Disability assistance dogs

Disability assist dogs can travel for free on all Metlink trains, buses, harbour ferries and taxis at any time of the day, when accompanied by their disabled handler or someone involved with their training. This is specified under the Dog Control Act 1996.

Customers are expected to offer passengers with assistance dogs priority seats and are expected to give up priority seats if asked. Assistance dogs must sit on the floor beside you or under your seat, not on a seat or on your lap. Assistance dogs are not required to be in pet carriers like domestic pets.

A disability assist dog is a dog certified by a recognised organisation as a dog trained or being trained to assist a person with a disability. Handlers must be able to provide a form of identification to Metlink staff from one of the registered organisations below:

  • Blind Foundation
  • Hearing Dogs for Deaf People New Zealand
  • Mobility Assistance Dogs Trust
  • New Zealand Epilepsy Assist Dogs Trust
  • Top Dog Companion Trust
  • Assistance Dogs New Zealand
  • Perfect Partners Assistance Dogs Trust

Taking domestic pets on public transport

Under the new Conditions of Carriage you are able to take your pet on Metlink trains and bus services during off-peak times.

Domestic pets are allowed to travel during off-peak times on all Metlink trains, buses and harbour ferries as long as they are fully enclosed in a suitable pet carrier - not just a bag or backpack. The pet carrier must be stored securely in the available space for luggage or on the passenger’s lap. The good news is your pet travels for free.

Other things to be aware of:

  • Domestic pets and their owners, like everyone else, must give up priority seating to those who need it, including those with a disability, the elderly, caregivers with prams or small children, and pregnant mothers
  • Your pet is your responsibility, including getting on and off the bus, train or ferry
  • You can only take your pet during off peak times (9:00am to 3:00pm and after 6:30pm during week days, and all day weekends and public holidays)
  • If the vehicle is crowded, Metlink staff can ask you to wait for the next service
  • If your pet is disrupts other customers you may be asked to get off at the next stop or station
  • Pets are not permitted on ferries travelling to Matiu/Somes Island as this is a wildlife sanctuary
  • It is dangerous for pets, owners and other customers if pets are not on a lead on train platforms, in station carparks, or at bus stops

Last published: Thursday, February 8, 2024 at 6:22 AM