Backpacker transport is both abundant and affordable in Australia. There are many ways to get around and see the country. Some are better value than others and some give you more freedom. In the end it is up to you to decide the best way in which to travel depending on your financial situation, time constraints and what you would like to see.
The most ideal methods of backpacker transport have been outlined in the sections below:
Hiring a Car:
This is a great option if youíre only travelling a short distance and donít have the time or funds to buy a car. Hiring gives you the freedom to go wherever you want in your own time and in a reliable vehicle. The costs are reasonable and petrol is cheaper compared to the UK, so itís definitely an option to be considered.
You can enrol at Medicare offices throughout Australia. If you receive treatment before you enrol, Medicare benefits will be back paid for eligible visitors.
Keep an eye out for the $1 relocation deals. Occasionally, hire companies need someone to return their vehicles to them. They will give you a reasonable timeframe in which to do this, so you will be able to make a few stops along the way and all you will have to pay for is the petrol! Check the rental companiesí websites or give them a ring to see if they are currently offering any relocation deals.
Good Australian hire companies:
Buying Your Own Car:
Perhaps the best way to see and experience the country is to buy your own transport. You can go anywhere you want and stop when you want to. You can save lots of money just by staying in campsites rather than hostels.
Of course itís not as straightforward as handing over the money, jumping in the driverís seat and heading off. There are legalities and paperwork to get sorted first. But the time and effort you put into it, is definitely worth the ultimate freedom
This is probably the cheapest form of public transport used by backpackers wanting to explore the most popular Australian destinations. The East and south coast of Australia are particularly well catered for by bus companies. Other, more remote towns are more costly to travel to.
Greyhound is the main bus company. It goes to all the main cities with various stops in between. You can either pay for your destination ticket up front or you can buy a kilometre pass, which allows you to stop when and where you want on the way to your destination.
If you want to meet loads of like-minded people and want to see and party lots, then you could opt for a tour. The most well known of the backpackerís tours is Oz Experience, its main route is up or down the east coast but it does cover the whole of Australia. Even though it is technically a tour bus, it is flexible, allowing you to stay as long as you want at various stops on the journey.
Travelling by train is another way to make your way around Australia and if you have a backpackerís discount card such as VIP or YHA then it can also be a very affordable option. You can buy unlimited travel for 6 months from as little as $450. You get more comfort travelling by train than you do by bus. You can get up and walk around, thereís video entertainment, access to food and even shower facilities.
Domestic Australian flights are great way of covering long distances in a short time. There are airports and airstrips in all of the major cities and in many of the smaller towns too. Prices have come down a lot since more competitive flight companies have entered the market but there still arenít many choose from. Check on their websites for the most up to date information.