Fullers are stars again – please look and learn AT!

Jan 29, 2014
Fullers  are stars again  – please look and learn AT!

BarbC

[We declare an interest for this blog, as Fullers and its Waiheke Bus Company are long term friends and sponsors of Cycle Action Auckland. At the same time, I vow that the campaign illustrated here was created without prompting from Cycle Action.]

We were shown the fun, fresh graphic imagery and text used for the promotion, and readily agreed to add our logo to show our support.

Fullers bus it bike it walk itFullers’ busy and expanding Matiatia ferry service competes with Sealink’s vehicle ferry service connecting from the city to Putiki Bay on Waiheke. We’re aware this is a factor in this promotion. We happily agree both services are vital to meet growing public transport demands and the economic needs of businesses on Waiheke.

This blog and Fullers’ campaign highlight that many people from the city bring cars to Waiheke when they don’t need to. They may do it because they are dependent on cars in the city and think the same will apply on Waiheke. But the truth is that Waiheke is best enjoyed by buses, cycling and walking, and that it is a chance to have a new experience that may open your eyes to trying a different mode of transport in town as well.

Buses meet and return to every Matiatia ferry – they are well used by locals, so it’s a chance to learn about good eateries, beaches etc while getting into the laid back pace of island life. Special excursion buses run all summer linking up beaches, vineyards, olive groves etc. Some even take visitors to the crazy mayhem of the huge flocks of roosters at the recreation park. Standard and electric bikes are available for hire, (50 ‘e’ bikes were hired for touring in the rain last Sunday!)

And Waiheke’s network of walks to beaches, private bays and bush are simply spectacular – better than any other part of Auckland. Taxis with great local drivers are also on hand if you need a car at short notice.

Many of the roads on Waiheke are narrow, steep and  windy. They are not built for the volume of extra cars that visitors bring for their summer holidays (why are so many of them black SUV’s?). These vehicles cause traffic jams and noise that locals don’t have for the rest of the year. But as an everyday cyclist on the island, I can honestly report that for the first year ever, visitors in cars were a lot more courteous to me  as I headed home laden from the market or off for my morning coffee. So I firmly recommend hiring a standard or ‘e’ bike to enjoy the fresh air, smells of bush, newly baked bread and ground coffee, and sounds of the waves and bird song. You won’t get these if you travel by car.

Extra cars can’t help but spoil the island ambience for other visitors who make the wise and friendly choice to leave their cars at home, and travel island style. So, we applaud Fullers for their clever and fun integrated transport campaign. Imagine if AT could do this more often for weekend and public holidays in Auckland (once our trains are running again at these times).

We welcome the Ciclovia planned for Sat 8th Feb and hope it’s the start of a move to close off roads more often on the waterfront, and celebrate how much fun it is to get around our city by PT, bikes and legs!

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Bike Auckland is the non-profit organisation working to improve things for people on bikes. We’re a people-powered movement for a better city. We speak up for you – and the more of us there are, the stronger our voice!

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