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Transports
in Australia

 Transports in Australia: Melbourne is the city with the best public transport in Australia. In Melbourne, trams, trains, and buses are integrated, and you can buy passes for a day, week, or month, offering a good discounts, and you may go around, until the limits of the city with only one ticket. Sydney also has a similar system, with transport tickets and passes working together. Sydney integrates trains, buses; subway’s and ferryboats, and both Sydney and Melbourne, public transport cover much of their cities. Perth is the third best city for public transport, integrating train and bus passes with cheaper prices.

Other cities such as Adelaide, Brisbane and the Gold Coast have an inferior public transport system, especially serving certain suburbs. Some areas you may need to walk long distances to reach a bus stop. The majority of cities offer special passes which are good value for money, with big savings. Students can buy passes for almost half the price by showing their student card. In Sydney, a ticket for 2 zones costs A$ 1,70 for an adult and A$ 0,80 for students. You can also buy weekly passes for 7 days (green travel pass) which gives the right to unlimited trips by bus, train and ferry. The weekly pass costs A$ 40 adult, or A$ 20 student. All public transport is divided into "routes" and there is a board showing the bus schedule and times of each route, which is usually pretty reliable. However, travelling by car is still the preferred method of transport for the majority of people, because of this; cities such as Sydney and Melbourne can have days of chaotic transit with kilometric jams.

Bicycles are also an excellent option to cover short distances. They are not very expensive and a good new bike may cost around A$ 200, and a used one for around half this price. For international students, it is a great way to go from home to their course at uni, or simply to circulate the city. Most parts of the city are plain and not very hilly, which makes it easy and pleasant to go for a ride. In Australia, bicycles are considered vehicles and people must use helmets. There are exclusive Bike-lanes in all the cities, but you may be allowed to use pedestrian walk and roads (however in certain express ways as motorways, bicycles are forbidden). However, if you are riding on the sidewalk, you must give priority to the pedestrian (the permission to use side walk by bike may be different from state to state and needs to be confirmed with the department of transports in the state you are located). Adults going to work or for leisure, frequently use bicycles, and almost all high school students use bikes to get to school and back.

Taxis are expensive costing starting from at least $2,50 initially plus A$ 1,50 for every km travelled. In most Australian cities, a taxi trip between the airport and downtown will cost about A$ 50. Taxis are frequently used at night for people who are going to drink in nightclubs or parties, and cannot drive back home. Usually to use a taxi service you have to call to get one sent to your location. It is very rare to get an empty taxi running around the city, Taxi stands are usually found in front of tourist places and Shopping Centres. Almost all Pubs have a public telephone outside with direct lines to call a taxi.  Taxi drivers are respectful and well trained. It is not a common practice in Australia to give a tip over the trip price however if the passenger offers the change the taxi driver will appreciate it.

Interstate buses: The Greyhound Pioneer Australia (tel. 13 20 30). operates bus trips between the main cities of Australia. It offers passes with several options for number of days allowing some stops.

Trains: In Australia there are 3 types of trains: a local network that travels small distances throughout the city, An interstate line that travels between states and two trains lines that travel crossing the country for tourists, which are a bit more expensive. The interstate trains are extremely comfortable and are always on schedule. The main train company’s are: in NSW, QLD e WA  (this last one only operates in the West of Australia.) More about travelling by train at located in our tourism pages turism by train in Australia.

Domestic Flights: Virgin Blue e Jetstar operate flights between the big Australian cities with very affordable tariffs, (normally, the purchase has to be made online.) With the "Budget Companies," the food and drink on board are not great and are charged separately, but nothing hinders you from taking your own lobster grilled with butter for the flight. A QANTAS is the Australian airline (Jet Star is apart of QANTAS). They offer flights to the main Australian cities, but with normal prices (sometimes  there are promotions available). QANTAS offers a Boomerang Pass, which is an aerial pass to travel between cities, but can only be bought outside Australia. Do not forget that many airports in Australia charge a departure tax of approximately $ 30.

Important note about connections: A lot of people buy international tickets to Australia stopping at Sydney and also buy internal flights through the internet, with cheaper airlines such as Virgin Blue or Jet Star to go to another Australian destination such as Brisbane or the Gold Coast. Be aware that you must change from international to domestic airports. Some international flights to Australia are very long and with many stops during its way, and is not rare to be delayed of up to 3 hours. So when buying domestic tickets, it is better to leave a long break for the connection, otherwise you may lose the flight, as these cheap tickets do not offer reimbursement or an alternative flight times. If you lose the flight, the ticket is not valid any more and you will need to buy another one. This has happened with many people. Make sure you also pay attention to the allowed maximum luggage weight in domestic flights, which are, much less than on international flights.

Public transports in Australia are getting smaller year after year.

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