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 Sydney will have a personal car. The public transport system is very good and professionals often use trains, buses and ferries to commute to work within the Sydney metropolitan area.
How can I legally drive a vehicle in this city?
If you are not intending to stay in New South Wales (i.e., if you're a business person on
limited-duration assignment), you are not required to get a NSW driver's license, even if your stay is longer than three months. However, you must:
- Hold a current overseas driver's license
- Have an unchanging visitor status
- Not have been disqualified from driving in NSW or elsewhere
- Not have had your license suspended or canceled or your visiting driver privileges withdrawn
In contrast, if you are intending to stay in NSW (i.e., you hold a permanent visa under Commonwealth
Migration Act 1958), you are allowed to drive in NSW on your current overseas license for a maximum of three months after arriving in Australia. However, you must:
- Have a current license
- Not have been disqualified from driving or riding
- Not have had your license suspended or canceled
- Not have had your visiting driver or rider privileges withdrawn
While licenses from countries might be recognized, it is recommended that you apply for a New South Wales driver's license to avoid any difficulties with regard to insurance claims if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a motor vehicle accident.
To obtain a NSW driver’s license, you will usually need to undertake a full test. This includes a practical driving component as well as a theory test. For further details, check the current regulations with the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA).
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 kilometers per hour in built-up areas and up to 100 kilometers per hour on highways and freeways. All local speed limits and other traffic indicators are well signposted. Suburbs and freeways are also signposted. 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 Sydney Transport system covers trains, buses and ferries within the Sydney metropolitan area. Its website includes trip planners, relevant timetables and fares. It is possible to combine fares with a Travelpass allowing you to use a combination of transport. These passes are available from CityRail stations, bus stations and Circular Quay Ferry Terminal. (This is the main city ferry terminal.) Travelpass must be purchased before using the transport and can be valid for seven days, quarterly or yearly. The passes are designed for regular public transport users and vary according to what combination of transport is being used.
Sydney Transport Infoline (phone): 131 500
Could an expat also use public transportation to get out of the city—to surrounding towns, recreation areas or suburbs? If so, list options.
New South Wales has a country train system that will allow you to visit regional areas. Greyhound bus lines also run services to country towns. Popular day outings include the Blue Mountains, Berry down the south coast or north to Terrigal on the central coast.
Information on train services to New South Wales country areas: 132 232
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 traveling late at night on public transport.
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 at ferry 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.