Public Transport in the Bay of Plenty under COVID-19 Red

Public Transport in the Bay of Plenty under COVID-19 Red

Our bus services will continue running under the COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic lights).  The Bay of Plenty Region will operate under Red guidelines, from 11.59pm Sunday 23rd January 2022.

Updated 24th January 2022


Public transport is an essential service that everyone is welcome to use.  You are not required to be vaccinated to use these services however please ensure good hygiene and be kind. 


Travelling on public transport at Red

At Red, you can travel for any reason, anywhere in New Zealand. There are no boundaries under the traffic lights framework.

Please note:

  • You do not need a vaccine pass or a negative COVID-19 test (but you cannot travel if you are waiting on test results).
  • If you are travelling into a different setting area, you will need to follow the guidance for that area when you are there.
  • There are no physical distancing requirements on transport services or in airports, train stations or bus terminals.

Please continue to travel in a safe way:

  • Always wear a face mask on public transport unless you have an exemption.
    • This applies to all bus services including the dedicated school buses in Tauranga for children 12 years and over.
  • Practice good hygiene habits.
  • Scan in or keep a record of which service you use.
    • QR code posters and flags are available on all urban buses to help you keep track of where you’ve been. We recommend you use the NZ COVID Tracer app to do this; including scanning QR codes or manually recording travel information in the NZ COVID Tracer App (where QR codes are not available)
    • You can use the Baybus Passenger Trip Register if you do not have a smartphone.


Total Mobility at Red

Total Mobility Services continue to operate under Red. Please see our guidelines below:

  • Please do not travel if you have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Apart from the driver, only travel with people you know.
  • Minimise the number of stops on the way to your destination.
  • Drivers and passengers must wear a face mask.
  • Drivers legally must display QR code posters to help you keep track of where you’ve been. We recommend you use the NZ COVID Tracer app to do this, or another way that works for you. You can use the Baybus Passenger Trip Register if you do not have a smartphone.

The Ministry of Health have established a support team to help people with disabilities get vaccinated.  The team assists people and their carers to get information about the vaccine, make bookings, organise support at vaccination sites and arrange transport.  To access this service please call the COVID-19 Vaccination Healthline on freephone 0800 28 29 26 8am-8pm Monday to Friday and ‘push 2’ to speak to the support team.


Always wear a face mask on public transport

  • Everyone 12 years and older legally must wear a face mask on public transport in Red. 
  • A face covering will need to be an actual face mask.  Scarves, banadana's or t-shirts should not be used. This change comes into effect from 11:59pm Thursday 3rd February 2022.
  • Drivers and transport operators will not stop people without face masks from boarding public transport because some people will have legitimate reasons for not wearing a face mask. However, please take personal responsibility and take face masks seriously.
  • We know that some people who have a disability or health condition may not be able to wear a face mask safely or comfortably. Please be mindful of this. They still have the right to food, pharmacies and other services.

You do not need to wear face mask if:

    • it is unsafe, for example if wearing one means a driver cannot safely operate the vehicle.
    • there is an emergency.
    • you have a physical or mental health illness or condition or disability that makes wearing a face mask unsuitable.
    • you need to prove your identity.
    • you need to communicate with someone who has a hearing impairment.
    • you need to take medicine.

Information from the Ministry of Health, regarding the use of face masks in the community, is available here.


Practice good hygiene and follow Ministry of Health advice

  • This includes washing and drying your hands thoroughly with soap and water (or hand sanitiser if soap and water is not available).
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow and don’t touch your face.
  • Wear a face mask.


Vehicle cleaning

All public transport vehicles continue to be cleaned regularly in accordance with Ministry of Health guidance.


More information

Check the COVID-19 Protection Framework for the region you are traveling to so you are aware of any requirements or restrictions before travelling.  This information is available at the Unite Against COVID-19 website.

For more information, please call us on 0800 4 BAY BUS (0800 4 229 287) between 6am and 10pm Monday to Sunday.

On behalf of Bay of Plenty Regional Council’s Transport Team and all of the hard-working bus drivers and cleaning staff, thank you for your patience and understanding.