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Owner Public Transport Victoria
Locale Melbourne
Transit type Bus
Number of lines 13
Began operation May 1993
Ended operation 27 December 2015
Operator(s) Dyson's Bus Services
McKenzie's Tourist Services
Ventura Bus Lines
Headway 30 minutes
System map


The NightRider was a network of bus services in Melbourne, Australia. It operated on weekends and for special events from the Melbourne City Centre to the outer suburbs on 13 routes, with over 300 stops between 01:30 (00:00 on the Doncaster route) and 04:30 on Saturdays and 05:30 on Sundays. NightRider ceased operation on 27 December 2015, being replaced by Night Network's Night Bus services which commenced operation in 2016.[1]


The NightRider network was launched in May 1993 with nine routes all originating in Swanston Street.[2]

In November 2008, the NightRider network was overhauled. The logo and branding were replaced, and operators of several routes changed. New routes commenced to Doncaster, Healesville and Cranbourne. Frequencies were increased from 60 to 30 minutes. Due to Metro Trains Melbourne now running until 01:00, the first services were revised to depart at 01:30 instead of 00:30 on most services.

Route numbers were issued by Metlink for the first time (previously some operators did display them on buses) and are all in the 900 series, with the numbers corresponding to the predominant route number allocations at the outer termini. For example, many buses in the Dandenong area are in the 800s, hence the number 980 and 981 was allocated to them.


Buses ran half-hourly from 01:30 (00:00 on Doncaster route 961) to 04:30 on Saturdays and 05:30 on Sundays on the following routes:[3]

Route From To Via Operator Notes
Swanston Street City St Albans Footscray, Sunshine & Deer Park Dyson's Bus Services Some services extend to Sunbury
Deer Park Melton Rockbank Dyson's Bus Services
Swanston Street City Werribee Spotswood, Newport & Hoppers Crossing Dyson's Bus Services
Swanston Street City Craigieburn Moonee Ponds, Essendon & Broadmeadows Dyson's Bus Services
Swanston Street City Epping Brunswick, Coburg & Preston Dyson's Bus Services
Swanston Street City Eltham Fitzroy, Northcote & Heidelberg Dyson's Bus Services
Swanston Street City Doncaster Bulleen & Templestowe Dyson's Bus Services Service commences at 00:00 and runs to 04:30
on Saturdays and 05:30 on Sundays
Lilydale Healesville Yarra Glen, Woori & Yallock McKenzie's Tourist Services
Swanston Street City Croydon Balwyn, Box Hill & Lilydale Ventura Bus Lines
Swanston Street City Belgrave South Yarra, Glen Waverley & Westfield Knox Ventura Bus Lines
Swanston Street City Mornington St Kilda, Mentone & Frankston Ventura Bus Lines
Swanston Street City Dandenong Prahran, Monash University & Springvale Ventura Bus Lines Connects with 981 at Dandenong
Dandenong Cranbourne Narre Warren, Berwick & Hampton Park Ventura Bus Lines Connects with 980 at Dandenong

Ticketing Information[edit]

Originally fares were set at a flat $5 regardless of distance travelled.[2] From March 2007 standard Metcard tickets have become accepted on the service.[4]

Buses are labelled with a large NightRider logo, and text saying "NightRider - The after midnight bus service".


  1. ^ "Night Bus". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 23 December 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Night Rider" Australian Bus Panorama issue 8/9 June 1993 page 32
  3. ^ "NightRider buses". Public Transport Victoria. Retrieved 25 May 2013. 
  4. ^ Media Release: "Nightrider Now Included in Metcard Fare" Department of Premier & Cabinet 2 March 2007

External links[edit]