A multi-regional bus ticketing system - aimed at making paying for buses easier for thousands of users - has been delayed by two years and blown $3.5 million over budget.

The new Regional Integrated Ticketing System, similar to Auckland Transport's Hop card, was due to be rolled out to nine regions in mid-2018. But an "over ambitious project timeline" for designing and testing the system has meant the project is unlikely to be rolled out across the nine regions until April 2020.

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And it may only be in use for six years before it is replaced by a national public

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