Bee Card FAQs

The Bee Card is a tag on tag off bus card that gives bus passengers cheaper fares in nine regions around New Zealand, including Otago. The Bee Card has replaced the GoCard for Orbus in Dunedin and Queenstown.

Using the Bee Card gives users cheaper fares and if they register online they’ll get more benefits.

Get your Otago Bee Card online from www.BeeCard.co.nz, at our ORC offices or on the bus.

In Dunedin, we have a new customer service desk at a more central location. It's at Level 2, 144 Rattray Street, Philip Laing House, near the Exchange.

We have a new customer services desk at Philip Laing House in Dunedin in a more central location. 

DUNEDIN

  • ORC office: Level 2, 144 Rattray Street, Philip Laing House
  • Dunedin City Council Customer Service Centres 
  • University Book Shop

QUEENSTOWN

  • Otago Regional Council office Queenstown 
    Terrace Junction, 1092 Frankton Road
  • Coming soon in May, 2021, the i-SITE at 22 Shotover Street, in The Clocktower Building.

Yes. Just like you did with a GoCard, you will get cheaper fares with a Bee Card than paying in cash.

Adult fares with a Bee Card are currently $2 one way anywhere on either the Queenstown or the Dunedin network. You can use your Bee Card in the other eight regions on the system but different fares apply in different regions. 

Click here for Dunedin fares

Click here for Queenstown fares. 

Click here to learn more about SuperGold fares. 

Find out more about the flat fare trial in Dunedin here.

A Bee Card is $5 and can be bought online at www.BeeCard.co.nz, on buses in Dunedin and Queenstown (CASH ONLY) and at your usual retailers including ORC offices. 

Dunedin 
Otago Regional Council offices:
70 Stafford Street
Level 2, 144 Rattray Street, Philip Laing House

Dunedin City Council Customer Service Centres 

University Book Shop

Queenstown 
Otago Regional Council office:
Terrace Junction, 1092 Frankton Road

Stanley Street Orbus ticket hut (closed from Monday 9 November until further notice)

When you order online, you must top up your card first.

Top up your Bee Card with a minimum $5 online at www.BeeCard.co.nz, on buses (CASH ONLY) and at your usual retailers including ORC offices. 

You can also set auto top up. 

Dunedin 
Otago Regional Council offices:
70 Stafford Street
Level 2, 144 Rattray Street, Philip Laing House

Dunedin City Council Customer Service Centres 

University Book Shop

Queenstown 
Otago Regional Council office:
Terrace Junction, 1092 Frankton Road

Stanley Street Orbus ticket hut (closed from Monday 9 November until further notice)

When you order online, you must top up your card first.

 

No. GoCards can no longer be used for travel in Otago. 

No, however there are a whole lot of benefits to registering. Find out here.

Under this current COVID climate it has become even more important to be able to top up online and track your own travel. Both these features are available when you register your card. 

Other benefits to registering online include loading concessions and linking to and managing other cards, such as family members.

It’s easy. Head to www.BeeCard.co.nz and follow instructions. Check out these great videos supplied by Bay of Plenty Regional Council who are also rolling out the Bee Card.

Bee Card – Register your card

Bee Card – Create an account

Bee Card – Manage your card

Top up your Otago Bee Card at www.BeeCard.co.nz.

Dunedin 
Otago Regional Council offices:
70 Stafford Street
Level 2, 144 Rattray Street, Philip Laing House

Dunedin City Council Customer Service Centres 

University Book Shop

Queenstown 
Otago Regional Council office:
Terrace Junction, 1092 Frankton Road

Stanley Street Orbus ticket hut (this is currently closed until further notice)

We encourage everyone to register their card and top up online to help speed up boarding on the bus and reduce interactions with drivers under the current COVID environment.

Retailers will have contactless (payWave or Eftpos) payment, but buses are not loaded with this technology so CASH only.

The minimum top up will be $5.

In Otago, there are currently only two concessions, and they are for SuperGolds and young people aged 5-18. There is no tertiary student discount. 

To get a concession discount, you need to register your Bee Card at www.beecard.co.nz or get help from the Otago Regional Council to do so.

Once it’s on there, you won’t need to show the driver your ID. You just tag on and off, and the system will recognise your concession discount.

So, whether you are 17 or 70, if you are eligible for a concession, you must register the card to enjoy concessionary travel.

SuperGold Card holders click here for more detailed information about free travel and your Bee Card. 

Check out this great video of Dunedin passengers giving the Bee Card a go. 

  • Top up with a minimum of $5
  • The first tag will take a few seconds longer than usual – just present your card across the scanner near the door and wait for the beep. That is how you know it has worked.
  • Bee Cards activate when they are tagged, so if you’ve topped up online but it says ‘pending balance’ don’t worry, it’ll pull through the funds when you tag on
  • Online top ups can take up to 12 hours, so don’t top up 5 minutes before your journey
  • Concession changes may take 30 minutes to pull through, so don’t register your child’s concession right before the journey or they will end up being charged the adult fare.
  • If your balance says you were charged $3 but you’re sure you tagged on and off, it may just be the system processing the information. Check later!

Do not forget to tag off!

When a Bee Card user swipes their card as they enter - tagging on -  the system recognises where they are travelling from.

When they tag off, it closes the loop and charges a passenger for their travel. Forget to tag off and you get charged a default fare, which is the $3 flat cash fare. 

Tagging off also ensures you won't be charged if you have changed buses within the free transfer window of 45 minutes from the last tag off. 

Tagging on and off also gives us rich data about where people travel helping us improve the network according to people's travel habits. 

You can no longer transfer money from your GoCard to your Bee Card. 

 

Prefer not to get caught out? You can now set an auto top up on your Bee Card when you reach a certain amount. It’s just another advantage of having a registered Bee Card.

How to set it up:

Go into your account.

Click the card you want to set the auto top up on.

Check the left hand menu to find Auto top up.

Input your threshold (ie what the amount is that triggers the top up) and the amount to top up (minimum of $5).

Then chose your payment and follow the instructions. 

You might share your email address with others in your family.

 

The Bee Card doesn’t allow for the same email address for more than one account, BUT it does allow you to have up to 100 cards linked to the same account.

 

Once you have created an account at www.BeeCard.co.nz select 'Register card to account'  and enter the Bee Card number of the additional card.

 

Once you have entered the Bee Card number, the card name will have the account holder name defaulted. To change these details, select 'Manage Card' then 'Edit Card Holder' and enter the name and DOB of whom you wish to assign the card to.

  

Alternatively, pop by our office and we can give you cards without having to top them up, and link them to your account for you.

If you need to take two buses as part of your commute, you may still only pay $2. When a Bee Card user changes buses as part of their commute, they get a free transfer, so long as they change buses within 45 minutes. That means you should tag on your next bus within 45 minutes of tagging off your last bus. Remember to tag off the second bus too.

 

When a Bee Card user swipes their card as they enter - tagging on -  the system recognises where they are travelling from.

When they tag off, it closes the loop and charges a passenger for their travel. Forget to tag off and you get charged a default fare, which is the $3 flat cash fare. 

Tagging off also ensures you won't be charged if you have changed buses within the free transfer window of 45 minutes from the last tag off. 

Tagging on and off also gives us rich data about where people travel helping us improve the network according to people's travel habits. 

Children 4 and under are free, so they don’t need a Bee Card until they turn 5. Just tell the driver your child is under 5 when boarding.

If you try to register your under 5 year old on www.BeeCard.co.nz when you register other family members you will find that the Bee Card system won’t recognise the age as it’s free of charge in the system. The best thing to do is hold on to the card and give it to them when they turn 5.  

When you order cards via the website, and apply a top up, the balance will remain at $0.00 until the you have activated the card upon arrival.

To do this, you need to activate the card on the website using the 3-digit security code on the back of the card. Once this is done, the balance will display as ‘Pending’ until tagged on a bus, when it will change to cash value balance.

Top ups only show immediately if your Bee Card has been placed on a Bee Card machine (such as on the bus top ups or at an ORC office).

All other top ups, including online top ups can take up to 12 hours to show on your card. 

When available it will display as a pending balance until the first time you tag on after the top up. 

To see a pending balance, log

  1. Go to BeeCard.co.nz and log into your account
  2. Select ‘Manage Card’ on the Bee Card you need to activate

This will then open the card details, with pending balance displayed.

This may be because you have not activated a card online using the 3-digit security code, or you haven't tagged the card in the right place.

You may also have insufficient funds.

To activate your card:

  1. Go to BeeCard.co.nz and log into your account
  2. Select ‘Manage Card’ on the Bee Card you need to activate
  3. Select ‘Activate Card’ an enter the 3 digit security code that is on the back of your Bee Card

Note - some mobile devices don’t show the full screen so you may need to do this from a larger tablet or laptop

Or you may have been given unissued card,you can talk to our customer service support in person or by phone for assistance with this.

You can ask our customer service team for support with this at the Otago Regional Council in person or by phone.

In Dunedin, call 0800 ORBUSDN (0800 672 8736).

In Queenstown call 0800 ORBUSQT (0800 672 8778).

Or email transport@orc.govt.nz.

Concession changes may take 30 minutes to pull through from time it is changed on the website. 

If the concession was loaded more than 30 minutes ago, check the account and update the card accordingly.

You can ask our customer service team for support with this at the Otago Regional Council in person or by phone.

In Dunedin, call 0800 ORBUSDN (0800 672 8736).

In Queenstown call 0800 ORBUSQT (0800 672 8778).

Or email transport@orc.govt.nz.

If you forget your password, you can reset it by clicking ‘forget password’ on the login screen on the website.

Alternatively, this can be actioned via our customer service support at the Otago Regional Council in person or by phone. Once done, you will be sent an email prompt with the temporary password.

If your registered Bee Card is lost or stolen, you can cancel your card online (www.beecard.co.nz) or in person at one of our ORC offices, and your balance can then be transferred to a new card. In person cancellations are quickest if you need your card for travel within the next few days.

On the www.beecard.co.nz website, simply select ‘order replacement’ after cancelling your registered Bee Card and your balance will be transferred to the new card once issued. You will need to pay for a replacement card. Balances cannot be transferred on cards that are not registered.

Alternatively you can purchase a new Bee Card from your bus driver, the ORC offices or one of our retailers. Once you have this, give us a call, send us an email or come in and see us. We can transfer the balance for you.

If we identify a technical fault with your registered Bee Card, we can provide you with a free replacement card. You can then register the new card to your account and complete a balance transfer.

All refunds and re-imbursements will be applied at the discretion of the Otago Regional Council (ORC).

Refunds will be considered in the following circumstances:

  • Genuine error with Bee Card top-up
  • For a faulty card
  • Extreme hardship
  • Until 30 Nov 2020 Passenger error

Faulty Card

A faulty card means a Bee Card that does not tag on or off or top up.

Hardship

In certain cases, at the discretion of the ORC, we may be able to provide a refund for circumstances of extreme hardship. Please note:

  • Provide a registered Bee Card
  • Passenger must surrender card to ORC
  • One off occasion only for the same passenger
  • An admin fee may be charged (at the discretion of council)

Passenger error

Passenger error means the act of the passenger causing a fare overcharge.  Examples of passenger error include forgetting to tag off, or not registering a card to receive a concession.

This is valid for SuperGold passengers until the 30 November, 2020.

No. 

If you have interacted with the driver to get a paper ticket, your journey has been accounted for. Do not tag off, or the ticketing machine will think you are tagging on for the first time. 

Yes, though we recommend that every passenger has their own Bee Card.

If you’re travelling with a friend of family member who doesn’t have a card, you can get them discounted travel with your Bee Card. Tag your own card on, and then talk to the driver about using your Bee Card to pay for your friend/family member.

The driver will give them a paper ticket. If you have a paper ticket you don’t need to tag off. Only tag off if you have tagged on.

The only available tickets for this are adult and child. 

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