Bee Card - About the card

The new Bee card is an account based system.  You can manage your account balance, concessions and view your transaction history on your account.


Multiple cards attached to one account

With the Bee Card you can have multiple (up to 100) Bee Cards attached to one account. This means the whole family, even extended family can be associated to the one account.

This is a great way for SuperGold holders who do not have Internet access to be able to obtain a Bee Card.


Are there different cards for an adult and child?

No. The cards are generic as they are now. However, if a card is loaded with a concession e.g. child or Super Gold it can only be used by this individual.


When ordering a Bee Card from, why do I have to pay a $5 top-up for my children’s Bee Cards when school buses are free?

 While this question is simple, the answer is complex.

The Bee Card is a prepay travel smartcard that is currently being rolled out for local public transport in Northland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Hawke's Bay, Taranaki, Manawatu-Whanganui, Nelson, Otago and Invercargill.

The Bee Card system, including the website was designed before the conception of the Tauranga free school bus trial that is underway until December 2020. This is why the $5 minimum top up charge (except for SuperGold card holders) exists on, because all other school children in the Bay of Plenty Region pay a fare for using the urban bus services.

Instead of using the website, you can pick up a free Bee Card (until the end of October 2020) from a bus driver and register the card online at, or pick up from a Bay of Plenty Regional Council office at:

  • Regional House, 1 Elizabeth Street Tauranga.
  • Corner Fenton and Pukaki Streets Rotorua
  • Regional House, 1 Elizabeth Street Tauranga

Please note, if Tauranga school students travel on the blue dedicated Bayhopper school buses, they will get free travel and will not need to use a Bee Card.

However, if a school student uses the yellow Bayhopper buses in Tauranga at any time, including the school free travel period before 9am and between 2:30 and 6pm, they will need a registered Bee Card with a child concession applied. The easiest way to get a child concession applied is to register the Bee Card on-line.

The ticket system will automatically recognise the free school travel period and will not charge a fare. If they don’t have a Bee Card, students will not get free travel during the school free travel period. At all other times, the school student will be charged the child fare, provided the child concession is applied to their Bee Card, otherwise the adult fare will be charged


Will each passenger require their own card?

Yes. Every passenger should have their own Bee Card and they will need their own card to travel on a concession fare. Passengers can use a card to pay for additional passengers through the driver.


What is benefit of registering a card?

Benefits of registering a card include; online top up, automatic loading of concessions, ability to view transaction history and ability to cancel a lost or stolen card, and have the balance transferred to a new card.


How will a passenger register their card?

An account will need to be created (online at or at a BOPRC office). Cards can then be ordered or follow the easy steps to register a card to an account.


How will a passenger view their balance and check transaction history?

Passengers can log into their online account and select ‘Manage Card’ under the ‘cards’ section of the website. From there they can check the balance or view transaction history.


How long does it take for a top-up to show on my Bee Card?

If you top up your card at a customer service point, or on the bus, your money is loaded on to your card straight away.

Online transactions generally go through the system within 12 hours and show on your Bee Card when you tag on. In the meantime, your money is sitting under pending transactions in your online account.


How should a passenger look after their card?

Passengers should keep their card in a safe place to help ensure it doesn’t become bent or scratched. Do not punch a hole in it as the system will not be able to read it.


What happens to a passenger’s personal information and travel history?

The privacy of a passenger’s personal information is our top priority. Information and passwords will not be shared, and all financial information is kept secure through a certified third party.


If a passenger wants to query a transaction on their account, who should they contact?

They should contact a BOPRC office.


Is the balance protected if a Bee Card is lost, stolen or damaged?

If a passenger’s registered card is lost or stolen, they can cancel their card online or in person and the balance will be transferred to a new card. The passenger will need to pay for a replacement card. If a card is not registered, the balance cannot be transferred.


Can I get a cash refund for any unused credit on Smartride (Tauranga/Whakatāne) or Cityride (Rotorua) cards?

No. Refunds will not be available except to correct an error made by us, or in cases of extreme financial hardship. If you think you qualify for extreme financial hardship, please contact us. However, you can transfer your old card balance to a new Bee Card.


Bee Card

Bee Card - Concessions

Bee Card - On the Bus

Bee Card - How to Guide