Credit where credit is due
Last week, you may remember that I posted about the new AT HOP, saying that it might be possible for people with a Snapper/HOP to get a free AT HOP. I added a message that I’d sent to Auckland Transport to confirm this.
Today, I have received an email from a “Feedback Coordinator” at Auckland Transport, responding to my enquiries.
Thank you for contacting us about the use of the AT HOP card.
At the outset, we apologise for the delay in response, we have been experiencing a high volume of enquiries.
Registered HOP Snapper customers are entitled to one free AT HOP card. This means you will have an AT HOP card for the trains and you can still use your HOP Snapper card for the buses, once the HOP Snapper is phased out early 2013, you will only need to use your AT HOP card for travel.
For those who don’t have a Snapper HOP card but want a AT HOP card, introductory offers will be made available next week.
You can be updated with further information on the AT HOP card, fares, services and Free AT HOP card by registering here.
I did not expect to be saying this, but I must congratulate Auckland Transport. Not only did they respond in a relatively reasonable timeframe, given I expect I won’t be the only person contacting them about this, they also were very helpful.
Just to add to the information here, for anyone who’s interested, my understanding is the “introductory offers” is $7 per card for cards purchased up to and including November 30th. After that, it will be $10 per card.
With only a few days until the AT HOP goes on sale and just over a week from it being used on trains, it’s a great time for public transport in Auckland. The entire process for the HOP card has been a complete and utter failure. It’s good to see Auckland Transport trying to sort that out now though. Well done, Auckland Transport. You get two thumbs up.
4. AT HOP cards: You may use an AT HOP card to pay for public transport
journeys provided by public transport operators (Public Transport Operators) in
the Auckland region using any of the following System products as available from
time to time (Products):
4.1 HOP Money: stored money value loaded onto an AT HOP card (HOP
Money), which can be used to purchase public transport journeys or
paper tickets for public transport journeys;
4.2 Period Pass: a pass credit loaded onto an AT HOP card allowing you to
have unlimited journeys within a number of days (Period Pass); or
4.3 Pre-paid Trip: a discounted trip credit loaded onto an AT HOP card for
trips over a number of stages for buses and trains or a particular ferry
service (Pre-Paid Trip).
Unfortunately though, I do have to give Auckland Transport the thumbs down – though compared with the above two, this is just a minor point.
Additionally, as part of this whole exercise, I have discovered a website. That website will presumably be made known to the public from Monday – it is www.athop.co.nz. This page has details around the AT HOP card. It’s surprisingly bare right now, but presumably it will be more detailed by Monday. Given the email address used to reply to me was a @athop.co.nz email address, I assuming that services around the AT HOP will be on athop.co.nz and services around the Snapper/HOP will be on the myhop.co.nz website. This is surprising, because myhop.co.nz is registered to Auckland Transport, not Snapper Services or NZ Bus. The registration details are actually exactly the same as athop.co.nz.
Why not just add the AT HOP services to myhop.co.nz? They’ve certainly had long enough to sort this out. This system is designed in such a way that it will almost certainly confuse people even further. Even if they had myhop.co.nz as a page that directed you to, for example, myhop.co.nz/snapper or myhop.co.nz/at depending on which button you clicked. Then you’re directing people to the same website and getting people used to going to the one HOP card website.