Other Cheap Methods of Getting Across Australia

November 23, 2009 · 6 comments

Last Week I showed you how you can rent a car and get across Australia cheaply. See here. However transport in Australia is as vast as the country itself.


Fly Australia

Fly Australia

The most simple and often cheapest is to simply catch an aeroplane. Check these sites for deals and the cheapest business class flights to Australia:




Check out the budget airlines directly for deals too: Jetstar, Virgin Blue, Tiger Airways.


Next up we have the rail service. Slower and often more expensive then a plane, it’s not a popular option. The reason people would choose it is to get a view and sense of adventure, but really there it takes a special person to be consistently entertained by a desert view of ‘The Ghan’ (Between Darwin and Adelaine), ‘The Overland’ (Between Adelaine and Melbourne) or ‘The Indian-Pacific’ railway (Between Sydney and Perth named after the oceans the railway connects). Check out rail companies here:




Going by road is the most varied option. I showed last week how renting a car may be the cheapest option. However in my opinion if you are travelling long term as opposed to just needing to cheaply get across Australia then buying your own vehicle is a better option. Familiarise yourself with the legalities of vehicle ownership and as long as you can stick to that then you should be ok.

Whether you want a simple car, backpackers campervan or take in the heat on a motorbike, ownership allows you to take your time, do your route, see your interests, and best of all, sell the vehicle at the end to recoup the cost of buying it back. The downsides is you have to fund fuel and maintain it yourself as well as keep it road legal by registering it. Insurance is not compulsory in Australia but recommended.

Check out local dealers, news papers and www.gumtree.com.au for vehicles.

Do you know a better way of getting across? Swim around it? Cycle through? Hitch hike? Let me know!

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Liissie - Driving the Nullarbor November 30, 2009 at 9:17 AM

I wrote the linked to hub after planning a trip from Perth – Adelaide by car and back on the train. It was worth doing once – I wouldn’t bother with the train again though – and we spent a lot of $$ for a sleeper.

I just sold our car to a couple of backpackers – backpackers need to get smart about buying cars- they pay way too much and then try recoup the cost from the next mug. I sold a 1996 commodore for $1800 – we paid $2500 12 months ago so I thought it was a fair price – the car runs just fine – rough bodywork but the important stuff works fine. The couple I sold 2 and just walked away from a similar age car – which was burning oil, missing door handles etc and had some camping gear – for $3000! You can buy an awful lot of top quality, good camping gear for $1000 – NEW! And sell it again afterwards (Aussies always want camping gear too) –
.-= Liissie – Driving the Nullarbor´s last blog – Comment by =-.


AdventureRob November 30, 2009 at 2:59 PM

Thanks for Link Lis, I’ll check the article out.

Backpackers just wanna have fun ;-) Cars in Australia are definitely more expensive than other parts of the world (Holden Monaro’s are about $6-7k cheaper in the UK despite being made here for example), so it can be hard to find value here.

I just picked up a campervan loaded with a decent amount of equipment between $2-2.5k and it needs a few bits done to pass WA’s vehicle inspection but I’m happy with it (hopefully a video of that coming soon too!).
.-= AdventureRob´s last blog – A Cheap Way of Getting Across Australia =-.


veda April 1, 2011 at 1:11 AM

@AdventureRob, how i do not think australia is the most expensive one for car buying but when thinking of salary for each ppl, i would think that i must agree with you. Anyway, i am planngin to lve in Australia before but will give up it now as i cant really afford for a living there.
veda´s latest blogpost – How To Find The Best Cheap Car Insurance For Your Needs


AdventureRob April 1, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Like most countries, it’s fine to live there if you have a regular job working a full time week. But it’s a pain on anything less. Especially with the ever increasing in strength Oz$


Flights-Noob January 18, 2013 at 6:58 AM

I would prefer to fly across Australia for sure since the flights are cheap.

If you think car in Australia is expensive, take a look at car prices in Singapore. It is easily S$150K to get a decent sedan made in Japan.


AdventureRob January 18, 2013 at 4:07 PM

I’m aware of the ridiculous prices of cars in Singapore. But it is a much smaller country with great public transport though. Australia is a much larger place to get around, so flights and big cars make sense there.


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