With lots to do and see in the city, it’s helpful to know how best to get in and travel around. So here is an updated guide on the best ways to get in, out and around on public transport - it's cheaper and easier than you think!

Before you set off  

Registered HOP cards only
No cash is accepted on board any public transport vehicle, so this means you must use an AT HOP card. HOP Cards can be found at many convenience stores in the central city, check out the AT website here to see where you can purchase an AT HOP card if you do not already own one. 

Kids travel free on weekends
All kids ages 5-15 with a registered AT Hop card travel free of charge on buses trains and ferries (excluding Waiheke ferries) on weekends and public holidays. Children under 5 travel free all days of the week when accompanied by a fare paying passenger. 

The AT Journey Planner or AT Mobile app 
We recommend you plan your trip using the AT Journey Planner or the AT Mobile app in order to find the best route possible, as well as the most recent updates on bus and train services in real time.

Bring your bikes and scooters and enjoy the city centre on wheels
Bikes and scooters travel free with any fare-paying passenger on most ferry and train services, subject to available space. Peak train times not recommended. On buses, scooters and bikes are allowed if they are folding. See here for more information

Deals and fares 

Not aware of how cheap and cheerful public transport can be? The points below are worth knowing about. 

  • Kids ride free on weekends and public holidays.
    Children 5-15, inclusive, travelling with a registered AT HOP card can travel free on trains, buses and ferries* on weekends and on public holidays. Children under five already travel free of charge. *Applies to the following weekend ferry services: Bayswater, Beach Haven, Birkenhead, Devonport, Half Moon Bay and Hobsonville Point. Standard child fares apply to Waiheke services. 
     
  • Travel from as little at $2.00 each way with an AT HOP Card.
    A fare for a one zone trip on a bus and train is just $2.00. A two zones fare $3.55. To calculate how much your fare will cost with a HOP Card, use the AT Journey Planner
     
  • Catching a ferry + bus or train in one trip? Only pay for one fare. 
    As of July 2020, ferry services have joined AT Metro’s integrated fare system. This means you can transfer between AT bus, train and ferry and pay just one fare for your entire journey with your AT HOP card.
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Buses

There are many buses that come in from all parts of Auckland to the city centre, with the main ones being the Outerlink, Innerlink, TamakiLink and Northern Express buses. 

OuterLink

  • The OuterLink (bright orange bus) is a loop journey that covers the inner suburbs of Auckland City including Parnell, Newmarket, Epsom, Balmoral, Mt Eden, St Lukes, Mt Albert, Westmere, Herne Bay and the city centre. 
  • Runs in both directions on the loop route and are scheduled every 15 minutes.
  • Best locations to depart the OuterLink bus for city centre exploring are Hobson Street and  Wellesley St E (outside or across from the ASB bank).

InnerLink

  • The InnerLink (bright green bus) is the easiest way to get around the inner city. This loop will pass by Britomart, Spark Arena, Parnell, The Auckland Museum, New Market, Karangahape Road, Ponsonby Road, Victoria Park, SkyCity and Queen Street.
  • Runs in both directions and is scheduled for every 10 minutes Monday-Friday (6:30am-8pm) and every 15 minutes on weekends and from 8-11pm on weekdays.
  • Best locations to depart the InnerLink bus for city centre exploring are Victoria St W, any stop along Queen St and Customs St.

TāmakiLink

  • The TāmakiLink (bright blue bus) is the easiest way to get into the city centre from the Eastern Bays. This route travels along Tāmaki Drive from Britomart, passing Spark Arena toward Okahu Bay, Mission Bay, Kohimarama Beach, St Heliers Bay and Glen Innes.
  • The TāmakiLink bus operates every 15 minutes in both directions.
  • If you’re coming into the city centre from the Eastern Bays, the best stop to depart the bus is on Customs Street near Britomart.

NX1

  • The NX1 bus is perfect for connecting those coming from the North Shore and Hibiscus Coast into the city centre, traveling along the Northern Busway from Hibiscus Coast Station stopping at Albany Station, Constellation Station, Sunnynook Station, Smales Farm, Akoranga station, and then to Downtown at the soon to be finished Lower Albert St bus station (late 2020). 
  • The NX1 travels in both directions very frequently daily (every 5 and 10 minutes during peak times) from 5am-11:30pm with a night bus on Fridays from midnight to 2:30am.
  • The best location to depart the bus for city centre exploring its end stop on Customs Street.

CityLink

While you’re in the city, the City Link (bright red bus) can help you visit all areas of the heart of the city looping from Wynyard Quarter to Britomart up Queen Street to Karangahape Road along to Pitt Street and back down Queen Street toward Wynyard Quarter. 

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Trains

Trains cater to those coming in from areas in the East, South and West of Auckland dropping passengers in the heart of the city at Britomart Station. 

Western Line, Southern Line, Eastern Line and Onehunga Line

  • The Western Line operates between Swanson and the city centre (Britomart) via Henderson and New Lynn.
  • The Southern Line operates between Pukekohe and the city centre (Britomart) via Manurewa and Newmarket.
  • The Eastern Line operates between Manukau and the city centre (Britomart) via Sylvia Park and Panmure.
  • The Onehunga Line operates between Onehunga and the city centre (Britomart) via Penrose and Ellerslie.

Click here to see the Auckland train network line map to see what station is closest to you, and how they connect to get in to the city centre.  

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Ferries

Ferries are a great option for visitors coming in from the North Shore, Waiheke Island and areas such as Hobsonville and Half Moon Bay. 

As of July 2020, ferry services have joined AT Metro’s integrated fare system. This means you can transfer between AT bus, train and ferry and pay just one fare for your entire journey with your AT HOP card.

Free Child Weekend fares now apply to the following weekend ferry services: Bayswater, Beach Haven, Birkenhead, Devonport, Half Moon Bay and Hobsonville Point. Standard child fares apply to Waiheke services. 

To see Auckland ferry maps and timetables, click here

See here for more details on ferry journeys into the city centre.

Last updated: 12 October 2020

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