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HOP use grows

Almost all of the major bus operators are now on HOP with only the Waiheke Bus Company (4th March) and Airporter (unannounced) left to go. I have also heard that the Airbus will change over but there is no timeframe for that yet.

With that in mind a few days ago I casually asked Auckland Transport how many people were now using HOP. Today they announced

Aucklanders are now travelling on more than 200,000 AT HOP cards.

AT HOP is a smart-card which can be used for travel on trains and ferries and it is now rolling out to buses across the region.

Auckland Transport has been progressively introducing the system across different transport modes and a multitude of operators.

AT’s chief operations officer Greg Edmonds says the 200,000 card milestone comes with 95 per cent of the roll-out – due for the end of March – completed.

Mr Edmonds says that under the second phase of the integrated ticketing programme, a new Fares Policy will be developed. This will involve a review of fare structures (e.g. stage-based, zonal, distance-based), investigation of different fare products and passes, and pricing levels.

The system was introduced on Howick and Eastern Bus services last weekend (February 16), and will be followed by services on Waiheke.

For more information call Auckland Transport on 09-3664467 or go to: www.ATHOP.co.nz

Fast facts:

  • On an average weekday some 236,000 trips are taken on public transport in the region.
  • More than 3 million trips each month are made using the AT HOP card.
  • On an average weekday buses in Auckland travel some 164,000 km – the equivalent of flying from Auckland to London nine times.

It’s good to hear that so many cards are now out there in the wild and knowing that all PT services are using a single card is something that will hopefully lead to quite a few more people picking one up however it does account for less than 15% of the overall Auckland population so there’s still quite some way to go yet before it’s seen as a mainstream thing. As pointed out in the comments on the post yesterday about the HOP scam warning, there are probably a heap of people out there who probably want one and AT need to make it as easy as possible to be able to get cards.

In my view AT really need to be aiming to get the card in the hands of at least four times that number of people (or more). I suspect that people seeing the card in their wallet might be something that will remind them of the PT options that are available (assuming they are decent). One area I would love AT to progress on this front is to roll out HOP to carparks around the city. It would save people having to line up at ticket machines to pay and help get the card into more people’s hands.

Of course a big thing that does need to be sorted next is to get proper integrated fares sorted out.  I understand AT are working on it so hopefully it’s something we will hear more about soon.

76 comments to HOP use grows

  • Christopher T

    A fascinating occurrence this afternoon: ticket inspectors at Avondale station, checking Avondale College students; pretty normal stuff. Observed the usual school kid attempts to deceive, but the strangest sight of all was the little gathering of fifty or so students on the adjacent upper playground of Avondale Primary School, waiting for the inspectors to depart so they could catch their train, gratis.

    • DavidO

      In the morning rush on the western line kids avoided paying before HOP came along too — the trains were so busy at that time that ticket inspectors never got to you!

      I still think that not having barriers on every station is insane. It makes no sense at all, in a country without a well established ethic of paying fares even if there is no inspection in place—Switzerland, Germany, Denmark etc. (AND serious fines for infringements, see e.g. http://www.sbb.ch/en/station-services/services/sbb-customer-service/reisen-ohne-gueltigen-fahrausweis/allgemeine-informationen.html, and if the internet is to believed [hmmm] you get a criminal record for falling foul of this three times).

      Failing installation of many more gates, AT need many more inspectors… but that would be missing out on an opportunity to save money. Anyone who knows… do the economics really mean that it is not worth either paying more inspectors or installing more gates?

      Another perspective might say that school kids should travel free… to build a bigger long term customer base…

      • Problem with gating is it does introduce both an capital and opex cost. I don’t think they’re needed at each and every station and gating the key ones should eliminate most evasion. Manukau will be gated when it’s finished in a few months time and I understand New Lynn will be next after that (don’t know when). I also hear there are plans to gate Henderson and Grafton.

        • Bryce P

          I walked right past the Henderson tag posts yesterday and forgot to tag off. Very easy to do when distracted and they don’t exactly stand out.

        • Make It Go

          Mt Albert is also on the list to be gated – after Henderson and Grafton are done.

        • Steve D

          Gating Grafton would be an ambitious project! Four separate entrances, three of them pretty much straight from the street to the platform. I assume the concourse would be the larger area on the West side of Park Road – but even then the ticket machines would have to be pretty much on the footpath to have room for gates before you get to the lift. It’d also cost a fortune to man the gates on all four entrances, if there’s even room for that.

          The other option would be gates on the platforms, Britomart-style: but it’d be awfully cramped down there.

        • Martin W.

          I agree with Matt, gating everything is too expensive, better getting the law right. So far if the inspectors catch someone there are no consequences. I even experienced that one guy refused to get of the train. So hefty fines are the only way to go, because that give the inspectors finally “teeth and claws”. So government is called.

        • Brendan

          In Melbourne and Athens they don’t have many gates.

          In Melbourne, Fines for fare evading are $212 for adults and $72 for children under 18.
          In Athens, the fine is 60 times the price of the ticket. Also, Ticket inspectors do not wear a specific uniform but will have a clearly visible identity badge.

          • David B

            You know what, i’d rather let kids go free on public transport. As Matt says, gating will deal with most evasion over time, and a gate at just one end of the trip gets you most of the compliance benefits.

          • Prague has zero gates and lots of very aggressive inspectors. It also has the most used Metro per capita in the world. I got busted quite a few times and regularly asked for my ticket. In my opinion that is the best system. ID cards do make it easier as everyone has a way of proving their ID and it is illegal not to carry it.

            I guess the other point is that an annual travel pass in Prague is the equivalent of $250 per year (Metro, trams, buses), so why bother evading fares?

          • With the quality of cameras in modern smart phones, and the current state of facial-recognition technology, it’s entirely feasible to outfit ticket inspectors with smart phones that contain a constantly-updated database of photographs of every person caught for fare evasion. Make it a criminal offence to provide false details to a ticket inspector, and then use the database to catch people who have provided false details in the past. Have the inspector call the cops to meet the train (generally no issue with availability of police officers during the morning and evening transport peaks), and you’ve now taken care of people giving false details without having to go down the much-reviled route of mandatory national ID cards.

      • Well, let’s say those (let’s call it 50) pupils each avoided a $0.90 one-stage fare. That’s $45 from that group in the afternoon, and probably the same in the morning. $90. That’d pay for four hours of a “loss prevention officer” at $22.50/hr (probably generous), which is not bad going. And the salutary effect on general honesty of catching those pupils regularly would mean the recovered revenue was actually higher. Multiply it by other schools in the area whose pupils get wind of things…

        What should have been done after the inspectors left was to arrange additional inspectors to be on each of the next four trains through that station, to catch precisely that kind of behaviour.

        Since HOP rolled out to trains, I think I’ve had my ticket inspected on maybe 5% of journeys (admittedly a very small sample), one of which was a daytime trip out of Britomart just before Christmas. I didn’t see the point in having revenue officers checking tickets out of a gated station, it would have made more sense to have them switching services at (in this case) Orakei so as to always be going between un-gated stations.

        • Dan

          The cost of employing a person is usually about twice their wage, so your “loss prevention officer” is likely to cost more like $40/hr.

          • Tom

            Really? How did you get to that number? Even if we calculate in kiwisaver and a cheapo high-vis vest, where does the extra 95% of the overhead for a guard come from?

          • An office worker, yes. Someone who spends most of their time out and about the city, sharing a desk at the start and end of a shift to fill in paperwork, no, not so much.

          • If we accept the maths (which I don’t), that’s still two hours of a day fully covered from that group’s fares, never mind the wider effects of people regularly being caught for evasion.
            Toss in some large, on-the-spot, criminally-enforced fines, and an LPO could pay their annual salary with a couple of weeks of solid effort.

      • exaucklanderinsydney

        Gating every single station is not practical, nor necessary but I do believe they should be gating all the major stations which would catch the majority of trips.

          • nonsense

            That is what the employee costs but since we have to make money from everything than it is usually twice. My company charges almost 3 times for my services. The clients think I am getting rich.

          • If you work in some kind of professional services, yes, the margin can be quite staggering. When I worked for a large consultancy firm my salary was somewhere around about 20% of what the rate card said my work could be billed at. Admittedly work was normally discounted, sometimes as far as 50% and at times even more with partner approval, but there can still be an enormous disconnect between what the employee gets, what the employee costs the company, and what the company charges for the employee.

            That doesn’t, however, apply to an employee who works solely for their employer conducting their employer’s direct business. Like, say, a railway ticket inspector.

          • Harvey Specter

            Correct but on top of hourly rate, you do have to factor in holiday pay, acc, sick leave, recruiting and training costs, supervision costs. Double might be too much but an extra 50% at least.

    • S

      Also interesting to consider: why are we making schoolkids pay for transport to and from school? Get beyond any grumpiness at teenage cheekiness and think about what schools are actually for.

      Schools should issue combined student ID / HOP cards. AT should make trips between the hours of 7 – 8:30 am and 3 – 4:30 pm free for them, and two things will happen: kids who cannot always afford the commute to school (which is a real problem at some schools in Auckland) will be able to receive an education, and the HOP card rollout will go that much faster.

      • Yes. More important that we get accurate data on use and remove any barrier to getting kids to school than chase them for funds at no small cost. Kids getting safely to school and not being driven is a social good that we should be running towards providing.

  • Peter

    Still lots of issues though, lack of retailers vs snapper, lack of nfc live balance check and top up on the go, ticket Machines faulty 1/4 of the time at more remote train stations, slow response to overcharge disputes vs snapper, stupid $10 minimum top up vs snappers any amount, lack low balance warning vs snapper and more… until at least some of these issues are fixed I still would of preferred snapper but the multi-operator support is the big plus.

    • Bryce P

      Hmm. I’ve just set our cards up on auto-pay from our bank account. They’ll auto top up once it reaches $5 and you can choose the top up amount. Solves having to use ticket machines as well. You can even order a HOP card online. How easy is that?

      • Peter

        I am aware of auto topups but as a student that isn’t viable for me I get paid less than I have to pay rent each week so I must go to my place of study reliant on small to pups and maybe the occasional larger top up when I don’t have utility bill at final notice.

  • I agree with everything Peter has said – About the only thing that has been good is the multi-operator part, the lack of retailers months after intro, low balance warning being around $2 instead of $12, no all day tickets such as Discovery after 28/2 are just some of my gripes with the system

  • exaucklanderinsydney

    Need to give it time. The roll out seems to be going very well (despite what locals in Auckland may think). Here in Sydney, the Opal card roll out is appalling and is going along at a snails pace. Auckland has done it all relatively fast. Once integrated fares come on board, I’m sure usage will sky rocket.

    Just with the article though, I kinda find the over number of cards handed out as being useless information. Is that 200k actively used cards, does the include dormant cards etc? What would have been more useful is what percentage of all trips (on services that have converted) are being paid with HOP vs Cash.

  • Anthony

    I have two hop cards (council? error), neither of which have been used.
    Having to wait up to 72 hours for your online top up to become active and the requirement for tagging on within 60 days is ridiculous.
    These conditions have prevented me from putting any money on the cards.
    It should be 5 minutes and a year.
    At the moment I only use the bus if it’s raining heavily. Obviously I don’t know how heavy the rain will be until it’s actually time to leave the house.
    Used to be able to top up the old Urban Express card on the bus, can’t do that either.
    End up paying cash each time rather than topping up once which wastes more time for everyone.
    I catch the bus far less than I used to.

    • You don’t have to wait 72 hours, that is the worst case scenario which only happens if the first bus you try to use afterwards hasn’t been to a depot in three days. Like it says on the website if you top up before 10pm it’s there the next day.

      • SteveN

        Nick, you’ve got me intrigued: is data being uploaded/downloaded to/from the bus card reader when it’s in the depot? Surely they don’t load every card top up transaction to every bus (and train station) device, so it can it apply it to your card if you happen to board?

        • Tom

          I doubt that transactions are transferred. They probably upload the absolute amount on all registered cards.

          If we assume we need 4 bytes for a card ID, 2 bytes for the money amount and that everyone in Auckland has 2 HOP cards, that would only be 4B * 2B * 2 * 1500000 = 24MB. If the IDs are sequential then you can compress that at least to a factor of 5 so you are looking at a 5 MB upload. With 200k cards this comes out at 0.3 MB. I’m sure this isn’t a problem but the system is likely much smarter than that. It might be doing small updates (e.g. every 5 min) while the bus has a mobile signal to the mothership and the bulk upload is either a last resort and/or the morning pre-run routine.

          The 72 hour figure sounds like someone is covering their rear end with reinforced asbestos ;)

          • I’m not certain on the details and others here probably know better, but my understanding is the balance on the card is the master and is debited when you tag on and off and credited immediately when you top up at a machine or ticket office. Online top ups get broadcast out to all readers to credit the card balance when it is next used. On a small number of buses that only happens when they are on the depot wifi.

            Yes the 72 hours thing is an absolute worst case theoretical scenario as an arse covering exercise. Looks like the legal people demanded it and didn’t realise plenty of people will read it as “will always take 72 hours”.

          • Steve D

            They undoubtedly do upload all the live transaction amounts to every single bus, ferry and rail terminal: otherwise what would happen if you manually topped up (or caught a bus that didn’t have the transaction loaded yet), before the topup was applied? The balance wouldn’t reflect the ride you’d just made. Transactions are probably also easier to store than every card balance, since on a given day, most cards won’t get either an online topup or a penalty fare.

            They might update the terminals during the day, as well, but I’d be shocked if they didn’t bulk load every outstanding transaction to every terminal, every night (unless the bus isn’t at the depot).

            It’s not really a hard task, though. I don’t know the details of HOP, but it’s probably in the same general area as Snapper. Snapper’s bus terminals run a standard OS (Ubuntu) on standardish low-power PC hardware and I’m sure they just run a standard off-the-shelf relational database like PostgreSQL (or one of the many competitors). Anything you could possibly even buy new, circa 2008-2010, would easily be able to select a few rows from a million-row indexed table, on flash storage, in under a hundred milliseconds. Even if it’s some dinky $500 machine running off a bus battery.

            Let’s guesstimate some numbers. Being generous.

            You don’t use fancy compression, you use 8 byte integers for everything. Say 8 bytes each for card ID, transaction ID, balance amount, transaction amount, and transaction type, and 16 bytes for a checksum (why not): that’s 56 bytes per row.

            Even if you round it up to a hundred bytes per transaction (to include some indexes and overhead, and I’ve probably forgotten a couple of columns), assume a generous half a million transactions a day, that’s 50MB of storage and could sync in minutes if not seconds. You can’t even buy less than a gig of storage these days, in any format. And paying software developers is way more expensive than shelling out for hardware.

            As for syncing during the day: 3G connections are well over 1Mbps. Even syncing that whole 50MB database – a day’s worth of transactions for the whole city – would take under 10 minutes. If it trickles throughout the day as transations roll in and the bus moves in and out of coverage areas, it’s going to be barely noticeable little bursts of data.

          • Steve D

            I’m sure there’s hard parts to implementing the smart card system, but simply storing every transaction on every terminal does not seem like it would be one of those hard parts.

          • Peter

            top ups where instant via nfc on snapper, I don’t see why they can’t be on AT hop, though I don’t know a heck of a lot about nfc tags

          • Steve D

            The technology supports it, in principle.

            However, if they ever do get around to implementing NFC topups it’s more likely that they’ll cut out the middle man and just let you use your NFC phone as the Hop card: http://transportblog.co.nz/2012/04/30/hop-on-your-phone/

            In the meantime, the automatic online topups are completely instant – your card gets a topup the instant the balance gets too low, which is usable immediately. (The rules for the topup are stored on the card itself!) Your credit card gets charged later on. This also means that you can set it and forget it, and don’t have to worry about topping up manually.

  • John

    I think HOP really need weekly pass. We have some public holidays on Feb and April, monthly pass users may not use PT during those public holidays and waste money.

  • SteveN

    On the bus I notice the people who don’t use HOP are not travelling multi zone i.e. the 1 zone/intrazone hoppers are the worst offenders at paying cash. Travelling a shorter distance means they are of course the least affected by the bus being held up by the cash transactions, so don’t have the same “skin in the game” in processing a speedy transaction.

    One of the reasons will be the lack of HOP card retailers on the bus routes – e.g. on the Mount Eden route, there is a retailer in Mt Eden village, and at Britomart. Nothing further out, or in between. Surely supermarkets would be a good place to stock them? I realise you can buy them online and top them up online, but not everyone is internet savvy.

    The ticket printer is the slowest part of the cash transaction. Is the practice of issuing a paper ticket on buses really necessary? Do they ever have inspectors checking tickets, and can they tell where you boarded? Would love to see a “no change – drop your exact money (or greater) in the box” system.

    • Geogoose

      I remember having ticket inspectors enter a bus maybe twice in about 3 years back in the early 2000s.

      I’ve found the biggest cash users are generally those who travel off peak. On peak most are on Hop, at least on Dominion Road busses.

      • SteveN

        You must have your Dom Road riders better trained :)

        I don’t travel off peak, but most of the cash users on the Mount Eden route are those that board/disembark between the top of Symonds Street and Britomart. And I have one lady every day who pays cash from Three Kings to Mt Eden village. I almost feel like gifting her a HOP card to get her out of her cash habit, but I suspect she wouldn’t know how to top it up.

        • Geogoose

          I did take a 27something back from Britomart to Mt Eden after the latern festival the other day – was impressed by someone, who I can only describe as an Official (hi-vis vest, but don’t rememeber who they worked for), who got the 50% cash people to line up to pay the driver and funnelled the Hop users past in a second queue.

          Given the massive difference in loading time (10x? 20?) it was probably a good advertisement for the card.

          • Geogoose

            Ok, probably not 20x but it felt like forever.

          • Luke Christensen

            There was young AT guy hanging around all weekend making sure buses loaded efficiently, rushing around between different stops as problems developed. Defintely a great innovation from AT, and he did a great job. Was there everytime I went past over the course of the weekend, form mid morning for Nines and Eminem to late at night for lantern.

          • There was a guy at the St James stop in town for a few days last week during normal times. Getting people into the separate lines ( HOP & cash ) and also telling the drivers where to park and when to leave ( hard for the drivers to do during peak when people continuously arrive and multiple buses are there ).

            Seemed to be a good idea. I notice when I catch the the 27x buses from Britomart the passengers seem to have much less an idea about forming 2 lines etc than people catching the 25x and 26x buses to Dominion Rd.

          • RJ Y

            Sounds like Japan except without the stuffing part hahaha

      • harrymc

        The difference in price between cash and the card needs to be MUCH greater. In London the cash price on the bus is GBP2.40 and the Oyster price is GBP1.45; that’s huge. We should have a similar margin here. At the very least make the cash fare $2 instead of the stupid $1.90!

  • Jon Reeves

    And AT still need to remove the 25 cents top up “FEE/TAX” – remember this is PUBLIC TRANSPORT. We never had to pay a fee when buying 10 trip or monthlies before from the company, unless the bank imposed cheque fee was taken into consideration.

    AT HOP is not a money making devise, it is part of the system for ENCOURAGING use of public transport.

  • Don

    Given the costs involved in installing/operating turnstiles I can’t figure out why Pier One at the ferry terminal has been gated. Fullers have to count all passengers onto the ferries and ensure their passengers have also paid at the same time. This makes the ferries a very low evasion risk. The turnstiles would be of greater use at an ungated rail station. Does anyone have the usage figures on these.
    I have seen very few people use them.

    • Peter

      Gates are a waste of time unless everywhere is gated, with newmarket/brito if Ur stuck in gates your optimal choice would be to go to grafton or otherwise Remeruera or you could just be like this guy I saw the other day and jump the gates and run off and cuss at the transdev staff… not nice at all but yeah gates don’t do much at all…

      • Luke C

        umm no adding lots of Gates suboptimal though. Already with 2 gated stations probably capturing 50-60% of trips. Gates only needed at either destination or origin for them to be effective. Therefore gating the 10 highest patronage stations could probably get you to 90% of riders. Gating extra stations gives ever diminishing returns.

        • Peter

          Plenty of people don’t go to britomart though, and grafton is a very small walk to newmarket, gates don’t stop people transferring through these locations (train-to-train) either though, the other thing is, a gated destination prevents all forms of evasion to that station (other than going nuts and jumping the gate lol) but a gated origin with an un-gated destination means you can choose not to tag off and pay the possibly cheaper penalty fare (if 4+ stages). Gating every station and good security (security guards etc) is the only full-proof way of preventing fare evasion, but yeah the cost-benefit is low so you are right.

  • David B

    “Of course a big thing that does need to be sorted next is to get proper integrated fares sorted out. I understand AT are working on it so hopefully it’s something we will hear more about soon”

    Well said Matt! The HOP technology and rollout is going fairly well in my opinion, but users who are stuck with multi-mode trips are getting hammered by paying multiple fares and having to tag on/off mid trip.

    However there may be two quick fixes available that would help in the short term. First off, fix the zones so that everyone who is the same distance out from Britomart pays near enough the same fare, and second put in a maximum daily cap like I think Melbourne does so that public transport users are protected from fares mounting up. Job done!

    • Luke C

      there is actually a 50c discount when taking multipel trips. But pity AT haven’t told anyone about this, so no one knows about it. Should have been $1 too so then CBD transfer trips become free.

  • Harvey Specter

    I am still amazed at the amount of daily commuters that still pay cash everyday. They even know they are holding everyone up.

    With all buses now on HOP, they should do another marketing push. Drivers should have a few $20 cards (Say $5 card with $15 credit) which users can buy quickly.

    Then on the next price reset, the cash price has to increase, creating a larger differential, so with a marketing push, again more people move to the Hop card.

    • Good ideas, in addition I’d add:

      1. Make the difference between cash and HOP at least 50 cents per ride (even inner city zone). To reflect the 20+ second (flag fall) delay each cash payer imposes on the rest of the bus

      2. All fare discounts ( school, student, Gold card) must pay via HOP card or full price.

      3. Put some signs, lines on the floor of the doorway etc to tell people to make two lines. Many people still don’t know especially irregular riders who are more likely to pay cash. Once a couple of cash payers block the doorway then it can hold up 20 people with HOP cards.

    • Luke C

      Someone at the ticket lines in Britomart would be really handy. Could do the $20 solution as you propose above, or just direct people over to the quiet counters to get an AT HOP.
      The help desks should at least have a big ‘Get AT HOP here; sign.
      Have heard than express buses are going to go AT HOP only soon, which would be great.
      AT Britomart for the NEX people can use rear door AT HOP boarding, and thus bus boards very quickly, and cash payers have to wait for several buses. Not sure if the same happens at busway stations in the morning. Would be great to make peak NEX’s AT HOP only, all the stations have offices now, so they could eb set up to sell cash fares to those who didn’t have AT HOP.

    • On the NEX the drivers hand out a hop leaflet to anyone paying cash. Wouldn’t be surprised of the NEX goes cashless, particularly because you can buy a ticket at the station (might need a couple of machines at Britomart however).

      • Luke C

        NEX always seems to set the standard with bus services in Auckland. Same at special events, always extra buses parked up to handle the crowds, and marshalls on hand to help people.
        Wonder how much of this is Ritchies being a good operator, and how much is AT hoping their premier bus service runs well?
        NZ Bus don’t seem to bother with any of this stuff, only care about making money from advertising and property development.

    • conan

      The $20 Hop card is a no brainer, especially for the ‘$20 note for the $1.90 fare’ crowd. What is stopping this from happening from tomorrow?

      The higher cash fare thing needs to just be done, it’s got to be a decent amount so that all but tourists pay cash (and even then they buy a card after the first trip and realise the difference). At least a dollar if not double like it is in London.

      • Peter

        That’s mainly the banks fault for lack of $10 atms

      • Peter

        or you could even blame the buses, for lack of eftpos, buses should be equipt with mobile eftpos and allow top-ups onboard too. this would pretty much totally sort out people paying with $20… once or twice I had to buy a ticket with a $20 too, I had no other option other than to go to a shop and buy something (waste of money) to get smaller cash out or exchange my $20 for something smaller.

        • Steve D

          That would be even slower than cash. You could probably allow cash topups in round amounts ($10, $20) without slowing things down too much – Christchurch works like that – but EFTPOS is slow, slow, slow. Also, while it’s possible to get EFTPOS terminals that don’t require a live Internet connection, the banks charge a premium for that service.

          What the city needs is lots more of the unmanned topup machines, not just on rail platforms. Get rid of the topup fee for the unmanned kiosks, like Snapper do – albeit they only have half a dozen kiosks nationally. Then you’ve got a decent range of options for everyone.

          That said, auto-topup should work for most people with a credit card or bank account. It’s no more expensive than topping up manually – you’ve just got to make sure you have $10 in your account when the auto-topup happens, but you’re not actually spending more money, or having to do more accounting, than you would with a manual topup.

          The other thing would be increasing the difference between cash and HOP fares, at the very least rounding cash fares up to a figure that’s easier to make change from, $2 rather than $1.90 for a single stage, for example.

          • Sailor Boy

            That tgere isn’t a top up machine at uoa is ridiculous, someone needs to get sacked

          • Steve D

            For now, there’s a (manned) centre that you can top up at, right over the road at AUT. And while a machine at UofA might be a useful addition, the status quo of needing to walk across the street isn’t exactly ridiculous or sacking-worthy.

  • SteveN

    Totally agree re point 3, but many of the buses are just too narrow through the front entry. Even a “please stand to the left” sign would help.

    I’ve got quite bolshy now, and will push fairly hard to get past these people, or ask them loudly to move over to allow others through.

  • Ran Derson

    My observations:
    1. Gating at Henderson station will cut a lot of losses – many people board at Henderson and go to Ranui/Sturges and the ticket inspectors rarely travel past Henderson.
    2. Fare evasion would decrease with a bigger HOP discount – the ticket machines are very slow and some people (like a guy this morning) can’t complete the ticket transaction fast enough, and board without getting a ticket.
    3. Same effect when trains are more frequent – people won’t have to wait long for the next train.

  • Richard C

    Excuse my ignorance but who/what is NEX?

  • Unintended experiment: HOP card quite happy to have a ride in the washing machine, makes a change I guess, and no money got washed off.

    Related: Now have very clean card.

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