As Australia’s busiest airport, Sydney is a natural starting destination for many travellers visiting Australia arriving at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport. But after landing at Sydney Airport, how do you get into the city — or return to the airport after your trip?
At just 9-kilometres or a 20-minute car journey – from the Sydney city centre, and is well connected by public transport, the best method depends on the time of day, group size, luggage, budget and personal preference. Let me break them down for you:
Better known as the Airport Link, it’s rather easy to discover how to get from Sydney Airport to the city by train as the train stations are located directly below both the Domestic and International terminals. In my opinion, this is by far the easiest option for your journey from Sydney Airport to the city centre.
Sydney’s Airport Train runs approximately every 10 minutes from both the International and Domestic Airport Stations, and it takes less than 20 minutes from the airport to arriving at the first of the city stations and has stops throughout the city, including at Central Station, Town Hall, and Circular Quay.
The price per ticket depends on your end location and if you are connecting to other train/bus/ferry services to reach your final destination. On average, using contactless payment or a OPAL card, adult price is $16.67 and children/concession are $14.08. Please check the website for the correct price as peak/off-peak fees are in effect.
One of the best things about taking the Sydney Airport Train is that if you don’t have an OPAL card or prefer to use contactless payment, you can simply swipe through the gates using your debit/credit card or card-enabled mobile device.
Cost: Starting at Adult: $16.67 and Children/Concession: $14.08 for off-peak period.
Time: 25-minutes from Domestic Airport to Circular Quay
WANT TO SAVE MONEY? Save on the airport gate fee and walk the 15-or-so minutes to Mascot Station. It’s not the most convenient, especially with luggage, but if you have time it is a great alternative to paying the hefty fee!
The quickest way to get from Sydney Airport to the city centre is by taxi or rideshare.
It’s easiest to get into a taxi at Sydney Airport as the taxi ranks are all directly outside the Arrivals Halls/Baggage Pick-up area. Taxi’s in Australia are safe and – with added competiton from rideshare operators – usually clean and professional.
In fact, in Sydney, I do prefer to take a taxi over a rideshare because of their convenient location and I find they are the most skilled navigating the city.
There are a number of rideshare operators in Australia, but Uber, Ola and Didi are the most popular.
Sydney Airport pickup locations vary on your terminal of arrival and the type of rideshare you’re after. At the International or Domestic Terminal, head to Limo Pickup for Uber Premium.
For all other ride options, follow the bright green signs to Priority Pickup. These are located at the far end of the car hire pick-up area for Domestic Flights, and at the far side of the At-Terminal Parking for International.
Please note: at the time of writing, Sydney Airport charges a $4.20 fee for all pickups and this fee will be automatically added to your fare.
Cost: On the journey from the Domestic Airport to Circular Quay, taxis cost, on average, around $45, including airport fee. Rideshare costs around $25, including airport fee.
Time: 20-minutes in normal traffic conditions.
Airport shuttle buses are not as common as they are in North America, but they do have airport shuttles at Sydney Airport! Most of these companies offer door-to-door service from and to Sydney airport and the Sydney CBD, or various suburbs.
Prices typically start at $25 one-way for city centre drop-off.
Two of the most popular Sydney Airport Shuttle companies are :
Sydney Airport is served by buses, and may be a slower but more convenient way for you to travel if you are heading to Bondi Junction, Eastgardnes or Burwood.
At the time of writing, Sydney Buses operates a timetabled service on the follow routes:
- Route 400, between Bondi Junction and Eastgardens via Sydney Airport
- Route 420, between Eastgardens to Burwood via Sydney Airport
These buses have stops at both the Domestic and International termainsl at Sydney Airport. To ride, you will need a valid OPAL card.
Cost: $4.80 for an adult using an OPAL card.
Time: 1-hour to travel from Sydney Domestic Airport to Bondi Junction.