Orbus Queenstown to trial real-time bus tracking

Media Release - 24 July 2019

Bus users in Queenstown will have greater certainty about their travel with a new real-time tracking service being run by the Otago Regional Council (ORC) for its Orbus service.

The tracking shows the location of buses via live GPS information on each route in real-time, including time away from upcoming stops.

ORC Transport Team Leader, Julian Phillips, said real-time tracking was a highly sought-after feature for bus users.

“We know there’s real value in being able to see exactly how far away your bus is, so we’re pleased to be able to offer this functionality to Queenstown bus-users on a trial basis.”

The real-time information, provided by TrackAbus, is available on the ORC website. It works on both the desktop and mobile versions of the website.

Bus users can also text for up-to-date information on a particular stop on their bus route.

“For people using the same stop every day, this will be a really quick and convenient way to get information—they can save the number and simply text whenever they need an update, without having to access the website,” said Julian.

To use the text service, simply text “QTN” and the number of the bus stop which is at the bottom of the on-street timetable (e.g. “QTN 09”) to 400. Standard network text charges apply.

The system is live now on a trial basis, said Julian.

“We’re still working out the kinks, but there’s great potential here for a feature that bus users are really keen to have. We’ll be asking people what they think of the real-time tracking and how it could be improved through Orbus QT Facebook in a couple of weeks.”

He said the trial will help with developing real-time tracking for the Orbus Dunedin network.

“We continue to work with other partners to deliver improved digital information to users for more than just Otago, for example the Choice App being developed by the NZ Transport Agency.”

To access Orbus Queenstown real-time tracking, visit http://www.orc.govt.nz/orbusqt and select your route.

From left: ORC Queenstown Senior Public Transport Officer Stephen Patience, Transport Team Leader Julian Phillips, and TrackABus General Manager Chris Mein checking out the real-time tracking in action.

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