The Total Mobility scheme helps people with serious mobility constraints access subsidised door-to-door transport through approved transport providers based in Tauranga, Rotorua and Whakatāne.

Eligible scheme members present their Total Mobility photo identity card and vouchers to receive a 50% discount on door to door travel up to a maximum of $25 per trip (50% discount on $50 full fare).

To join the scheme applicants are assessed by approved assessment agencies. All agencies charge a fee for this service, please check what their assessment or membership fee(s) are.

The assessment process identifies whether your mobility constraint means you cannot manage any one or more of these components of a journey:

  • Getting to the place from where the transport departs.
  • Getting onto the transport.
  • Riding securely.
  • Getting off the transport.
  • Getting to the final destination.

How do I apply for a Total Mobility card?

Contact a Total Mobility assessment agency to discuss eligibility and arrange an assessment

The assessment agency representative will talk through the assessment process and if appropriate arrange a suitable time to meet with a trained assessor.

Who are Total Mobility transport providers?

The following companies provide Total Mobility services in the Bay of Plenty:

Tauranga

  • Tauranga Taxis - phone 07 578 6086 *
  • NZ Cabs - phone 07 577 0304 *
  • Kuber Taxis - 07 218 1718

Rotorua

  • Rotorua Taxi Society Ltd. - phone 0800 500 000 *
  • Taxi Cabs Rotorua - phone 07 347 9797 *

Eastern Bay of Plenty

  • Dial A Cab - phone 07 308 0222 *

* Taxis fitted with wheelchair hoists are available in Whakatane, Tauranga and Rotorua.

Frequently asked questions

Here are some answers to frequent questions regarding Total Mobility.

Anyone with a disability living in the Bay of Plenty can apply for membership to the Total Mobility Scheme. You can apply by using our standard membership application form and be assessed by an assessor registered with Council.

You can only apply for membership through one of the support agencies taking part in the scheme (an accredited agency). Accredited agencies make sure that all forms are completed correctly and returned to Council. For a photo ID card, you must give the assessor one recent head and shoulders passport size photograph and a $6.50 card fee. We will return any incomplete forms to the accredited agencies for more information.

We maintain a database of people eligible to use the scheme.

All applicants must be registered with Bay of Plenty Regional Council before they are given Total Mobility taxi vouchers.

In an appeal situation, the Total Mobility Management Committee makes the final decision if a person is eligible for membership of the scheme.

Council does not charge applicants a membership fee to join the scheme. Some agencies may charge the applicant a fee for joining their organisation, or charge a one off fee for assessment and registration of the applicant. Any fees to meet the agency's costs are to be paid directly to the agency by the applicant. The cost of a photo ID card is in addition to the agency's fees and is payable to us.

The assessment usually takes place at the support agency office or in the applicant’s home. Visits to places like hospitals and rest homes can also be arranged. The assessment lasts about 20-30 minutes and includes taking a head and shoulders photo for the Total Mobility identification card.

The application will be processed as quickly as possible. We will contact both the applicant and agency when we receive the forms.

As soon as the application has been processed, the client will be contacted and told of the outcome of the application in writing. Successful applicants will receive a photo ID card. The agency can then supply the registered client with taxi vouchers. It will take approximately two weeks to register a successful applicant and issue a photo ID card.

All information given through the application process will be held in a database by Council.

We will make sure  all names and personal information remain private and confidential. Internal access to the database will be restricted to appropriate  Council staff only. The officers able to access the information will be the Land Transport Manager, Transport Planner and administration staff dealing with Total Mobility. Information technology officers will have access for data security purposes only.

We collect statistical information to report on the Total Mobility Scheme and to plan for its future. Statistical information will be held in a separate database from the information that is used to assess the applicant's eligibility for membership. It will not identify the applicant as an individual.

A private company will process the photo ID card. The company that produces the card will need to scan the applicant's photo into computer memory for production and reproduction of cards and will need to keep a record of the application form.

Applicants may need to show evidence of their disability if the assessor isn't familiar with the applicant's disability history. If this is the case, the assessor will ask the applicant's permission to find out more information about the disability. The applicant should give the assessor the name of their caregiver, ACC assessor, GP, specialist, physiotherapist, psychiatrist, social worker or occupational therapist.  Refusal to cooperate with the assessor may prevent the assessor from completing the assessment and not allow the applicant to take part in the scheme.

You will be assessed as having either a permanent or a temporary disability. If you qualify for Total Mobility and are assessed as having a permanent disability, you will be registered as a 'life-member' of the scheme and will be given a photo ID card that only has to be renewed every five years.

If you are assessed as having a temporary disability and qualify for Total Mobility, you will be registered as a temporary member. You will be issued with a temporary photo ID card and given a date for reassessment. A month before the due date of your reassessment, you will be sent a reminder. Unless your registration is extended, your registration and temporary photo ID card and will expire five working days after your reassessment date. If your temporary registration is extended you will be issued with a replacement card. This process may be repeated as often as necessary.

Total Mobility taxi vouchers may only be used for journeys that are not covered by travel income or assistance from another official source. Using vouchers while on other financial assistance ('double-dipping') is not allowed.

Applicants that receive travel income or assistance from another official source must say if they receive general financial assistance, or what journeys they receive financial assistance for.

Note: Applicants that receive general financial assistance may not be eligible for Total Mobility at all.

You can get voucher books from your accredited disability support agency. Each agency should have a contact person who can give voucher books to members or clients as needed. The agency can get supplies of vouchers from the Total Mobility Coordinator at Bay of Plenty Regional Council at any time during working hours, or by calling 0800 884 880.

When you book the taxi, let them know you will be using a Total Mobility scheme voucher to pay for part of your trip. To make the trip easier you can fill out parts of the voucher before you get in the cab, then at the end of the journey show the driver your Total Mobility ID card.  The driver will check your identity and calculate your fare subsidy then, if necessary, assist you to complete the voucher.

You need a voucher to get the Total Mobility discount. Each voucher must be filled out correctly. Record details of the taxi journey, the cost of the fare and the discount.
 
The general rule is: one trip, one voucher.

A return trip in the same taxi (a trip from origin to destination and back to the point of origin) is counted as two trips. This rule can be waived in certain circumstances, but only by prior arrangement with Council. When two or more people with disabilities share the same taxi, only one voucher should be used for the trip.

The restrictions on the use of the scheme are as follows:

  • Vouchers can't be used for inter-regional travel, such as for journeys from the Bay of Plenty to another region.
  • Vouchers can't be used in the course of your employment. However they can be used to get to and from work.
  • Vouchers can't be used where transport-related financial assistance is available from another official source.
  • The maximum discount payable for a single journey has been increased from $20 to $25, 50 percent of a $50 fare from 1 August 2013.
  • Other than the need to comply with the above restrictions, vouchers can be used on any taxi journey, at any time. There is no other restriction on the purpose of any individual trip taken under the scheme, the frequency of use or the distance travelled.

Under special circumstances, and with the prior approval of Council, the restrictions on the use of the scheme for inter-regional travel and the maximum discount available for a single journey, may be waived.

Where suitable arrangements have been made with other regional councils, the use of local vouchers in other towns and cities throughout the country, is allowed. Check with Council before you go.

The date, details of the trip you plan to make and number of passengers should be filled out while waiting for the taxi. The origin and destination of the journey should be fairly specific: a street address (364 Fraser St, 153 Rogers Rd, etc) or a well-known landmark (Bayfair, Polytech, Pak 'n' Save, Hospital, etc.).

At the end of the journey fill out the fare and discount amounts, sign the voucher and hand it over to the taxi driver. The driver will fill in their cab numbers, name and taxi company and will apply the fare tariff for that trip. There's no reason why your family, friends, caregivers etc (able-bodied or not) can't share the taxi with you, but the person using the voucher must be in the vehicle for the entire journey. If you have any difficulty filling out the voucher, or your disability makes it difficult for you to write or sign your name, the taxi driver will be pleased to help.

Council staff check all vouchers when they are presented for payment and carry out random audits on their use, and query anything unusual. We won't refund discounts on any vouchers that haven't been filled out completely or correctly. Any vouchers for trips that don't follow the rules of the scheme won't be refunded either.

Total Mobility is available in many other towns and cities, some regions use a swipe card instead of vouchers so let the transport provider know you’ll be paying for part of the fare using ‘out of town’ Total Mobility vouchers.

See more information about Total Mobility in other regions.

All trips are subject to the maximum subsidy applied in the region you visit.

It is generally accepted that driver training is needed to be certain a good quality service is maintained and that taxi operators are conscious of and responsive to the difficulties that people with disabilities face.

Council has a DVD training resource made by NZ Transport Agency for people involved in transporting passengers with disabilities.

If you are not satisfied with the service given by the taxi company, you should contact the taxi company first. Otherwise call the Total Mobility Coordinator on 0800 884 880.

It's important that all parties involved in the Total Mobility scheme are seen to be following the policies and rules of the scheme. Any user or taxi company who does not runs the risk of not being able to be part of the scheme.

As registered member of the Total Mobility Scheme you accept the following conditions of use:

1. You must be a current registered member of the Total Mobility Scheme to use Total Mobility vouchers.

2. You must show your Total Mobility photo identification card to the driver every time you use a Total Mobility service.

3. You must not allow anyone else to use your Total Mobility photo identification card and you must ensure your driver returns your card every time you use it.

4. You are required to use vouchers in combination with your Total Mobility photo identification card.

5. You must pay your share of the fare. The maximum amount that Council will pay is $25.00 - that is 50% of the total fare of $50.00.

6. If your card is lost or stolen you must report it to the Total Mobility Coordinator as soon as possible by calling 0800 884 880.

7. You may be liable for prosecution for fraudulent use or abuse of the Total Mobility photo identification card or Total Mobility Scheme which will result in your access to the scheme being withdrawn.

8. You will notify the Total Mobility Coordinator or Total Mobility agency of any change of circumstances that may affect your eligibility for the Total Mobility Scheme.

9. You will not use vouchers as part of your employment, however they can be used to get to or from work.

10. You cannot use Total Mobility vouchers for inter-regional travel.

11. Total Mobility vouchers can be used on any taxi journey at any time, with no restriction on the purpose of any individual trip, frequency of use or distance travelled.

12. You cannot use a taxi driver who is a family member of yours, or known personally to you. This includes extended family.

13. You must notify the Total Mobility Coordinator on 0800 884 880 if you receive travel related financial assistance from another organisation or travel is being part-paid for by another organisation.

You can find out more information about the scheme by contacting the Total Mobility Coordinator on 0800 884 880.

If you need more information about the Total Mobility scheme, contact us.