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Topping up your AT HOP card online

For the most part, the roll out of AT HOP  to trains seems to have gone fairly smoothly with few issues so congratulations to AT for this. Perhaps the only area that has been any comment is around the online portal, AT have released this point of clarification about the process.

POINT OF CLARIFICATION – AT HOP CARD

 

Auckland Transport advises customers, who have bought AT HOP cards and want to top-up online, of the following process to enable the funds to be transferred to the card and shown online.

  • Purchase an AT HOP card from  an Auckland Transport Ambassador or Veolia ticket office at one of the 42 train stations around the network.
  • To top up online,  register your card  at www.ATHOP.co.nz and follow the steps.
  • Wait one minute before topping up online or adding an Auto Top-Up to your card.
  • If you have added funds online before 10pm the funds will be available on your card  when you next  tag on to an AT HOP card reader or go through the electronic gates at a train station the following day .
  • Once you have tagged on your new balance will appear on the reader and show in your online account at ATHOP.co.nz
  • 72 hours is the worst case scenario for online top-up. In the majority of cases, if a customer tops up before 10pm online, and tags on, the balance will show on an AT HOP reader and online, in 24 hours
  • AT HOP cards differ from bank issued debit cards in that the balance is stored on the card itself as opposed to on a central system

Auckland Transport apologises for any confusion AT HOP card customers have experienced.

For further information www.ATHOP.co.nz or call 366 4467

135 comments to Topping up your AT HOP card online

  • This is a pretty piss-poor effort, to be quite blunt. This processing is not anything to do with inter-bank processing, since it says nothing about delays for weekends or public holidays, it’s entirely down to how AT are handling payment processing internally. It should be nearly instantaneous.

    • Stranded on the North Shore

      I think they’re trying to be safe and set 10pm as the time. They might make it later at a later stage. 10pm cutoff means that they can create a file with all the topups, and load it onto the list to flag for top up next time you swipe your card on a gate reader. Ideally I’d like to see them update that list, say every 15 minutes, but that file would have to be transferred every 15 minutes to each card reader there is (every ferry, bus, train). I think they should be a bit more open about their architecture so that people can understand the system better.

  • Sam

    If I top up at a station ticket/top up machine is that instantly added to my card or do I have to wait a day?

    • Instantly, it is connected to the system.

      • How the hell does that work if it takes 24+ hours when you topup online? Surely it’s the same system for updates via platform machine or the website? Or has someone utterly bollocksed-up the architecture?

        • Hamish O

          At the machine the card is present tin the machine and the funds can be added straight away.

          On-line the tag on posts need to be updated with a list containing your card number and the value of funds to add when you tag on. As you will see below I believe this list should update basically in real time as the tag on posts are physically wired into the system.

          • I get that the card is present, but if the value can be immediately altered from the platform how is it not immediately altered if you do the topup online? It’s the same back-end, is it not? Or does the platform machine not push back to the network immediately, meaning that your topup is only recognised at that station for however long it takes for the system to be updated with the new value?

            The more I hear the worse this implementation sounds.

          • Hamish O

            Matt, I think what you are missing is that the value of funds on the card is not stored in a ‘back end’ system but on the card itself.

            This can cause problems, but is also the reason systems like Snapper and AT Hop are so fast compared to eftpos or credit card transactions.

          • Matt – The card is the master record and is what holds the transaction data. Topping up via a machine instantly loads that payment onto the card. When a top up is done online say via CC, the payment itself is cleared by DPS and has to be deployed to the machines before it can load on to the card. The reason these payment updates are only deployed once a day, instead of perhaps more frequently is the same process has to be used for buses when they roll out next year. Many buses only go back to their depots at night (and apparently some don’t always go back each night) and it is at their depots where they will connect to the system and upload all of the data.

          • bbc

            A lot of the buses have wifi so surely this could be utilised to download the card data?

          • Yes wifi is what is used to download the data at the depots, who knows maybe in the future there may be a number of super stops where it could also be installed to grab data on the fly

          • There are only a limited number of terminus points. Putting a WiFi connection at each to allow a push update every time a bus is in the vicinity would make the system much more robust. Also takes care of the issue of buses that may not go back to their depot every day.

            Again, the whole thing smells cheap and nasty. For what the system has cost there should be live balance updates to fixed infrastructure with the capability to push updates to buses when they pass or near certain points. And I know that that is possible because I’ve been involved in a project which has been looking at pushing large volumes of data to vehicles that are merely passing certain points. These would be compressed text files of only a few-hundred KB, at worst.

          • Hamish O

            Maybe not cheap but ‘unfinished’ in the sense a lot of work can still be done to improve it.

          • The question though is if it is worth risking the whole system to have additional features available from day one, better to start small and build up from there.

        • I don’t consider topups showing up within a couple of hours to be an “extra feature”, I consider it to be basic functionality that isn’t in any way optional in this day and age. I certainly don’t consider it in any way acceptable that people are waiting three or four days to see topped up balances showing. Cheap, and nasty, especially for $48m or whatever it’s cost Auckland.

          Getting this stuff right with the fixed infrastructure is vital, because if they can’t do it right with things that aren’t moving they’re utterly buggered once they add buses into the mix. These are the fundamentals, not nice-to-haves like being able to topup from your mobile phone right before you jump on a bus.

          • Online top up is an extra feature and the regular top up at ticket machines is instantaneous.

          • There’s a penalty for topping up at the machines, however. So you get penalised either way. Not cool.

          • Hamish O

            I don’t understand the penalty either. They don’t need to make money from ticketing like Snapper does. Maybe it’s part of achieving a 50% fare-box recovery rate. The auto-top up is free though. I do agree with you to an extent Matt that it is better to release features such as online top up when they are ready and not just half-baked, that would avoid these kind of issues that tarnish a brand (for the second time).

        • Kate

          Why is it that snapper are able to have a smartphone app that enables instantaneous top up, but AT can’t manage it?

  • How is it going to be instantaneous if the money is stored on the card? The card has to connect to the system at some point for the money to be loaded on…maybe they should have an available balance table value on the website to show the theoretical balance?

    • Hamish O

      When you tag on the post should recognise your card as having a top-up pending and add the top-up. A good system would send a signal to tag on posts every minute or so with all the cards with pending top-ups. I’m confused by what a you mean about theoretical balances?

      • Stranded on the North Shore

        It’s about balance. Do you want to be funding a vodafone/telecom data connection every minute uploading each top up to each reader (on every ferry, every train station & every bus!) ??? hmmm… I think what they’re doing is reasonable.

      • The computer system should be able to determine that you have added a top-up, but the top-up hasn’t been added to the card as of yet, as you havent connected to the system yet. Therefore theoretical vs actual.

        • Hamish O

          Right, that does make sense, it could look something like this:

          Balance: $3.50 (top-up to $63.50 pending)

          • Steve D

            But the computer system has no way of knowing that the balance on the card is $3.50. It doesn’t even know whether or not the top-up has been applied yet, let alone what other top-ups, debits and penalty fares have been applied.

          • Hamish O

            That’s true, it probably is better just to leave it as ‘last known balance’.

  • will

    My experience with the new system to date has been nothing short of a shambles. I’m at 72 hours+ and still waiting for the top up to appear on my card. Not to mention the lack of clarity of information about monthly passes – I learned that they are not available online yet after I made the top up! AT continue to punish those who are the regular users of the system. And don’t get me started on the ticket checkers that are positioned at the Britomart platform lifts – this all just feels like we got the budget version of the ticketing system, when it could have been so much better.

  • Chris Randal

    Pity about the redundant comma in the first sentence.

  • This is bollocks. I bought a ticket on Sunday, went online and registered my card and and (allegedly) topped up $20 online that afternoon. My credit card statement shows the payment was made on the 28th and processed on the 29th. It’s now Thursday and the balance on the website is still -$3.00 (from using the card one time on a $0 balance) – way over the “maximum” 72 hour processing window. I emailed Hop last night and was told:
    “The online balance will not display the top up until the next time a card is presented to a device (i.e. Tagging on or off; checking a balance on a ticketing machine). This is when the funds will be loaded onto your card.”
    So … I drove to the train station, just to put my card in the machine to see whether my balance had been credited. It still hasn’t.

    • Right, FINALLY sorted it. Apparently if I want my balance transferred to my card I need to tag on – so the balance will be ‘incomplete’ until you tag on again. Which, reading all of this, kinda makes sense now, but it would be REALLY helpful if this information was actually somewhere really clear on the website because as it stands at the moment it is very confusing, and people will wonder where their money has disappeared to.

      • Also, to sort this out, I had to drive to a train station, tag on and then tag off again, having no actual intention to take the train tonight.

        • Steve D

          Well, what’s the point of having the balance on the card until you next need to tag on anyway? Doesn’t matter how long it takes if you’re not going to use it.

          • Hamish O

            The problem is you can never be sure that AT has updated their database and that your top-up will be applied when you tag on. If people were to know it took a maximum of 15 minutes for rail and ferry they could be confident. 72 hours is too long.

          • Steve D

            Oh yeah, the 72 hours thing is ridiculous. Even if the tag posts getting updated by a guy who drives around all the stations with a pile of floppy disks, it shouldn’t take more than one full day.

          • Hamish O

            Floppy disks is being too generous. This is more realistic! :-)

          • The point is, without tagging on, I have no actual idea whether the money I have credited onto my account has actually ended up on my card, almost a week later …

  • Yeah, I just realised that bit. But it has to be transferred to the back-end somehow so that you can do balance checks online, right?

    • Yes the transactions are transferred to the back end and the machines are designed to work off line for up to 7 days but the issue is for when the buses come on stream if they only go back to the depot once a day etc.

  • Harry McDonald

    I applied for a free AT card on line. I got an email on 25th October stating my card had been posted to me. It is now 1st November and I still haven’t got it.

  • Steve D

    It did say it would take 3-5 working days. Which would be tomorrow.

  • Cameron

    If I get this right, a very possible situation could arise as follows:
    * I have an auto-topup set to add $50 when my balance falls below $10 (seems reasonable…);
    * I use my card in the morning to get to work and my balance of above $10 now falls below $10 so the auto-topup kicks in & adds $50;
    * due to the “up to 72 hr delay”,or the might “show next morning” features, my balance on my card doesn’t update;
    * I choose to meet a friend for lunch and use my card, balance is now really close to $0;
    * I catch the train back to work and the balance goes negative;
    * I use my card to get home… oh, I can’t without topping up.

    & if I topup at a machine it’ll cost me 25c for the privilege. Yet, my card should have almost $50 on it. Bloody brilliant!

    • Cameron

      This will be even worse when buses come into play. If I happen to use a bus in the morning that hasn’t updated (didn’t go to the depot) then I won’t be able to use the card, and no machines to topup on the buses (I assume) & I don’t tend to carry cash. Again, bloody brilliant!

    • Hamish O

      I think the auto top-up parameters will be stored on your card to avoid this situation. If that’s true however. I don’t see what stops people from cancelling their credit card and letting the machine give them a free top up, so maybe I’m wrong. If I am you will just have to set your top up value at more than $10 to be safe.

    • Raewyn

      Hi check that the monies have actually debited to your nominated auto top up account. I have an issue in that I also have an auto top up. Monies put on card (thank you Auckland Transport) but have now been advised that they can’t process the debit to my account as the bank will not permit. I have check my account and no direct debit has been initiated by Auckland Transport (this has been confirmed by my bank). I raised this issue with Auckalnd Transport 12/11, 13/11 14/11 and again 15/11. My card now is blocked from being able to be topped up and I have been given no assurance that the issue will be sorted by next Monday. If they had advised that there was an issue with auto top up I would not have used this option.

  • Chris Randal

    Let’s face it this whole process has been completely mismanaged and those in charge should resign.

    Try calling the fraud squad, or the Herald or Campbell Live..

  • One little feature I have learned about that hasn’t been mentioned before is how the system treats monthly passes. If you have a monthly pass set to auto renew it will do so when the pass runs out but the new monthly pass won’t kick in until you swipe your card next so if your pass runs out on a Friday and you don’t use the trains again till Monday the new monthly pass will start from that date.

    • Hamish O

      That’s nice, as it means you don’t have to remember to cancel your renewal before you go away on holiday. Of course fare caps will be a nicer solution.

      Did you learn anything else interesting at your meeting?

      • Yep exactly so if it expires as you go on your Christmas holidays you don’t have to worry about it.
        A number of things, not sure how much of it I can say but some of the things that I know I can.

        The child concession is based of the holders DOB so after they turn 17 it automatically rolls off unless another concession is loaded e.g. school/tertiary.
        Gold card concession loaded on a card will charge if used before 9am but be free if after 9

        • Hamish O

          What if your monthly expires a week or so before you go on holiday? Will you easily be able to put the renewal on hold, or will you be forced to pay cash fares for that week?

          Yep, I already knew that about the concessions, but I think you’ll find it’s 16 not 17.With Snapper HOP though you could do it online by uploading a picture of your MAXX ID card. Now it seems you have to go to one of the AT service centres.

          That stuff about the gold card concession is great too, it could only be better if all Auckland gold card holders got sent a new card with HOP embedded into it.

          Otherwise I’m sure Lester Levy would appreciate you helping AT be more ‘open and customer focussed’ by giving out information. :-) :-) :-)

  • Gian

    i was in London in 2006. I could speak very little English and I was most of the time stoned. Still I managed to get an oyster card to go around. It was quick, easy, fast and 6 years ago. I can’t believe how this hop thing is going on.

  • Luke C

    If the buses do have Wi-fi I assume that means its possible for major bus interchanges to be gated, i.e. Northern Busway stations, Panmure etc. A small gated section at Britomart would be great to speed up boarding too. Not sure if there is space where buses are to stop, but would be useful.
    Over the next few years should be big push to get as many as possible on AT HOP. Hopefully HOP fares are frozen for 5 years, with 10%+ increases on non HOP fares.
    Having a Super Gold version would be great to make things easy to use for elderly.
    Another good thing would be making it easy for visitors to get one. I know I get an Oyster even if I’m in London for a day or 2, as only 5 pound deposit, and can get this back and any money left without penalty when you leave. So user friendly!

  • Mr Anderson

    Just registered my AT HOP card for the first time and OH MY GOD what a painful process.

    1) The system said that my email was already registered (presumably with the SNOP card) but I couldn’t add my AT HOP card when logged in with my existing email address. So needed to set up and entirely new email address just to set up a profile with the AT HOP card.

    2) After finally logging in (think I entered my address about 4 times to get this far) go to top up and then get some weird “exception, null” error message. Eventually this sorts itself out.

    3) Go to top up and it asks me to set the date I want the auto-topup to expire and then it throws a mental about getting the date format right. Because – get this – the date format generated when you click on the calendar puts the month before the day whereas the system itself needs the day before the month.

    4) Set up auto-topup but isn’t doesn’t top anything up straight away so need to do a first time topup. Then see that this might not become active for up to 72 hours.

    Amateur, Auckland Transport. Embarrassingly amateur.

    • bbc

      All I received are error messages when attempting to top up my card, I was able to add a credit card but have had no success doing anything in regards to actually getting any money on the thing. This is an extremely half-baked poorly designed website and backend.

      • bbc

        Ad infinitum

        Sorry, an error occured while processing your request.

        Sorry, your request could not be processed. Please try again. If the Error persists please contact Customer Support. Quote Error: XERR1065

    • Sandy

      Same problem :( it’s creepy

  • Chris

    Annoyed to still see a number of people still paying onboard the train, but even worse to see so many people not paying. Just wondering, I assume that 10 trips are clipped at the manual gate before people board? With no revenue protection staff onboard, and staff relying on the honesty of the passengers, anyone can get a free ride at the moment (yes, even Britomart Station has a loophole). Get it sorted AT!

    • Hamish O

      The 10 trips are an issue because people who don’t travel via Newmarket or Britomart won’t regularly have them clipped. I think in a few weeks AT will stop accepting them though.

    • Peter M

      If they never get clipped then people will be able to keep using them forever!

    • junD

      Chris, you can never blame these people. These could be one-off travellers that (1) couldn’t be bothered to take AT Hop cards or (2) people who normally pay cash but machines in the new stations are not working. This is currently the case in Orakei station since Monday which is rather frustrating to some travellers.

  • ejtma2003

    The whole system is a shambles, the website simply doesn’t function, the log in screen gives an error message once you log in, Like many others I registered my card on Saturday and then topped up on Sunday the payment was processed from my card that day.

    By Wednesday the top up was still not showing, I called the call centre and got some idiot who couldn’t explain what was going on, and only spoke broken English at best. The card was used Wednesday afternoon, and the top up appeared on Thursday, not after the use of the card (we checked on Wednesday night).

    AT need to sort this out, it is frankly embarrassing, and they will end up losing users if they continue to make it so hard, it is clear the whole system was not tested properly.

    I would almost put it up there with the cock up of the opening night of the Rugby “world” Cup

  • I am glad I am not the only person who is constantly getting weird errors when h logs in. (The log in appears to actually work, but it still throws up an error.) This is embarrassingly amateur-ish for a new system – isn’t anyone actually checking this stuff?

  • Mrs B

    I’m very unimpressed. Purchased my card on Wednesday, immediately registered and set up an auto-top up (not the most intuitive process – who would think that the “change” button is also the “set up” button”). Two days later no charge to my credit card and $0 balance showing on my online account. I normally use the ferry but need to use the train tonight, so I called their call centre, to be told that auto topup is not working, they have no way of telling me whether the transaction that was loaded the other day will or won’t be charged, no idea when it will be working, and “there will probably be something in the newspapers when it’s working”.

  • Mrs B

    See my comments below – was told this morning that auto topup is not working. How hard would it be to disable that part of the website until it’s working.

  • Cameron

    I just checked my card this morning after doing an online topup yesterday arvo. No money on the card (luckily I still have a couple of trips on my paper pass) and the card shows as “Not registered” yet I registered it last week & it’s associated with my account online. Bizarre. Will ring the call centre soon, and update.

    • Cameron

      So the lady at the call centre suggested tagging on, waiting a minute, then tagging off. There’s a small window where it isn’t charged. The balance should be updated then.

      She’s also filed an issue regarding the “not registered” thing, as the card has clearly been registered to my account.

      • Hamish O

        FYI you get 20 minutes before you are charged, and if you try to do it before a minute has passed it says something like ‘you have already tagged on’.

        • Steve D

          20 minutes is a bit stingy. Especially when trains are an hour apart on the weekend, and routinely get delayed by 10 minutes or more.

          • Hamish O

            AT will probably refund your penalty if you ask nicely. Any longer than 20 minutes and you could make a quick return trip for free.

      • Cameron

        So Friday I tagged on & off after waiting a bit & the balance has shown up correctly… yay! And the auto-topup is registered correctly as well now.

        Unrelated, I did get an email from the support team saying that ordering cards online isn’t ready yet. For something that’s been up & running *cough* for 2 weeks, that’s pretty crap.

  • Roycienator

    Welcome to the world of smart card ticketing systems Auckland!

    Melbourne’s myki system was wrought with similar bugs and only got online top-ups sorted out a couple of months ago… Well when i say sorted, i mean a two hourly turnaround for online top-ups to be transferred to your card. This took 2.5 years to be released after the system was launched.
    I did some research and I couldnt find any PT smart card systems that support instant online top-ups. Most require at least 15-30 min to allow the info to filter to the cards. Hopefully Thales & AT hear your cries of sanity and look into improving the speed of the data transfer sooner than Melbourne did. Needless to say, myki is still being rolled out here and won’t be fully operational until some time early next year.

    I remember seeing a Vic Govt presentation which stated that smart card ticketing systems generally take 5 years to get fully integrated into society and are deemed flawed up to this point. I wonder if AT or NZTA have a similar presentation or paper???

  • Mrs B

    This just keeps getting funnier. I went to the customer service desk at lunchtime, and the guy took me down to the train station, tagged me on and then off again – it seems the auto top up is indeed working! I have a full credit on my hop card that has not yet been charged to my credit card. Maybe it won’t ever…

  • Bash

    Well I have an interesting issue, I topped up online on Monday, its Friday now and Im still at 0 dollars…UM!!!

    • Hamish O

      Are you checking your balance at a ticket machine, a fare gate/post or online. If it’s online or at a machine you will need to tag on before your top up can be applied.

  • Stu Donovan

    I just wanted to balance the negative comments on here by saying that:
    1. My AT HOP card arrived very soon after I had ordered it;
    2. I found the registration and top-up process relatively straight-forward and intuitive; and
    3. The website management system worked seamlessly on my Chrome browser.

    Maybe I’m just lucky.

    But when I read about the ongoing integrated ticketing sagas that have unfolded in both Sydney and Melbourne then I start to wonder whether AT has actually done fairly well with the HOP roll-out (given the circumstances under which it has occurred, i.e. SNOP)?

    • Steve D

      Seconded.

      Having gone through Wellington’s Snapper launch four years ago I’ve got to say the AT HOP launch is miles better.

      * It charges the correct amount
      * It takes automated credit card topups
      * I can top up at the place where I board the service for which the card is used, rather than playing “hunt the correct dairy”
      * I can see a history of my transactions
      * It doesn’t take all week to tag on and off

      I got my card last night and put $20 on at the station this morning to tide me over until the auto top-up kicked in. Sure, that cost 25 cents, but I only have to do it once, and it was a pretty small price to pay to watch the fare gates spring open for me at Britomart for the first time, and think for a moment that our public transportation might just have a pretty good future ahead of it.

      People love to moan, because they notice the things that go wrong, not all the things that go right.

      • Hamish O

        * I can top up at the place where I board the service for which the card is used, rather than playing “hunt the correct dairy”

        In Snappers defence I think that is the difference between train and bus not Snapper or AT Hop.

      • Hamish

        I’ve also had no problems.

        I purchased my card at New Lynn, added funds at a top up machine.

        The online registration went ok, and I added further funds which appeared the next morning when I tagged on.

        The way online top ups are applied to the card has not been explained well by AT, this would be the main failing in my mind.

    • Agreed, had no problems and works perfectly. Much better roll-out than other cities overseas especially given the SNOP debacle. However in saying that we did expect them to learn from overseas experience when rolling it out, not trying to take away from the job they have done

  • Chris

    Today I saw a cyclist hop off the train at Takanini, but he accidently left his AT HOP on the train. A teenager (around my age) who was sitting opposite him waited till the doors closed before quickly putting the card in his back pocket. Saw the cyclist helplessly standing at the tag post searching his pockets. When the train got to Papakura I asked the guy if he had picked it up, but he tried to plead his innocence although I saw what had happened and could easily tell that he was lying. Didn’t want to make too much of a fuss of it but I hope that the cyclist was able to cancel the card before the twat gets a free ride.

    Only my second day on the train with the new system. :(

  • I registered 2 cards on the phone under my name,I topped them both up went for a trip.2 hours later logged into my account,with my email address and could only get access to one card.It showed my new balance after trip.But I could not get access to 2nd card no matter what links I tried. :(

    • Liz

      How suprising I just rang to see why i could not see my transaction on line and was told that with the new at hop card this service is not available yet Why is beyond me as if you have to register on line they have your details and you should then be able to see your account Typical bureaucracy

  • Troy

    Topping up online really doesn’t seem worth it really, I had to physically take in a bank statement to prove that I purchased a topic online over72 hours prior, which then had to be submitted to their office to look at.

    From that point, when it’s confirmed… They give you a number which you have to take into a customer service desk to actually get your top up credited.

    Teething issues im sure..

    With this, I was unable to use my card straight away, since it says online and all that 10passes will still be used up till the date, one would think you could use up the last of the clips while you wait for the system to come right. However seems the staff at britomart only accept paper tickets. The fact that I was refused the ability to use clips left over, yet I’m sitting on the train watching people get clipped still on 10 passes is just astonishing.

    None the less, using the clips isn’t really worth the risk of being late.

  • Liz

    The fee for a cash top up is a rip off It is actual money being used not a bank card However after waiting in line for 20 minutes at the only cash top up machine at Britomart (the other one was “out of order” I finally was able to put money onto my card Yesterday I missed my train because of the number of people wanting to use the 3 machines at Britomart Surely the powers that be must have realised that 3 machines is simply not enough I wait in hope for more to be installed but am not holding my breath

  • TimR

    Anyone else been double-charged by AT?

    Got an email saying they had tried, but failed to debit my account, and they would try again. Unfortunately they’ve gone overboard, debited twice and there is no easy way to fix this it seems.Their contact channels seem to take days to respond.

    Any tips?

  • Greg N

    There is a slight gotcha with the Auto-top with AT HOP card that hit me yesterday.

    Here’s a synopsis:

    Card had $13 balance on it, Auto top level is $30 once card gets under $9.
    .
    Went 1 stage yesterday, when I tagged off, reader at Brotomart showed my balance had “jumped” by over $30 this indicated auto-top had happened.

    Rang AT to find out why since can’t see my transactions online but since I only went 1 stage card shouldn’t have dropped below the $9 level to trigger it..

    AT operator told me that when I tagged on system at Newmarket it “pinged” my card $5, which triggered auto-top up as balance dropped from $13 to below $9 as a result,
    This meant card had some $38 on it by the time I tagged off at Britomart.

    When I tagged off (1 stage later, at Britomart), HOP refunded me the difference from my actual trip cost and the $5 it estimated, bringing my balance back up by about $3.50 to about $41.50

    So be aware that the top level is not as hard and fast as you think it is – its at least $5 higher than the value you set due to the $5 automatic charge.

    I assume that the $5 automatic amount is a hangover from the $5 HOP card specials they were selling in November?
    So that all $5 HOP cards automatically lose the balance as soon as they’re used the first time?

  • 72 hours? I’d be lucky. I can’t top-up online at all, even though I’ve registered my card and linked it to credit card. “Help” line says it’s a technical problem. No shit sherlock. ETA on resolution – 10 days. What a joke. Worst of the public and private sectors combined.

    • Sandy

      Fudu system …. Cheep
      Online – feature is ” like u can’t go to machine for recharge and do it online”
      So u can use ur card for the next daydream just after buss for collage …
      If it dosent give till 1-2 days or till when u don’t go to machine ….
      So why the he’ll this online system made for …

  • Carl B

    Do not ever setup an auto top up, I changed Banks and the auto top up therefore failed to go through – they blocked the card, I lost $26 credit and I now have to buy a new card @ $10 (once blocked it can’t be unblocked) – what rubbish and a rip off to boot, theft of $26 credit, I should lay theft charges.

  • louw swart

    I saw during card registration that the system interacts with Sharepoint in the back-end (the word sharepoint was actually part of a forward URL), so I’m not surprised it is as useless as it is. I topped up this past Sunday and until I swipe again somewhere, the balance will probably sit under Pending Transactions. Too scared to take the chance, cause I may then still have to buy a ticket if it fails, and miss the ferry, as happened on Sunday. The website is a tragedy – the session cookie for instance seems to not be deleted when you log out (with a pop-up – really? Banks are not even that paranoid) which means you cannot log in again for at least 30mins (unless you go delete it, that is). All in all, it feels a bit amateur.

  • Jonnopissedofftraveller

    IM SERIOUSLY PISSED OFF, i topped up yesterday and because my card is $0.50c in debit the system cant apply my top up, Your staff want me to walk to a shop to pay the 50c. If i have to go to a shop ill be smashing windows.

  • Sanz

    When do they expire? I use mine for summer school only Jan – mid Feb. Suddenly I can’t log in or anything. It says it expired, I last used it in Feb, there is money onit

  • When do the cards expire? I use mine for summer school only Jan – mid Feb. Suddenly I can’t log in or anything. It says it expired, I last used it in Feb, there is money on it and I need it again in two weeks. Can someodne help?

  • guuggu

    this is pretty poor bullshit, customer-fuck off system. so i top up online for 10$ and then only get 9.75$ in 72 hours??? Auckland Transport lives in 1980s…

  • Moi

    Did I gather somewhere it’s a Thales system? They do defence work too- I hope never to have to rely on that.

  • Emma

    my experience with AT hop has been frankly pretty damn well awful.

    first: sending my card to the wrong address – how is there an excuse for this? I fill out the boxes with all my correct info and they just CHANGE the suburb just for lols?

    second: finding out there is a charge for topping up, and since im topping up each journey before hand due to my pathetic student income, i’m not really saving money here? AT surely aren’t loosing out or they wouldn’t be providing discount, we all know they make a heap of money on fining people for overstaying 5 mins in a library car park…

    Third: I topped up at 12 noon on Friday, it’s 12 noon Monday and still no balance and I am unable to use the card on the bus.

    And the poor service provided when there is a problem is just shocking, the girl i spoke to in the Botany help center seemed completely uninterested and unwilling to help. I waited over a month to have my card sorted.
    Come on AT, if you want this system to work, customer service and satisfaction should be top of your list.

    • Yes you are saving money, the hop discount is much greater than the top up fee.

      Have you tagged the card since you topped up, they only go through when you tag on the next time. Do note that the balance doesn’t appear online until you tag the card and it can reconcile the data on the website with the data on the card.

    • bbc

      @Emma – why don’t you simply set-up an Auto Top-up on your card? Then you don’t pay any fees and it’s all done automatically.

  • Marns

    This system sucks major especially when you have to go in with your childs school id to get a concession to prove their age (16) and there are only a few places you can go into especially when you live about 40 mins away. Fighting traffic and finding parks….the card cancelled on my child only to find out it was the transport machine and there was still $30.00 on it that “I’m sorry that you lost your money but there is nothing we could do about it because you can’t prove it” My reply was I couldn’t get on your darn website as it kept locking me out telling me I had to go to one of the main centres….. which I was trying to get into ahhhhhhhhhhhhh…..Suck suck suck……..Hong Kong train systems have this down packed fantastic payment scheme love it…..Octopus system (NZ copy sucks)!!!!!!!!

    • bbc

      For starters the Thales system is not a ‘NZ copy’ and secondly I’m sure if you spent time on some Hong Kong forums you’d find plenty of people complaining about that card too. I’m not saying either one is better, or less error prone than the other, simply that your difficulties do a shitty system make. I for one have never had a single problem with the AT HOP card.

      Also, not sure why you didn’t just catch the train into Britomart rather than ‘fighting traffic and finding parks’ just sayin.

    • With Octopus you also need photo ID to load a concession, and it’s exactly the same if you lose an unregistered card.

      How would you expect them to magically know your child’s age on an anonymous card?

    • While I now agree the process to get a child concession loaded is a little onerous, I’m struggling to understand this sentence:

      “the card cancelled on my child only to find out it was the transport machine and there was still $30.00 on it that”

      How did the card get cancelled? What do you mean by “transport machine”?

      And why did you drive if it involved fighting traffic and finding a park? Would a bus or train not have been easier? It was to a public transport centre, after all.

      • Given there are service centres in Papakura, Botany, New Lynn and Constellation I’m having a hard time working out where forty minutes away could be without leaving Auckland!

        • Maybe she included time to hunt for a carpark. Unless you’re prepared to walk two minutes to/from a park further away, circling the block for a close by carpark can take 10+ minutes.

    • Salad

      For a secondary school concession (which is different from a child concession) the reason the CSC needs to sight their student ID is not to check their age but to check that they are indeed a secondary student.

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