COVID-19 Travel Information
COVID-19 Protection Framework (Traffic Light System)
On this page you will find useful information on travelling with InterCity under the COVID-19 Protection Framework ('traffic lights'). For information on current services and timetables please view our Network Updates page.
InterCity will be operating throughout New Zealand at all colours of the traffic lights. Masks are required on board and you must not travel if you're feeling unwell. See below for frequently asked questions.
Do I need to be vaccinated to travel on InterCity bus services?
You do not need to present a vaccination certificate to travel on regular services. Proof of vaccination is required on sightseeing tours. See below for more info.
Why are unvaccinated people allowed on the bus?
The government's COVID-19 Protection Framework says that public transport operators – including InterCity – are not allowed to deny travel based on vaccination status. This is a legal requirement and we do not have any discretion.
I'm unvaccinated/I don't want to confirm my vaccination status. Am I allowed to travel?
Yes, you can still travel. The government's COVID-19 Protection Framework says that public transport operators – including InterCity – are not allowed to deny travel based on vaccination status. This is a legal requirement and we do not have any discretion.
Please also be aware that many of the cafes where we make rest stops only allow vaccinated passengers inside. We recommend that you pack your own food and drink for your trip.
Do I have to wear a mask on the bus? What if I am exempt?
Yes, you must wear a mask or face covering on all InterCity services. You'll need to supply your own mask and keep it on throughout your journey.
Our drivers will make announcements throughout the service reminding passengers that masks or face coverings are mandatory on public transport. They may also remind passengers as they board the bus. If you are exempt from wearing a mask, you do not have to have an exemption card, but a card will make it easier if you need to explain why you are not wearing one. You can find out who is eligible and how to apply for an exemption card by visiting covid19.govt.nz.
For more information about masks and homemade face coverings, visit the official government COVID-19 website.
Do your buses have QR codes for me to scan?
Because we collect all the necessary contact tracing information when you book your trip with us, we are not required to display QR codes on our buses (see the Ministry of Transport website for more info). However, you are welcome to add your trip manually to the COVID app if you'd like to have a record of your journey in your 'diary'.
Will there be social distancing on the bus?
As per the government's COVID-19 Protection Framework, social distancing is not required on public transport.
What safety measures are you putting in place to ensure passengers are safe during Covid?
We will be following the government's COVID-19 Protection Framework guidelines.
Are you cleaning your buses?
Yes, all buses are being cleaned in line with the Ministry of Health’s guidelines.
Will there be hand sanitiser available on the bus?
Yes, there will be sanitiser on our buses.
Can I still travel if I'm feeling sick?
Please stay home and do not travel if you are sick or have any of the following flu-like symptoms: a cough, high temperature of at least 38c, shortness of breath, sore throat, sneezing and runny nose or a temporary loss of smell. For more information see covid19.govt.nz.
Why do you stop at cafes which don't allow unvaccinated people inside?
We choose our rest stops for several reasons including driver hours, the distance between rest stops, and the facilities available there for our passengers. On some routes we travel through rural or remote regions where there are not many options for rest stops.
Can my child still travel if they haven't been vaccinated? Do they have to wear a mask?
Yes, children can still travel on board our services. Children aged under 12 years are not required to wear a mask.
My child is travelling as an unaccompanied minor and therefore is unvaccinated. Will they be seated away from other adult passengers?
We do endeavour to seat unaccompanied minors (ages 7-12) in rows 1-5 of standard seating (or the first 1-5 rows of Gold seating if that seat class has been booked). However, this cannot be guaranteed, therefore your child may be seated next to other adult passengers.
What happens if my trip is cancelled due to COVID-19 travel restrictions?
If your trip is cancelled because travel restrictions mean we can't operate your service, your booking will be refunded. Please be patient as our team works to notify affected customers and process refunds.
I’m booking a ticket for someone else, but I would like to use my InterCity Rewards account. Can they still travel if the ticket is under my name?
No – as stated in our terms and conditions, only the person named on the ticket is permitted to travel.
My first name and surname are the same in the InterCity tracking/passenger app. Will this be an issue?
Please contact our call centre and we will happily correct your name in our booking system.
Will I need to provide either a My Vaccine Pass or evidence of a negative COVID test under the traffic light setting?
No, there are no restrictions.
Are your Auckland agents open to make bookings?
Yes. You can also book online or call our contact centre between the hours of 7am – 6pm.
Our InterCity sightseeing tours take you to attractions, experiences and venues which are only open to people who are fully vaccinated. For this reason, you can only travel on one of our tours if you have a My Vaccine Pass. Masks are required on board and you must not travel if you're feeling unwell. See below for frequently asked questions.
I am booked on a tour to Milford Sound. Do I have to be vaccinated?
Yes, you do have to be fully vaccinated, as we use third party operators that require all people to be fully vaccinated when entering their premises.
I am travelling from Queenstown to Te Anau and back on an InterCity ticket. Do I have to be vaccinated?
Yes, you do have to be fully vaccinated, as this service is operated on a GreatSights/awesomeNZ tour coach. Unlike our public transport services, on our day tours you must be fully vaccinated.
If I am booked on a tour to Milford Sound, and I am not vaccinated, can I get a full refund?
Yes, you can. If you contact our call centre they can organise this for you.