To get to Sydney I flew with Virgin Blue airlines. They have very cheap and competitive flights. If you want anything to eat or drink on the flight you have to pay for it (and headphones if you want to listen to music - good music channels too, plus a great comedy station), but the prices are reasonable.
The best thing about flying with Virgin Blue was the staff, they were fun and friendly... especially when we were told where to go to get our luggage "... and for those of you not listening, you can pick yours up in Bangkok in 3 weeks".
There is a shuttle bus service at the Sydney airport. The price is right, the delivery is "door-to-door" and on top of this they provide you with a free welcome city tour of Sydney. The later you are on the drop-off list the more you see of the city. Go for it!
All our Domestic Airlines depart from Sydney Domestic Airport located at Sydney's Kingsford Airport.
Our Domestic Airlines are:
The cheapest being Jetstar and Virgin Blue.
Outside the exit doors at the airport, there is a small company that offers $10 AUD per person to travel from the airport to downtown Sydney. They will find you and tell you about their service. Although you have to wait a few minutes for the van to fill up, during busy hours it is much cheaper than a taxi. (we took a taxi back to the airport at 5 am and it cost about $35 AUD for two people). The transfers drop you off right at your hotel and had no trouble carrying all of our luggage. It was a fairly quick ride and cheaper than a taxi and comparable to the trains. Highly recommended.
If you are flying into and out of Sydney, likely your journey will begin and end in the terminal of Kingsford-Smith International Airport. It is located south of downtown Sydney, with about a 20 minute cab ride into the downtown area.
International service is available from Sydney to a large amount of the world, serviced by the following airlines:
AR Aerolineas Argentinas +61 2 9234 9000
SB Air Calin +61 2 9244 2211
AC Air Canada 1300 655 767
CA Air China +61 2 9232 7277
AF Air France 1300 390 190
MK Air Mauritius 1300 658 572
NZ Air New Zealand 13 24 76
PX Air Niugini 1300 361 380
FJ Air Pacific 1 800 230 150
TN Air Tahiti Nui +61 2 9244 2799
NF Air Vanuatu +61 2 9299 9737
OZ Asiana Airlines 1300 767 234
BA British Airways 1300 767 177
CX Cathay Pacific 13 17 47
CI China Airlines +61 2 9231 5588
MU China Eastern +61 2 9290 1148
CZ China Southern +61 2 9233 9788
EK Emirates 1300 303 777
EY Etihad Airways +61 2 9231 8644
SJ Freedom Air 1800 122 000
GA Garuda Indonesia 1300 365 330
HA Hawaiian Airlines +61 2 9244 2377
JL Japan Airlines +61 2 9272 1111
JO JALways +61 2 9272 1111
9W Jet Airways +61 2 9244 2132
JQ Jetstar International 13 15 38
KE Korean Air +61 2 9262 6000
LA LanChile 1300 361 400
MH Malaysia Airlines 13 26 27
DJ Pacific Blue 13 16 45
PR Philippine Airlines +61 3 9650 2188
DJ Polynesian Blue 13 16 45
QF Qantas 13 13 13
BI Royal Brunei Airlines 1300 721 271
SQ Singapore Airlines 13 10 11
SA South African Airways +61 2 9287 8960
TG Thai Airways 1300 651 960
UA United Airlines 13 17 77
VN Vietnam Airlines 1300 888 028
VS Virgin Atlantic 1300 727 340
ZG Viva Macau 1300 848 262
Try this site and complete the "Plan Your Trip" section. Not too many options from around 11:30pm to 4:00am
Also see this site for other options
The Qantas Club in the domestic terminal is your standard Qantas Club. The coolest feature about it is they have a newsstand inside the club. A close second for cool feature, they have an APM. An Automatic Pancake Machine. No kidding. And the pancakes were pretty good after waking up at 4am to get to the airport for a morning flight.
As with any decent club you will have access to cleaner toilets, free beverages and enough food to tide you over.
Named after a pioneer Australian aviator, the Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport is Australia's busiest airport. Parts of the terminal have been renovated primarily to help passengers who might have a long layover in between flights. The shopping area offers a varied shopping experience for people might want to buy a list minute gift. There is also an extensive array of restaurants to cater to different tastes.
The immigration & customs staff may seem intimidating at first but they are actually quite helpful. Just be sure to answer truthfully and declare all items on your customs form and you should be alright.
The best way to travel to and from the airport will depend on how big your group is how much luggage you have. If you have a big group it would be better to take a cab as this would be cheaper. Smaller groups have the option of taking the Airportlink rail system which would be more economically. You do need to take into consideration that the system is not exclusive to people coming to and from the airport so the trains could be crowded with people commuting to and from work.
Arrival at Sydney Airport is straightforward, and like Singapore and Hong Kong, the process is simple and quick.
Immigration queues are rarely more than a few minutes for foreigners (are you listening China, USA and UK??!!). However, Australia is paranoid about foreign food getting into the country, and they seem more conrened that apples may get in than unwanted foreign people.
All incoming luggage gets X-rayed and this can take some time.
Finally, there is a question that is on the little immigration form asking if you have any criminal convictions. I understand that this is not now a requirement for entry, so it is best to just say "No" to this one.
As we arrived to Sydney by air, we found out that Sydney Airport (SYD) was just 9 kilometers south of the centre of Sydney. This international airport is quite a modern airports and all kinds of facilities like bureaux de change, cash machines (ATMs), restaurants, gift, souvenir and duty-free shops, parking facilities and also at Sydney airport there is a choice of car hire companies.
When we arrived and left the plane we saw that the sign were pretty clear and were able to find our way easy. Finally some relatives waited for us to pick us up and they guided us to the entrance and we left by car. Once again we were surpised that such an international airport is only 9 kilometers away from its city centre.
I always fly from Melbourne to Sydney on Virgin Air - book early to get best rates but make sure you do not change your plans as cancellation or changes involve big penalties. It cost me about AUD100 for a one way to Sydney, but if you are looking for better bargains, now and then they have sales.
The airport Virgin has just moved into was the previous Ansett - so much better than months ago - in that tin shade!!! and also proper transit gates.
If you're in a hurry like most of us are, go by airplane. I flew Air New Zealand. That is a wonderful airline that, when I flew it 10 years ago, treated folks in economy class like other airlines treat first class passengers. I hear tell that Qantas has a good reputation too.
That depends on how far out from Sydney you want to go. In town, taxis are the best way to go. Some hotels, like mine, had courtesy vans that would take folks around town either free or for a modest tip for the driver (which is still cheaper than taxicab fare). If you want to travel far and wide, I would recommend hiring a car.
A picture of the arrivals level of Sydney airport (international terminal). Samsung has a display with free internet access (near one of the doors to the outside opposite the hotel telephones). In this photo, the free internet machine is to the extreme left.
All European travellers who are flying direct to Aussie will land in Sydney; even if you are going to another place in Australia. There you have to take another plane (depending on your booking with your travel agent) to your right destination. I have flown 3 times to Australia now, and 2 times with Royal Dutch Airlines (K.L.M.) and 1 time with
Alitalia. But they both work together it is just the same. Flying with K.L.M. from Belgium; you will depart in Deurne-South (Antwerp) to
Schiphol (Amsterdam) and from there to
Singapore > Sydney. Flying with Alitalia; depart from Zaventem (Brussels airport) to Malpensa (Italy) and from there to Singapore > Sydney. But with K.L.M.!!! The only different for me is that Antwerp is only 30 minutes drive from my home and Brussels 1 hour (if I aren't unlucky to get in an traffic jam). On the other hand the food you get on Alitalia is much better then from K.L.M., even the crew is the same as flying K.L.M. So, it's a difficult decision. Near at home or further and good food ;-)
By plane would be the best way. It is a 10-12 hour drive from Melbourne and thousands of miles from anywhere else in the world! :-)
Public transport, ferries around the harbour area, or hire car if you think you can handle driving in that traffic!