Taupo – Auckland travel options

When travelling between places, people have different priorities.

Taupo is located about 276 km from Auckland’s downtown. To get between Taupo and Auckland there are several transportation options. This post tries to rank options, considering the frequency, time and cost of each, to choose the best transportation option, as summarised below.


Mode Frequency Time Cost Score


Bus 4 per day (2) 4 h 10 min (3) $10-$26 (1) 2+3+1= 6


Air 3 per day (3) 2 h 10 min (1) $95-$225 (2)

3+1+2= 6


Car On demand (1) 3 h 35 min (2) $152-$330 (3)

1+2+3= 6


1. By Bus – note travel time is over 30 minutes more than by private car.

Frequency – 4 buses direct through Hamilton by Intercity and Naked Bus

Time – 4h 10 min – 5 h 40 min.

Here are the links to Intercity and Naked Bus, to see how timings very.

The cost is low – $10 to $26


2. Air travel or drive-fly-bus (a mix of modes).

Frequency – Air New Zealand provides up to 3 flights per day.

Time – Arrive 30 minutes before flight, plus 50 minutes flying time, plus 50 minutes Bus to CBD equals 2 hours 10 minutes

Note:  Auckland airbus  transfers take approximately 40-60 min. Times can vary depending on traffic conditions. Please allow 1 hour travel time.

Cost – $79 to $209 for flight plus $16 airport bus to Auckland downtown, equals $95 to $225 (car parking is free at Taupo airport).


3. By Car

Frequency – Can be troublesome during rush hour and parking can be difficult and expensive

Time – Plan on about 3 hours 35 minutes of travel time, though stops and traffic will add to overall time. The most direct route takes you through Cambridge via SH1 then SH1b then back on SH1 at Taupiri.

Cost – The distance is about 276 km, The AA puts the cost between $0.53 to $1.08 per km so the trip will cost between $146 to $298, plus parking which can cost between $6 and $32. This totals $152 at a minimum and may be up to $330

Category: News, Transportation

2 comments on “Taupo – Auckland travel options

  1. Might i suggest rather than the airbus for travel between auckland and its airport use of the train (to onehunga or papatoetoe) and the 380 bus. With a hop card its much cheaper than the airbus although it does take a bit longer.

  2. Interesting intercity also recommends the 380 bus, even for passengers transferring at sky city bus terminal
    “ Book bus travel to Auckland International Airport or Auckland Domestic Airport with InterCity. To book your journey, simply select either Auckland International Airport or Auckland Domestic Airport from the stops in our booking form. Your booking will include travel to Manukau City where you will then transfer onto the bright orange “380” bus (we include the cost of this bus transfer in your ticket price).”

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