote Point will need to purchase a ticket when they depart or arrive at the Downtown Ferry Terminal.
Plan your journey
You can compare travel routes and times around Auckland and plan your journey using Journey Planner.
- Simply enter your starting point and end destination into the Journey Planner
- You will see transport options, cost, walking time, departure and arrival times.
- You can also search for a journey that leaves now, or for a selected time in the future.
Tips for travel
- Arrive early at your stop or station as some services, particularly buses, can run a few minutes ahead of schedule.
- Tag on with your AT HOP card to pay for your trip by holding your AT HOP card flat and still on the reader for a second. The reader will flash green if your 'tag on' is successful (or green and amber for cards that have a concession applied).
- Tag off when you've completed your journey, do the same as you exit the train station, bus, or ferry terminal to tag off. The reader (or electronic gate) will display the amount paid for your trip as well as your remaining AT HOP balance. Note: If you don't tag off, you may be charged a default fare.
- You can pay for others on the bus. Simple tag on as usual, then ask the bus driver to buy a paper ticket for your travelling companion.
- You can pay for others on the train. Use your HOP Money to buy a paper ticket from a Ticket & Top-up Machine.
Day trips from Auckland
Trip to Devonport by ferry
Travel from Downtown Ferry Terminal and return
- The ferry tick is valid for travel until end of services that day.
- Tickets can be purchased at the AT self-service machine or the customer service centre at the Downtown Ferry Terminal.
- Buy your ticket before you board and keep your ticket for the return journey.
- For bus travel at Devonport, please buy a AT HOP card at the AT customer service centre.
Devonport return ticket cost
The standard Adult ticket price is $16.
You can also get an AT HOP card and travel for $11.60 (plus $5 HOP card price) during peak hours.
You get a 10% discount if you travel and tag on during off peak hours. These are before 6am, between 9am to 3pm, and after 6.30pm until end of service on weekdays, and all day on weekends and public holidays.
Trip to Waiheke by ferry
Waiheke day trip packages start from $84 and includes:
- Return ferry travel from Downtown Ferry Terminal to Waiheke & return.
- AT HOP card – for use on buses, trains and ferries within Auckland Transport.
- Unlimited travel on AT buses on Waiheke Island.
- Day trip packages can be purchased from the AT customer services centre at the Downtown Ferry Terminal.