This scheme provides financial help for people who have high travel costs due to distance or frequent visits to a medical specialist or disability service. Renal dialysis patients may also qualify for assistance. National travel assistance(external link) is funded by the Ministry of Health. For more information contact the travel coordinator at your local District Health Board.
You can use your SuperGold Card to travel free on off-peak public transport services in many areas in New Zealand. For most of the country, the off-peak hours are between 9am to 3pm and from 6:30pm to the end of service on weekdays, and any time on weekends and public holidays. In the Auckland region you can travel for free on Auckland's scheduled public transport services after 9am weekdays, all day weekends and public holidays. See SuperGold (external link)website for more information on using your SuperGold Card on public transport
Transport to clinics and medical appointments can sometimes be publicly-funded through District Health Boards (DHBs). Contact your local DHB(external link) or visit their website to see if this service is provided.
The Total Mobility Scheme(external link) reduces the cost of taxi travel for people assessed as unable to use public transport because of permanent disability. Those eligible hold an identity card. A number of disability organisations such as Alzheimer's, Stroke Foundation, Age Concern and others assess for eligibility. Costs for the assessment and identity card varies and not all agencies make home visits.
Drivers over the age of 75 have to renew their licence every two to five years. A medical certificate is required at the time of renewal and if recommended by a doctor, there is also a 30-minute On-road Safety Test. For information for drivers over 75 years of age, contact NZ Transport Agency(external link) on 0800 822 422.
Mobility parking permits(external link) enable people with disabilities to park in reserved spaces close to their destination, or park longer than the stated time in some standard car parks and metered spaces. The scheme is run by CCS Disability Action.
This annual subscription covers emergency ambulance call-out charges anywhere in New Zealand. The St John Supporter Scheme(external link) does not cover transport on discharge from hospital, transfer from one hospital to another, or transport to clinic appointments. Phone 0800 785 646
A Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) Disability Allowance(external link) can be paid to help meet the costs of an elderly disabled person’s transport to and from a day care centre, doctor, specialist, hospital or counsellor. A health practitioner must verify that the costs are additional, ongoing, and directly related to the person's disability. This certificate is included in the Disability Allowance Application Form. The allowance is means tested.
The Special Disability Allowance(external link) can help meet the costs of visiting your spouse or partner if they are receiving a residential care subsidy or have been in hospital or a rest home for over 13 weeks. You must be on NZ Super or a benefit to receive the allowance.
For further information on transport options, including companies offering wheelchair access taxis and modified vehicles, visit the Firstport website(external link).