Here you’ll find answers to the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Auckland Explorer Bus, including where to buy tickets and how often the buses run.

Our friendly reservations team is also ready to assist with any other questions you may have – feel free to get in touch.

Our tours have regular departures throughout the day – approximately every 30 minutes from all stops*.

We add buses to the route according to demand, especially on days when large cruise ships are visiting Auckland.

*timings may vary due to traffic conditions

Depening on the season, we operate two different routes.

Over the summer season (November – April) we operate two routes, the Red Inner Tour and the Blue Outer Tour. The Red Inner Tour route starts and finishes at our main Downtown Auckland stop, which connects with the Blue Outer Tour at the Auckland Museum.

Over the winter season (May – October) we operate only one route, the Red Inner Tour.

The Red Inner Tour covers downtown and central Auckland plus eastern Auckland highlights, including the Sky Tower, Auckland Art Gallery, Newmarket, the Auckland War Memorial Museum, and SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium.

The Blue Outer Tour covers central and western Auckland, with highlights including Mt Eden / Maungawhau, Auckland Zoo and MOTAT. 

No, but as ticket availability is restricted per day we highly recommend pre-purchasing tickets to avoid disappointment or delays. Book your tickets here.

It’s easy to buy Auckland Explorer Bus tickets:

  • You can buy tickets online here,
  • From our street sales ambassadors located at Stop 1 (on Customs Street East) and Stop 2 (outside the Sky Tower on Victoria Street West).
  • Or from one of our agents around town including the isite Visitor Centres and the Harbour Information Centre inside the Downtown Ferry Building.

No sorry, we only accept New Zealand dollars.

Please note that our street sales ambassadors no longer accept cash payments, our team can accept payment through most major EFTPOS and credit card providers.

If you have purchased a voucher from one of our agents, please show it to our street sales ambassadors at Stop 1 (on Customs Street East) or Stop 2 (outside the Sky Tower on Victoria Street West) and they will exchange it for your Explorer Bus ticket.

We have both 24-hour and 48-hour pass options. Your pass expires 24 or 48 hours after you begin travelling with us.

If you’ve bought a combo package, the attraction ticket can be used up to 24 hours after your bus pass expires.

No, you need to visit either Stop 1 (on Customs Street East) or Stop 2 (outside the Sky Tower on Victoria Street West) to validate your ticket with our Street Sales Ambassadors before you start your tour. After this, you can hop on and off at any stop along the tour route.

The length of the tour is up to you! Your Auckland Explorer Bus tour can be as short as a one-hour sightseeing tour, or it can be all day (last tour departs Downtown Auckland at 4 pm, finishing at 5 pm).

Auckland Explorer Bus is a hop-on hop-off service, so you choose which attractions you’d like to hop off and visit and how long you would like to spend there. When you are ready to continue the tour, simply return to the bus stop and catch the next Auckland Explorer Bus.

A child is defined as anyone from the ages of 5 to 14 years. Children aged 0 to 4 years travel free if they’re held on an adult/guardian’s lap. Passengers aged 15 or over are defined as adults.

A family is defined as two adults and up to 2 children, 5 to 14 years of age.

Unfortunately, we do not offer discounts over and above our standard prices.

We can offer a group discount for groups of 15 or more people, subject to availability. Please email info@explorerbus.co.nz to enquire.

Our usual yellow buses are wheelchair accessible – sometimes we may use extra buses in times of higher demand, which may not be wheelchair accessible.

Our buses are a distinctive bright yellow with Auckland Explorer Bus signage.

On busy cruise ship days, we may add extra buses to the service that aren’t in our usual branding, but they will be displaying Auckland Explorer Bus signs in the window.

Yes, there is full commentary in English on the bus.

Yes, Auckland Explorer Bus operates 364 days of the year (closed on Christmas Day). However, if you want to travel on public holidays such as New Year’s Day or Easter Sunday, some of the attractions may be closed. We recommend checking the websites of the selected attractions you would like to visit ahead of time.

You’re welcome to bring small carry-on items such as handbags, backpacks, and collapsible strollers with you. Our buses do not have any luggage racks or undercarriage storage, so we cannot carry large luggage items.

Sorry, we do not offer hotel pickups.

You will need to show your ticket to the driver each time you board the bus, so keep it somewhere safe but easily accessible. If you lose your paper ticket you may be required to buy another to continue your tour.

If you have left something on one of our buses, please advise the driver of the next bus. They will communicate with our other drivers and let you know if it has been found. If the item has not been found, you can share your contact details with them so we can contact you if it is found later in the day.