Transport in Australia

Road Rules

Motor Vehicles are right hand drive and are driven on the left-hand side of the road.     Australian states and territories use two “default” speed limits.  These apply automatically in the absence of posted speed restriction signs.  The two default speed limits are:
  • within built up areas, 50km/h, except the Northern Territory which remains at 60km/h.
  • outside built up areas, 100km/h; with the exception of Western Australia and Northern Territory which are 110km/h.  Speed limit rules vary from state to territory but the maximum speed limit for the vast majority of Australian dual-lane carriageways is 110km/h.  The one exception is a 300km stretch of road in the Northern Territory that is marked as unrestricted and carries no speed limit.
School zones are variable speed zones, with a 40km/h limit applying during gazetted school terms and specific times of the day when children are expected to be present.  In South Australia, the limit is 25km/h. As a rule, speeding laws are heavily enforced, and the tolerance for speeding over the limit is as little as 2km/h; you can, therefore, be fined for travelling at 52km/h in a 50km/h zone. Speed zones are marked with black characters within a red circle on a white sign.

Seat Belts & Child Restraints

It is a requirement that all passengers in a vehicle wear a seatbelt. The driver is liable for all seat belt infringement penalties, including passengers and children. Seat belt laws are uniform around Australia and require the driver and all passengers to be properly restrained, including children.

Purchasing a New or Used Motor Vehicle

Whether purchasing a vehicle from a dealer or a private seller, the best place to begin a search is over the internet. The largest and most popular websites are: Advertised car prices, whether through a dealer or private seller, do not include costs associated with transfer of the vehicle such as registration transfer fees and stamp duty.

Registration of a Motor Vehicle

Registration requirements vary between the states, but generally involve identification documents (passport) and a driver’s licence (be sure it is an English language one or international driver’s licence), receipt of sale and a roadworthy certificate. Payment of a transfer fee and stamp duty is also required. When purchasing from a private seller, it is important to ensure the purchase includes a Roadworthy Certificate (pink slip) as improvements may need to be made in order for the vehicle to pass inspection. When purchasing from a car dealership, the dealer will make arrangements for registration paperwork, roadworthy certificates and Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance. Payment of registration is now available with 3, 6 and 12-month options.

Public Transport

Public transport in the capital cities is generally good and relatively affordable. There are more limited options in rural areas. Roads are the main method of transport in Australia.
City Integrated Network Name Buses Urban Rail Light Rail Watercraft
Adelaide Adelaide Metro Limited
Brisbane Translink
Canberra Transport Canberra Limited
Darwin Limited
Hobart Metro
Melbourne Public Transport Victoria Limited
Perth Transperth
Sydney Transport NSW
Guide To Australia

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