Public Transport in Invercargill© Unsplash
Public Transport in Invercargill

Public Transport in Invercargill

© Unsplash

How to Get Around Invercargill

Getting around Invercargill is super easy thanks to the extensive bus network connecting travellers between the city centre and the suburbs of this sprawling city. Although Invercargill has a history of trains and trams, public transport in Invercargill today is limited to buses and taxis. So check out this guide on how to get around Invercargill without a car using the public transport network.

Find out more about planning a trip to Invercargill in The Complete Travel Guide to Invercargill or planning an affordable trip in The Travel Guide to Invercargill on a Budget.

Invercargill’s Bee Card

The Bee Card is a way of paying for Invercargill’s public transport without rummaging for change. More to the point, the Bee Card gives you a third off the fare price. In other words, all fares are typically NZ$3, but only NZ$2 with a Bee Card. This card is only worth getting if you are planning on staying in Invercargill for a while, as you have to buy the card for NZ$5 and be topped up with a minimum of NZ$5.

All you need to do with the prepay smart card is load it up with some money and swipe your way on and off any of the Invercargill public buses on the electric card readers. You can buy and load up your Bee Card online or at the cashier counters of the Invercargill City Council building (101 Esk Street).

Public Transport in Invercargill©

Public Buses in Invercargill

The Invercargill bus network is the main form of public transport in Invercargill taking you to, from and around the city and in between the suburbs.

Buses operate Monday to Saturday, from 7.20am to 5.20pm, in 30-minute intervals on weekday mornings and one-hour intervals throughout the day. Saturdays have a slightly different timetable but still regular services. There are no buses on Sundays and public holidays.

All fares are around NZ$3 – discounted with a Bee Card (see above).

The main bus station in Invercargill, known as the BusSmart Hub or Tay Street Hub is located near the Civic Theatre at 88 Tay Street. Remember, you will need to signal the driver if you are at one of the quiet stops. There are six bus routes in Invercargill including:

Clifton (1)

BusSmart Hub – Conon St – Janet St – Ythan St – William St – Ythan St – O’Hara St – Ness St – Kew Rd – Elles Rd – Dipton St –  Lock St – Waiau Cr – Stirrat St – Wicklow St – Frome St – Humber St – Avon Rd – Cushen St – Frome St – Wicklow St – Elles Rd – Kew Rd – Hospital loop – Kew Rd – Ness St – O’Hara St – Ythan St – William St – Ythan St – Janet St – Conon St – BusSmart Hub.

Kingswell (2)

BusSmart Hub – Elles Rd – Martin St – Pomona St – John St -Newbie St – Tramway Rd – Chesney St – McQuarrie St – Brown St – Tramway Rd – Newbie St – John St – Pomona St – Martin St – Elles Rd – BusSmart Hub.

Newfield (3)

BusSmart Hub – Elles Rd – Tweed St – Thornhill St – Centre St – Regent St – Lauder Cres – Regent St – Centre St – Thornhill St –
Tweed St – Elles Rd – BusSmart Hub.

Hargest (4)

BusSmart Hub – Deveron St – Yarrow St – Dee St – Gala St – Mary St – St Andrew St – Sydney St – King St – Windsor St – Layard St – Racecourse Rd – Lamond St – Matai St – Layard St – Windsor
St – King St – Sydney S – St Andrew St – Mary St – Gala St – Dee St – BusSmart Hub.

Waverley (5)

BusSmart Hub – Deveron St – Spey St – Dee St – Yarrow St – Isabella St – Tay St – Lithgow St – Yarrow St – Derwent St –
St Andrew St – Exmouth St – George St – Ward St – St Andrew St – Lyon St – Yarrow St – Glengarry Crescent Loop – Yarrow St –
Lithgow St – Tay St – Isabella St – Yarrow St – Dee St – BusSmart Hub.

Waikiwi (6)

BusSmart Hub – Deveron St – Yarrow St – Dee St – Bay Rd – Paterson S – Heywood St – Ross St – Elgin St – North Rd – Moa St – Kereru St – West Plains Rd – North Rd – Elgin St – Ross St – Heywood St – Paterson St – Bay Rd – Dee St – BusSmart Hub.

Buses to Bluff, Dunedin and Queenstown

There is also a door-to-door bus service between Invercargill, Bluff, Dunedin and Queenstown. This service is available with Catch-A-Bus South and costs approximately NZ$30-$45 for bus stop pick-ups and NZ$30-$65 for door-to-door pick-ups. This service must be booked in advance.

Public Transport in Invercargill© Pexels

Taxis in Dunedin

If you need to get somewhere fast and you don’t care about paying substantially more than a bus fare, then getting a taxi in Invercargill is your best option. The taxi companies in Invercargill are:

  • Blue Star
  • Invercargill Taxis
  • Ezicab

The average starting fare is NZ$3, from there the tariff is usually NZ$3 per km. See how this compares with other New Zealand cities:

Public Transport in Invercargill©

Invercargill Airport Transfers

Invercargill Airport receives regular flights from Christchurch, Auckland and Wellington. There are a number of taxi services (see above) offering door-to-door transport from Invercargill Airport to anywhere in Invercargill city.

Although there are no dedicated shuttle or bus services to Invercargill Airport, there are car rentals at the airport, including:

Learn more about New Zealand car rentals here.


Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before calling New Zealand home. He has now spent over a decade in the New Zealand tourism industry, clocking in more than 600 activities across the country. He is passionate about sharing those experiences and advice on NZ Pocket Guide and its YouTube channel. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides.

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