Getting Around The Gold CoastTransport Options
Getting around the Gold Coast is relatively easy as long as you have a general understanding of what options are available to you and plan a little in advance.
TransLink’s bus, train and tram network can connect you to places all over the Gold Coast. Their integrated network on the Gold Coast includes the G:link trams, Surfside buslines and Queensland Rail. Visit translink.com.au or call 13 12 30 for information or to plan your journey using public transport.
TransLink’s integrated tickets are a great way to get around. Travel on bus, train or tram with a go card or grab a Gold Coast go explore for bus and tram travel - perfect for tourists and visitors. Read on to view your transport options when visiting the Gold Coast.
You can buy and recharge your go card at many places across South East Queensland. Some of these places also let you register your card, get a refund, or change the expiry date. Use the Translink search tool to find a go card retailer near you. You can also access go card products and services online or by calling 13 12 30
Gold Coast Public Transport:
The Gold Coast's light rail stations are unique to any other tram station in Australia. Known as G:link, the Light Rail tram system's first stop is at the Gold Coast University Hospital and connects commuting passengers to 16 stations across 13 kilometres, through Southport, Main Beach, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach, with the bus network at safe interchanges. There's also Stage 2 in the pipeline which will join Parkwood and Helensvale to the tram service.
Passengers riding the G:link have a number of different ticket options, including the go card (for locals) and one way paper tickets.
The Train on the Gold Coast begins at Varsity Lakes Station and finishes up on the Gold Coast at Ormeau Station. It continues its journey up to the Brisbane CBD and terminates at Brisbane Domestic Airport. The trip between the Gold Coast and Brisbane takes around 1 hour to complete.
The price of fares is based on the number of zones you cross during your journey. Prices will vary depending on whether you've got a concession, peak times and if you are using a go card or paper ticket.
Travel by Bus
The bus system will get around to most Gold Coast suburbs, with the majority of bus routes taking you to the train stations, major shopping centres and some attractions.
While the outer suburbs have regular bus services, they are not as common as those that journey along the Gold Coast Highway.
For this reason, buses are great for the main tourist areas, but difficult to rely on if you are travelling outside of the existing hub, such as the Gold Coast Hinterland. Fares will take you back about $4.60 for a one-way journey through 1 zone, but a Go Card will make this a little cheaper.
Other Transport Options
Rent a Car
Hiring a rental car is one of the best ways to get around the Gold Coast if you are here on holiday. The public transport system is good but it won't take you everywhere and there are heaps of things to see and do which are outside the existing public transport system (in the Hinterland especially).
When car rental prices start from around $20 a day (depending on how far in advance you book), it's usually cheaper and more practical to hire your own vehicle. There are car hire companies throughout the Gold Coast, including at the Airport, Surfers Paradise, Coolangatta, Southport and more.
Gold Coast Private Transfers & Charters
A private transfer or charter can be one of the most stress-free ways to get around a new city, especially if you have a large group or just want to avoid public transport. Depending on your point of origin and destination and how many pick-up locations there are, a transfer might make your journey faster while enjoying air-conditioned comfort.
Get transport to the theme parks, major attractions and even to Brisbane or Byron Bay. You can also travel to and from the Gold Coast Airport with ease by arranging a transfer with one of the numerous transport companies on the Gold Coast. An airport transfer will normally take you directly to your hotel or home.
The Gold Coast boasts over 2400 kilometers of interconnected bikeways and pathways, seamlessly linking neighborhoods, schools, picturesque foreshores, and parks. This extensive network effortlessly connects with major transit routes, making it an ideal destination for cycling enthusiasts. Download the Gold Coast Cycling Guide to help you plan your journey.
Lime's pedal-assisted electric bikes offers an eco-friendly way to explore the city. With hundreds of bikes available in key locations, residents and visitors can effortlessly navigate the beautiful sights.e. Unlike traditional bike-sharing schemes, Lime bikes can be picked up and dropped off anywhere, eliminating the need for specific docking stations. To start riding, download the Lime App for details on finding, unlocking, and using the bikes. Prices start at $1 to unlock and 54 cents per minute, with various passes available for frequent riders.
What better way to explore the Gold Coast than by renting a moped scooter in Surfers Paradise when you're on holiday? Feel the warmth of the sun on your skin, the wind tousling your hair, and occasionally honk the horn as you zip through the streets, playfully navigating curbs—perhaps drawing the attention of some locals armed with water pistols aimed your way.
Though not all scooter renters on the Gold Coast are thrill-seekers, it remains an exhilarating way to discover the area, offering easy parking and a joyful experience under Queensland's radiant sunshine. For your convenience we have gathered contact details for scooter rental spots in Surfers Paradise below.
Images courtesy Tourism & Events Queensland, Tourism Australia, Destination Gold Coast & Getty Images