Will I need to drive my own vehicle to conduct my everyday life (work/school/shopping) at my destination?
While it is not necessary to own a vehicle, the typical family in Melbourne will have a personal car. The public transport system is very good and professionals often use train and bus to commute to work. In the suburbs closer to town, trams are the most commonly-used public transport.
How can I legally drive a vehicle in this city?
Holders of international permits may drive on Victorian roads up until the expiry date of the permit (international permits are generally issued for periods of one or two years). If your licence is not in
English you must carry an English Translation of your licence which has been done by a person accredited to translate. Please visit the following website for further information of an Accredited Translation Institution. http://www.naati.com.au
If you are issued a permanent visa and become a resident of Victoria you must surrender your overseas licence and interstate licence and obtain a Victorian Driver's Licence within 3 months of becoming a resident.
You must only drive the class of motor vehicle authorised on your licence and adhere to all the conditions of your licence. When driving, it is imperative you carry your licence with you at all times as you must be able to immediately present it to a police officer if asked to do so. Once that licence expires you are required to obtain a Victorian Licence.
What side of the road do people drive on?
Drivers travel on the left-hand side of the road. Australian cars are right-hand drive. Generally, speed limits are 50 or 60 kilometre per hour in built-up areas and up to 110 kilometres per hour on highways and freeways. All local speed limits and other traffic indicators are well sign-posted. Suburbs and freeways are also sign-posted - including the 40 kilometre restrictions at school between 8-9.30 a.m. and 2.30-4 p.m. Directions to tourist attractions are displayed on signs with brown backgrounds.
Describe typical public transportation an expat might use to get around the city.
The Met is a public transport system incorporating trains, buses and trams. The rail system, in particular, is popular with commuters and school students. There is also a 'free tram' that will take you around the City centre- it is easy to find and well signed.
Tickets that allow you to travel on any combination of train, bus or tram are available for two hours, the full-day, a week or a month. Tickets may be purchased from booking offices at train stations, from automated ticket machines located at rail stations and tram stops or from bus drivers.
The city of Melbourne is currently introducing a new ticketing system called MYki. This new system is set to replace the old ticketing system by the end of 2012.
If you purchase a ticket on a tram or bus, you will be expected to have the correct (or close to correct) fare. Generally, a large note that requires substantial change will not be accepted. Concession fares are available for students and senior citizens.
Could an expat also use public transportation to get out of the city—to surrounding towns, recreation areas or suburbs? If so, list options.
Victoria has a country train system that will allow you to visit regional areas. Greyhound bus lines also run services to country towns. A popular day outing is to catch the Yarra Valley Tourist Railway to Healesville to see the world-famous Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary.
In regards to transportation, are there any safety issues I should be aware of?
As in all major cities around the world, care should be taken when travelling late at night on public transport. Be aware of hopping on and off trams in the suburbs as there are no barriers provided.
Where do I buy tickets/tokens/etc. for the major public transportation?
Tickets may be purchased from booking offices at train stations, from automated ticket machines located at rail stations and tram stops or from bus drivers.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.