Auckland is the largest metropolitan city in New Zealand. With the development of the Auckland transport system, the city has gained one of the major cruise ship ports for New Zealand, Australia and
Find the best place to stay in Auckland and know easy and fast ways to get there from Auckland Airport. Learn how shuttles, buses, trains, ferry and taxis work in Auckland.
Are you planning to visit Auckland? Have you found how the Auckland transport system works?
Not yet? Then keep reading.
Auckland is something special for me because I had my first cruise to Australia from there.
In this article, you will find ways to save money and time by getting information about Auckland’s transport system.
Hotels in Auckland, New Zealand: The Best Hotels in the Best Areas
Auckland is the most populous city in New Zealand, accommodating over 1.6 million populations, and is larger than Madrid and Berlin. Located in Northern Island, the metropolitan city is a major transport and business hub of New Zealand. It is the city introduced as one of the best places to live in the world.
The Auckland Central Business District (CBD) is the geographical and economic heart of the Auckland metropolitan area. Facing to Hauraki Golf, the area holds New Zealand’s largest cruise ship terminal and cargo ports in the waterfront areas.
CBD is one of the most densely developed places in New Zealand, situating skyscrapers and business and commercial areas. Get the top of Auckland’s landmark, Sky Tower, a 60 story architecture with hi-end restaurants. Discover the magnificent panoramic views of the city.
Queen Street is the major commercial street in CBD. The street starts from Queen Whalf of the Auckland’s waterfront, adjacent with The Auckland Ferry Terminal and Britomart Transport Center, and runs straight towards the residential area of the southern suburbs through CBD.
The Auckland Central Business District is about a half hour drive from Auckland Airport (AKL) in Manukau if traffic is smooth.
Where is the Best Place to Stay in Auckland?
One of the best places to stay in Auckland is Britomart. It is located in the northern part of the Auckland city centre. Britomart Transport Center, Auckland’s main transportation hub, and SkyBus service from the airport are lined in Britomart.
You will have literary everything in Britomart. Viaduct Harbor, one of Auckland’s most active and lively places, is located on the west side of Britomart. The Auckland Central Business District (CBD) is located on the south side.
You will find the Auckland Ferry Terminal just in front of Britomart at the north. It is the cruise terminal where you start cruising!
Auckland City Center
Why Britomart to stay?
- Located in the Auckland City Centre
- Central Train Station and frequent buses
- The Auckland Ferry Terminal and an iconic Edwardian building, Old Building
- A lot of restaurants, bars, pubs, shops and banks
- Open and friendly residents
- Best place for shopping in Auckland
Things to do in Auckland
- Stroll the Bays by walk and cycling
- Catch cityscapes from Sky Tower
- Visit the Auckland Museum
- Relax at Auckland Botanic Gardens
Auckland Airport Transfer to the City Centre
Getting the City Centre from Auckland Airport (AKL)
The Auckland City Centre is located about 24 km distance and takes 30 minutes to drive from the nearest international airport, Auckland Airport.
Auckland Transport General Tips
Cost by New Zealand Doller (NZD) on November 2018
- Make sure you have cash at hand in advance. Most of the public transportation requires you a cash to pay.
- Available transport systems are SkyBus, Super Shuttle, Backpacker Shuttle, taxi, train, Uber and bus. Find the cheapest and best convenient option for you!
- Click Currency Converter for the transport fare.
Auckland Airport to the City Center
1. SkyBus – cost by New Zealand Doller (NZD) on November 2018
SkyBus is my best recommendation to transfer from Auckland Airport to the city centre. If you are travelling by yourself, SkyBus is definitely for you. It saves you money.
SkyBus is also the best convenient because you are free from carrying heavy luggage on the way to your accommodation.
Get SkyBus at the door 11 outside the international arrivals terminal or outside door 4 at the domestic terminal. The fare is 16 NZD per person one way and takes about 40 minutes to an hour to get the city centre. SkyBus operates for 24 hours and 365 days. See SkyBus Timetable.
Please ask a driver at the nearest bus stop you should get off if you are not certain. If you stay in the Britomart area, get off the bus as soon as you find the Edwardian Baroque architecture, Old Building, on Quay Street.
The photograph of Old Building at the right was taken a few years ago.
The cheapest public transport from the airport to the city centre is with a combination of bus and train. If your priority is definitely money, try this option.
First get 380 Airporter bus from Auckland Airport to Patatoetoe Train Station. Then get a train at Mritmore Train Station towards Britomart Train Station.
You have to transfer from a bus to a train and have to carry luggage but this is the cheapest option to get the city centre. It is all included 12.50 NZD.
Taxi from Auckland Airpor to the city centre takes about 30 to 50 minutes dependent on a traffic situation.
You can pick up a taxi at the door 8 outside the international arrivals terminal or outside door 4 at the domestic terminal.
Estimate fares from the airport to the city centre is between 40 – 75 NZD. The fare is different which taxi you pick up. The flat rate is about 40 NZD. However, if you just jump in any old cab and are charged by-the-meter, fares are to be around 60 – 70 NZD.
In fact, I did not know the fare differences of the taxi companies. I made a mistake. My best suggestion is always to ask how much the taxi fare will be before you use the service. It is not nice to get an unwelcome surprise right from the beginning of a trip.
Note: Taxi Surcharge Information
Auckland Airport charges 5 NZD per pick up and 2 NZD per drop off, automatically added to the fixed fare rate.
As a replacement for a taxi, Uber is getting popular in Auckland. The fee is average around 1.35 NZD/km in Auckland. The fare from Auckland Airport to the city center is about 35 NZD without adding the base fare (usually 1.30 NZD) and airport surcharges.
Uber drivers are permitted to drop off riders at the Auckland Airport as far as they are ‘registered’ with the Auckland Airport. There is also an airport surcharge of 2 NZD for drop-off and 5 NZD for pick-up.
It is also a good idea to use Uber service while you explore the Auckland city center.
5. Airport Shuttle Bus
Airport Shuttle Bus is the best option for a group and family trip. The cheapest airport shuttle bus costs 35 NZD for one person plus 8 NZD for each extra person together in the same group.
If you are travelling as a group, the shuttle is the best. For example, a solo passenger would pay around 25 NZD to get from Auckland Airport to Auckland Central, while a group of four passengers travelling together would pay around 55 NZD total for the same trip.
In Auckland Airport homepage, I have found information on a shuttle bus service called Super Shuttle. A pre-booking is required:
Freephone 0800 SHUTTLE (0800 748 885)
Phone: +64 9 522 5100
6. City Airport Backpacker Shuttle
Backpacker Shuttle announces “if the wait time is longer than 30 minutes, the fair is half price”. It sounds fun and interesting. Let’s check their service.
The fare starts at 20 NZD per person, and a prebooking is required. There is a luggage limit so it is better to check out how they offer their service at Backpacker Suttle.
Licensed Rental Car Service at Auckland Airport
Rental car service is something I definitely would like to try next time in Auckland. You can explore the scenic landscapes by taking just a half-hour away from the city center.
Auckland offers one of the most beautiful places for sightseeing in the world. Visting countryside for scenic landscapes is a true luxury in urban life. I would love to take pictures of Auckland’s countryside.
Start your trip with a rental car as soon as you arrive at Auckland Airport. The world’s leading and licensed rental car companies, Hertz and Avis, are available at the arrivals area on the grand floor in the international terminal.
Explore the City of Sails and fully immerse yourself with scenic natural landscapes. It is not surprising why the city is called the City of Sails. Auckland is strongly identified with the images of water.
Recommended places to visit with a rental car in Auckland:
- Devon Port
- Hiheke Isnand
- Auckland’s Best West Coast Beaches – Muriwai Beach, Karekare Beach, Piha Beach, Bethells Beach, Whatip
Where is The Auckland Ferry Terminal?
The Auckland Ferry Terminal (aka. The Down Town Ferry Terminal) is the largest cruise ship terminal in New Zealand and is the place where you set sail to the Pacific Ocean.
The world’s major cruise lines are docked at the cruise terminal for Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands cruises.
The Auckland Ferry Terminal
The Auckland Ferry Terminal Address
Quay St, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
The Auckland Ferry Terminal is located at the north of Britomart in Auckland city centre. Find an Edwardian Baroque building, Old Building, on Quay Street. It is an iconic architecture of the cruise terminal.
Located at the north side of the city centre, The Auckland Ferry Terminal is in a 24 km distance and is about 30 minutes drive from Auckland Airport if a traffic is smooth. Find your accommodation at the best convenient place for your cruise in the city centre area.
The cruise terminal is clean and safe, filled with friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Free Wi-Fi is available. Shops, restaurants and banks are just in a walking distance from the cruise terminal.
The nearest train station is Britomart Transport Centre of The North Island Main Trunk. It is just a minute away by walk to the cruise terminal.
The LINK Red Line Bus will stop at Britomart, just in front of the cruise terminal. Get off the bus as soon as you find Old Building.
The Auckland Ferry Terminal Parking Information
If you plan to get the cruise terminal by your car, car parking service is available at the cruise terminal.
Outdoor storage service is starting from 20 NZD a day at Platinum Parking. You can drop off your car either at Princess Warf or Queen Warf of the Auckland Ferry Terminal.
Find More Discount Fares to Explore the City Centre
AT Hop Day Pass
Save money at least 25% discount off single trip cash bus, train and ferry fares (excludes NiteRider, SkyBus and Waiheke ferry services).
Buy an AT HOP card for $10 first and then load an 18 NZD day pass on to it. Unless you have purchased a prepaid card, cards must be topped up at the time of purchase. Minimum top-up is $5 NZD. The purchase price is non-refundable. Find AT Hop retailers of Auckland.
Senior and Super Gold Concession
Seniors can travel for free on trains, selected bus and ferry services in Auckland, after 9 am weekdays and all day weekends and public holidays with an AT HOP card loaded with a SuperGold public transport concession.
- For residents of Auckland, please visit AT Hop card.
- For travellers outside Auckland, please visit AT Hop card.
Children and Student Discount
Dependent on the age of the children, there is a discount for Auckland transportation. Please find the details Child and Student Discount of AT Hop card.
Bonus Travel Tips: Auckland Visitors Information
- Travel Visa Information at official New Zealand Immigration.
- Currency: New Zealand Doller (NZD) Go to a currency converter.
- The main language: English
- Internet: Free WiFi access at The Auckland Ferry Terminal
- Auckland Weather Information
- New Zealand Public Holidays
- The Auckland Ferry Terminal (aka. Down Town Ferry Terminal) on Google Map
How do you find Auckland’s transport system in this article? Please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you.
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