Hi, 1) Transport on the Gold Coast is not always the best. Aside from costly taxis, your main option will be buses. Of course take advantage of any courtesy buses provided by many hotels and resorts that often go to the major attractions such as the theme parks (ask on booking what's available). http://translink.com.au/ is the website for the local public transport, with a journey planner. This is also accessible on smart phones if you have one. Just enter your start point and destination and you should get all available travel options.
2) The SEEQ card is TransLink's new travel card for visitors to South East Queensland. It is the easy way to travel and discover South East Queensland.
With a SEEQ card you get: Travel 3 or 5 consecutive calendar days on all TransLink bus, train or ferry services. Includes 2 journeys on Airtrain services to and from the Brisbane Domestic and International Airport Terminals.
Over $700 value in offers and discounts to use at more than 80 key tourist attractions, theme parks, accommodation providers, restaurants and more.
An 80 plus page passport to travel offers. This passport provides you with all the information needed for exploring South East Queensland by public transport. http://translink.com.au/tickets-and-fares/seeq-card/seeq-card
OR do the math and a Go Card may be all you need. http://translink.com.au/tickets-and-fares/go-card/new-to-go-card Just compare these 2 options for your own personal needs.
3) As for cheap passes, the aforementioned SEEQ card gives you some discounts listed on the website given, but there is also a VIP card that costs $99.99 for unlimited entry to Movie World, Sea World and Wet'n'Wild (NOT Dreamworld) until 30 June 2013. It's possible that the SEEQ card may be better for you. Another option is to purchase a Gold Coast Entertainment book, discounts given are listed here http://www.entertainmentbook.com.au/about/tell-me-more/gold-coast#travel They cost around $55.
It's always fairly warm in sunny Queensland so as we say here - slip (on a shirt), slop (on some sunscreen), slap (on a hat)and drink plenty of water.
Another suggestion is rather than setting your own phone to global roaming, just buy a $2 sim card with Amaysim when you get here at supermarkets, 7elevens, and post offices http://www.amaysim.com.au/mobile-plans/amaysim-as-you-go.html it will keep your call costs down, give you free access to social networking, etc.
Have a wonderful holiday!
Given that there are no direct flights from where I live to Gold Coast, we instead flew into Brisbane, and got the air train to Nerang, from where there is a bus going directly to Pacific Fair, Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise. Cost was $30.
Shuttles is the other main option, and indeed we did use the shuttle for our early morning flight out, but it was an enjoyable train ride in any case.
Although its often easier to drive, the bus service operated by Surfside for Translink does provide a reasonably comprehensive service. Services along the Gold Coast Highway are frequent, however many routes elsewhere operate hourly or half hourly at best. Local buses are an inexpensive way to get to the Airport, theme parks, attractions and to connect with train services to Brisbane. See http://www.translink.com.au for timetables.
There is no current official map of routes. Here is a current unoffical map (made by myself) of bus routes on the Gold Coast (divided into north and south part for viewing). A larger and more printable version is available at the website below.
To get from Surfers Paradise to Brisbane by Public transport, you need to catch a shuttle bus (Surfside busline, no 22) that takes you to Nerang Train Station.
From here, catch the train into Brisbane.
To go to the Brisbane Airports from the Gold Coast, check out the below timetable......
Formerly travellers took surfside bus 799 to a junction and then change to another bus to the beaches whether main beach, surfers paradises, south port are located. In January 2010, the route 799 is replaced by route 702 that take us direct to various beaches along the 15km strip. Bus stop is right in front of airport. AUD 6 p.p. Do not go to the highway.
Public buses run by "'Surfside" run the length of the Gold Coast.
When you arrive on the Gold Coast, grab a copy of Surfside’s Get Around Guide from the one of the Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle Transport & Information desks located at the Gold Coast Airport, on one of their buses or from your hotel or tour desk.
If you go to their website, you can download one.
Many parts of the Gold Coast operate on a hail and ride basis, so when you see the bus coming, you need to wave to signal the driver to stop the bus.
Fares vary, depending on where you want to go. The best option is to buy either an Ezy Pass
for unlimited travel, or to have loose change ready to pay your fare. Try to have the correct fare where possible.
For information on fares contact TransLink on 13 12 30 or visit translink.com.au.
TransLink offers concession priced tickets for children.
SINGLE: This one- way ticket allows transfers for up to two hours until you reach your
DAILY: for unlimited travel in nominated zones. You can travel until the last service on the day of issue.
OFF -PEAK DAILY: for discounted unlimited travel within nominated zones. You must travel between 9.00am and 3.30pm and after 7.00pm on weekdays, and all day on weekends and public holidays.
WEEKLY: for unlimited travel within nominated zones for one week. You can buy a weekly ticket from attended QR stations/agents and Surfside buses.
GO CARD: for longer stays, this electronic ticket gives you discounted travel and automatically calculates your fare. Simply touch on and off each time you travel.
What bus to catch? look for the bus number displayed above the front window of the bus.
The Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle offers a range of services:
Gold Coast Airport transfers - door to door transfers from Gold Coast Airport at Coolangatta to all registered accommodation houses and hotels on the Gold Coast. Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle meets all arriving flights into the Gold Coast Airport and operates one-way and return transfers.
Theme Park transfers - return door to door theme park transfer from registered accommodation houses to all the major theme parks, including Dreamworld, WhiteWater World, Movie World, Sea World, Wet'n'Wild and Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.
Visitors who plan on using a lot of travel using public transport might consider a Gold Pass. Available for 3, 5, 7 and 10 consecutive days, the Gold Pass includes unlimited door-to-door theme park transfers and unlimited travel on the local 24-hour bus network, Surfside Buslines, around the Gold and Tweed Coasts.
2009 - Prices start from $44 for an adult three-day pass. The Freedom Pass offers the same as the Gold Pass (above) plus return Gold Coast airport transfers. Prices from $58 for an adult three-day pass.
Tickets can be purchased from www.gcshuttle.com.au or phone (07) 5574 5111.
A cheap, easy way to get to the Theme parks is to use Surfside Buslines.
Surfside has 3 theme park services all stopping at Dreamworld - routes TX1, TX2, TX5.
Have a look at the below link for a map and information on Routes, Times, etc.
Check out www.translink.com.au for bus trip schedule and a journey planner which will help you with what bus to take and where to take it. It proved very useful to me during my stay in Southeast Queensland
Back in the old days when I was a kid, we took many family holidays at the Coast. Travel in those days was by the train hauled, usually, by two elderly PB15 steam engines. At a little bush siding the line split, one track heading to Southport and the other to Coolangatta and Tweed Heads. There was a lengthy break while the engines rearranged themselves, one to each line, with the appropriate carriages. It was all rather relaxed, so the passengers would get out to stretch their legs and it was common practice to take the billy to the engine for water to make tea. Bygone days indeed!
In later years, ‘progressive’ politicians closed the railway and sold the land, which occupied one side of the main street of Coolangatta: shops replaced the station. Of course, eventually there was a realisation that a railway to the Gold Coast had been a good idea, so a new one was built, with trains running from Brisbane Airport via Brisbane to the Coast. Except that they don’t run all the way to the Coast, they now stop at a place called Robina, a sort of western suburb somewhere behind Southport. If you travel by train, I guess there are buses or taxis from there to your destination. Since beginning to prepare this page, I have read that the highway between the Gold Coast and Brisbane is projected to become Australia’s busiest road within a few years: not surprising, given the inadequate public transport.
I think the best way to get around the Coast and to the Theme Parks would be just to use surfside buses (local buses). They are very easy to navigate and come very regularly. The also have buses that go to all the theme parks. You would need to check the Translink web site but as a rough idea you would need a zone 12 or 13 to zone 15/16 and you would be able to travel up and down the coast(including theme parks)Again check th web page but firstly you could get a 2 adult weeklys and 2 child weeklys (7 days unlimited travel in the zones) They would probably be no more expensive than say $30Adult and $15 for kids (3 year old is free!!)Much better than $280.00!!!If you want to go to the Hinterland you may need to hire a car for a day, can'tget there by local buses. The local buses stop all the time up and down the highway almost a hop on and hop off option if you like. Just talk to each driver to check the destination of his busand the bsest way to connect to the next. Have fun
Public transportation at the Gold Coast is efficient. There are enough buses from the Surfside Buslines criss-crossing the whole region from the Helensvale hub in the north to the Coolangatta Airport and beyond. If you use the Gold Coast airport transfer service (you can buy the Freedom Pass ticket from the Surfside Buslines information counter upon arrival at the airport which allows you unlimited travel on the buses until the ticket expires), make sure that you confirm your return trip at least 48 hours before your journey. And if you are taking off on an international flight, insist that you are picked up early at least three hours before the flight departs. My flight out of the Gold Coast airport was at 8.55qm and I had insisted that the bus picked me up at 5.30am. I was lucky because the driver was new and had problems locating some of the hotels in the area. I arrived eventually at 7am in a journey which I learnt would normally take only about 45 minutes or so in the mornings.
Pick up a "Get Around Guide" when you arrive at Coolangatta Airport - this a comprehensive guide to the local bus services, where to catch them from, and fares.
If you're going to make more than one trip on the bus, buy a daily ticket (which is the cost of 2 singles). Off-peak daily tickets are also available, but travel restrictions apply (cannot be used before 9.30pm, nor between 3.30pm-7pm)
CBD is 8km from Airport
Travel time to CBD is around 10 mins by car
Taxi $15 (approx)
Australia Coach shuttle $8 adult,$12 couple, $4 child (3-12)
Parking is available at the Airport
Please note prices are quoted in Australian Dollars and are relevant at the time of posting
07 December 2006.
By Air : The Domestic airport is at Coolangatta, at the southern end of the Gold Coast and services flights from major Australian cities and regional centres. International flights arrive at Brisbane Airport and there is a coach transfer or taxi's that will take you to your Gold Coast accommodation.
By Rail : A suburban rail service runs from downtown Brisbane through Helensvale and Beenleigh to the Gold Coast. You can then catch a coach from the Roma St Transit Centre in Brisbane to the Gold Coast. There is a direct overnight train from Sydney to Murwillumbah and then you can catch a coach to any major centre on the Gold Coast. Daily interstate coach services arrive and depart from the Surfers Paradise Bus Station
By Bus : If you are not driving yourself, there are buses which operate a 24 hr service along the highway. There is a surfside bus which runs Monday to Saturday from 6.00am – 7.00pm.
Monorail runs from The Oasis Shopping Centre to The Casino at Broadbeach.
Pedicab : This service is fairly inexpensive and operates mainly around Surfers.