What is a 2 hour myki fare?

myki has been in place as Melbourne’s public transport ticketing system for over a decade. It has benefits and drawbacks that could take up space for many posts. But in this one I want to focus on answering one apparently difficult question – what exactly is a 2 hour myki fare?

With myki, there are two fare types that you can use with ‘myki money’ – i.e. topping up as you go rather than purchasing a ticket for a fixed period. These are daily and 2 hour.

This is calculated using the times when the system detects your myki card. With myki, you must touch on by tapping your card to a reader every time you start a trip. In most, but not all cases, you also need to touch off.

When PTV introduced 2 hour fares as part of myki there was a grace period built in. This meant that your ticket would be valid for more than two hours – sometimes up to almost three.

Since August 2014, this has been changed to last exactly two hours.

The confusion here mainly lies with when exactly this two hour period begins and ends.

New myki reader at Rosanna Station

As usual, the PTV website is of no help at all. In several places, it states conflicting, incorrect or confusing information when trying to explain. For example:

“2 hour myki money fare between where a customer boards and the zone at the end of the service.Cell [sic]”


“Your first touch on creates a 2 hour fare. If you’re still travelling after 2 hours, you’ll be charged a daily fare.”


This doesn’t really help to answer the question. In fact, the second statement is wrong.

To find the answer, we have to go digging around in the 128-page Victorian Fares and Ticketing Manual.

On page 44 we find:

“Within the zone(s) covered by it, the 2 hour product authorises travel that extends beyond the time of its expiry, as long as the myki is touched on before that expiry, subject to the Conditions in this Chapter.”

Victorian Fares and Ticketing Conditions 2022

What does this mean?

The 2 hour period for your myki fare begins and ends from when you touch on your card, not touching off.

For example, you touch on at 10:00am on a 903 bus at Box Hill. You alight at Northland Shopping Centre at 10:45am. You do some shopping, catch up with friends, contemplate life – whatever. You then catch a bus back to Box Hill and touch on your myki at Northland at 11:45am – so one hour and 45 minutes after you first touched on at Box Hill. So even though this bus arrives back at Box Hill at 12:30pm and you touch off outside of the 2 hour period, you will only be charged a 2 hour fare.

Makes sense? Hopefully that helps to clear things up a little bit. If you still have any questions, let me know in the comments below and I’ll try to help as best as I can.

Note: there are some situations where a 2 hour fare will be valid for longer than two hours – for example, early bird on trains. For the purposes of this post I’m only talking about a ‘regular’ 2 hour fare outside of these exceptions. If you want to know more about these, start on this page on the PTV website: https://www.ptv.vic.gov.au/tickets/myki/travel-with-myki/travel-benefits/


Join the discussion and tell us your opinion.

Paul Nicholsonreply
18 June, 2023 at 9:47 am

I believe that method works on a long single trip such as one I do sometimes on my beloved 901: from Ringwood to Melbourne Airport. The continuous journey is more than two hours. So I tend to touch off and touch back on again in the general vicinity of Greensborough. Mind you: I reckon I am one of the few, when riding suburban buses in Melbourne, that touches on and one of the even fewer that touches off!

Andrew Ceereply
18 June, 2023 at 1:44 pm

Interesting. So you could travel by train to Lilydale and as long as you boarded the train back within two hours of touching on at Flinders Street, you would only be charged a two hour fare.

18 June, 2023 at 9:09 pm
– In reply to: Andrew Cee

That’s right! If it charged you anything more automatically then you could appeal it for sure.

23 August, 2023 at 11:17 am

I am travelling from flinders to ascot vale in tram 57 . So I touched on at 10 Am – 5 dollar deducted . Now I reach ascot ale around 10:30 , finish my work by 11 and boarded a tram back around 11:10 . Do I need to touch on ? If not if a ticket checker come will it be an offence ? Can I say that I am travelling within 2 hours . Or do I need to always touch on and myki will do the time calculation ? I am so confused about touch on and touch off . It’s very complicated .

7 October, 2023 at 10:53 pm
– In reply to: Deepa

Hi Deepa, you always need to touch on whenever you get on board a new vehicle or enter a new station. In the scenario that you’ve described, assuming you mean 11:10am, you will not be charged a daily fare. You will only be charged a 2 hour fare, even if the tram journey goes past 12pm. Hope that helps!

17 October, 2023 at 7:45 am

Hello, I am still a little confused because it’s only a situation for a returning trip. What happens if I touch on 3 times a day? Say I touch on at 11:15, touch off at 11:30, touch on again at 12:35, touch off at 12:50, then touch on again at 4 pm on a different tram then touch off at 4:30, will that deduct a full day fare?

9 November, 2023 at 4:23 pm

The old 3 hr ticket would last to the hour, if your ticket was clipped at 9.02 am, it would last to 1 pm. There was no grace period with the introduction of 2hr tickets. It simply followed the old rules. Tap on at 9.02am ticket last to midday. Now tap on at 9.02am, ticket for me on a 25 minute train journey means if i swipe at 11.00 am, ticket will last until 11.25am.

David Sidwellreply
17 January, 2024 at 5:15 pm

Thanks for this. I was confused as I had just gone over the 2 hours (yesterday, before I found this post). I had done the final Touch Off 2 hours and 3 minutes after the first Touch On. So I had assumed, ‘Full Day’ but I checked today and it was 1) confirmed as being 2:03 duration and yet 2) just ‘2 hours’ fare. I had assumed they had a buffer, or grace period, of a few minutes. So if my train was (say) 5 minutes late and it pushed me 3 mins beyond 2:00 duration, it wouldn’t be $ penalty on me. I’d assume if they DID have this, it would be written in weasle-words, like ‘reasonable’ cf a hard humber. Are we sure it’s not this?

26 January, 2024 at 11:17 am

Thank you! That’s the information I wss looking for! Thank you for your help

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