Traveling in Australia
Airplane: due to the enormous extent of the country, a large part of domestic travel is made by air. Australia therefore has a very dense network of flights. The subsidiary Jetstar, a low-cost airline, also belongs to the most important Australian airline, Quantas Airways. Numerous smaller companies fly on regional routes. Some of these small airlines are subsidiaries or business partners of Quantas. In some regions, such as the Outback or islands, your planes are the only means of transport. It is almost always worthwhile to inquire about discounts or special conditions.
Major regional airlines include:
Aero Tropics – flies to Cape York and Torres Strait,
Aeropelican – flies between Newcastle, Inverell, Coona and Sydney,
Air Link – flies to Dubbo, Bourke, Sydney, Bathurst and Mudgee,
Airnorth – operates in Northern Australia between Darwin, Kununurra, Broome and Gove,
Alliance Airlines – charter flights between Brisbane, Mt. Isa, Townsville and Cairns, Brindabella Airlines – flies to Canberra, Albury, Newcastler, Port Macquarie, Coffs Hrbour and Brisbane,
Golden Eagle Airlines – offers flights to Northwest West Australia; flies from Broome to Derby, Fitzroy Crossing and Halls Creek,
Jetstar – flies to all capital cities and the 15 east coast cities between Cairns and Hobart,
Macair – flies throughout western and northern Queensland,
Norfolk Air – flies between Brisbane and Sydney,
O’Connor – flies between Melbourne, Adelaide, Mildura, Mount Gambier, Port Augusta and Whyalla,
OzJet – flies to Norfolk Island from Bisbane and Sydney,
Regional Express – flies to Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Burnie and about 25 other cities in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, and Tasmania
Regional Pacific Airlines – operates between Cairnes, Bamaga and Torres Strait,
Skippers – flies between cities in Western Australia such as Perth, Laverton, Meekatharra and Wiluna,
Skytrans – flies to Cairns, Coen, Aukurun, Cooktown and York Island,
Skywest – flies from Perth to many western cities including Albany, Esperance, Exmouth, Carnavon, Kalgoorlie and Broome as well as Darwin,
Sunshine Express, ferry flights from Brisbane to the Sunshine Coast, Maryborough and Hervey Bay,
Tasair – flies between Devonport and King Island,
Virgin Blue – flies across Australia.
Ship: there is a lot of water in Australia. However, it is not possible to travel the country this way without your own boat. The only noteworthy public transport is offered by TT-Line. The company’s ferries operate regularly between Devonport and Melbourne.
Rail: Long-distance travel by train is only possible in Australia if you like this type of travel, because train journeys are neither cheaper than other options, nor more convenient, nor particularly fast. Nevertheless, some trains are quite comfortable and on some routes rail travelers can enjoy pure romance. Visitors to Australia can experience two of the major rail journeys with the Indian Pacific on the Nullabor Plain and the Gahn from Adelaide to Darwin. They are among the three main routes operated by Great Southern Railways.
Car: According to 800zipcodes, Australia is easy to travel to with your own car. Motorcycles are also popular means of transport, with which even hard-to-reach areas can be easily reached.
Anyone traveling to the Australian outback should definitely have a tow rope, several spare tires and a high-frequency radio with them. A satellite phone could also be useful. Sufficient water supplies are important – five liters per person per day plus coolant in hot weather.
Popular outback routes are the 520-kilometer Birdsville Track from Marree in South Australia to Birdsville in Queensland, the Canning Stock Route, a 1,700-kilometer cattle drive route that runs southwest from Halls Creek to Wilnua in West Australia, and the 660-kilometer Gibb River Road between Derby and Kununurra. Other routes are the Mulligun Highway, the Oodnadatta Track, the Plenty & Sandover Highway, the route through the Simpson Desert, the Strzelecki Track and the Tanami Track from the north of Alice Springs to Halls Creek in West Australia.
Renting a car, motorcycle, off-road vehicle or camper is cheaper than bringing in your own vehicle. Local rental companies often offer good rates. In the case of vehicles from large international providers such as Hertz, Budget or Avis, however, there are usually fewer restrictions on the kilometers traveled.
Personal injury insurance is included in the rental price of vehicles. It is definitely worth taking out additional insurance for property damage in the event of an accident. The safest option is a so-called comprehensive insurance, a combined liability and comprehensive insurance, which in the event of an accident covers both your own and opposing personal and property damage
Bus: Australia’s well-developed bus network is inexpensive and a reliable way to travel around the country. However, if you want to do more than just city trips, you should plan your trip very carefully. Most buses are equipped with air conditioning and toilets; all are non-smoking buses. Small towns have a central bus station, which is usually located at the post office, a kiosk or in a country.
The national bus network is operated by the Australian Greyhound. Tickets bought online are usually a little cheaper. Booking fees apply for ticket purchases over the phone.
However, greyhound tickets cannot be purchased in some regions – such as South Australia, Victoria, parts of New South Wales and north Queensland. In these areas, travelers can take advantage of the offers of local bus companies. Small local bus companies operating on major routes include Crisps’ Coaches (Queensland), Emerald Coaches (Queensland), Firefly Express (between Sydney, Melbourne and Adeleide), Integrity Coach Lines (north of Perth to Port Hedland), Kirkland’s Premier Motor Service (along the east coast between Cairns and Melbourne), Premier Stateliner (services for cities in South Australia), Redline Coaches (Hobart and the north and east coasts of Tasmania), Suncoast Pacific (Queensland), TassieLink (Tasmania),
So-called backpacker buses offer an alternative travel option. They operate across the country on tours organized by various tour operators. However, there are often opportunities to get on or off the routes, for example on buses from the company Oz Experience. The buses are a bit smaller than the usual long-distance buses and the drivers often act as tour guides.
Local transport: metropolitan areas such as Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth have well-developed urban rail networks.
Bicycle: Australia has a lot to offer cyclists. Those who love a leisurely bike tour will get their money’s worth as well as a die-hard mountain biker. Each region of Australia has different scenic attractions to offer.
If you want to take your own bike with you, you should inquire about the regulations of the respective airline. Bicycles can be transported on many buses and trains. It is of course also possible to buy a bike on site and sell it again before leaving.
Bicycle helmets are compulsory across Australia, as are white front and red rear lights. Appropriate clothing – both for heat and cold – as well as sufficient water supplies and spare parts, especially when making trips to the outback, are important.
The national cycling organization is the Bicycle Federation of Australia. Each state and territory also has its own organizations that can provide information and help plan tours. Local organizations are Bicycle Queensland, Bicycle South Australia, Bicycle Tasmania, Bicycle Transportation Alliance in West Australia, Bicycle Victoria, Northern Territory Cycling Association and Pedal Power ACT.