I am a huge fan of travelling by bus because first, it is the cheapest mode of travelling and secondly, I get to enjoy scenic views along the way especially in picturesque New Zealand. The second long distance bus ride I took in New Zealand was with InterCity, travelling from Tauranga to Hastings specially for the blueberry picking season. 😀
For your info, my first long distance bus ride was with Manabus, travelling from Auckland to Tauranga and it was an enjoyable experience. So, how was my experience with InterCity? Read on…
InterCity – New Zealand All Over, InterCity FlexiPass & TravelPass
Like its tagline, InterCity operates one of New Zealand’s largest transportation networks that include busses, ferries and cruises. It boasts the lowest cost transport networks, with bus fares from just NZD 1 with over 100 daily services connecting more than 600 towns, cities and communities nationwide.
InterCity offers a range of economical pass products that give travellers total freedom to explore the national network at discounted rates. Its cost-savvy InterCity FlexiPass and InterCity TravelPass are highly popular among backpackers and travellers alike.
InterCity also offers various types of day tours at discounted prices too. Do note that backpacker discounts are available on selected services only and do not apply to InterCity transport passes or tours. Valid ID cards (YHA, BBH, ISIC, Nomads, VIP, Peterpans Gold Cards and Hostelling International Cards) are required when you purchase your ticket.
My First Bus Ride with InterCity
I decided to give InterCity a try and booked a bus ride from Tauranga to Hastings via its official website – InterCity.Co.Nz. The booking process was fast, simple and pretty straightforward. I just need to input the destination I am going to, from where I am taking the bus, the date(s) of travel, the number of passengers and the promotion code (if any).
Once that is done, InterCity will show a list of the available time and ticket prices for that specific journey. Mind you, different departure time presents different pricing even if it is on the same day. However, InterCity do offer promotions from time to time therefore, it is best to check its website for the latest info and updates.
For your info, tickets that are booked way in advance are usually cheaper than booking it several days ahead. Each passenger is allowed up to 2 free checked-in bags of up to 20-25kg each, plus a carry-on luggage, however this varies on some services.
Pleasant & Scenic Bus Ride from Tauranga to Hastings
Jenny and I boarded our InterCity bus to Hastings at the bus stop located next to Bayfair instead of Tauranga city centre because it was closer to the place we were staying. It is free seating on the bus and the seats are allocated on a first-come-first-serve basis.
The seats were compact, basic and reasonably clean – it was not spacious, but good enough for a short trip. The bus does not have a toilet onboard. The bus ride from Tauranga to Hastings was a breathtaking experience. It took us through winding roads, mountain cliffs and picturesque farmlands.
The bus made several stops along the way to drop-off and pick-up passengers, mainly in Rotorua, Taupo and Napier. We were given about 15-20 minutes to go for a toilet break and/or grab something to eat at both stops. Mind you, latecomers will be left stranded.
In a Nutshell
It was a pleasant and scenic bus ride from Tauranga to Hastings, New Zealand with InterCity. I do not have any complaints or compliments for InterCity. If I were to compare between InterCity and Manabus, I actually prefer the latter for several outstanding reasons. 😀