How to get around Australia? Transport information for international students

Buses, trains, trams and ferries are the transport options in Australia. Private and public car services are also available to take you from door to door. In addition, some education providers have their own in-house transport system.

The costs of public transport depend on the place you live and the type of transport you use. You will find the full range of services available, timetables, and the costs associated with the relevant state or territory government website.

As an international student, you might be able to apply for transport concessions depending on where you live. CISA (Council of International Students Australia) supports the concession campaigns that are initiatives of international students but we are not running one them ourselves.

The following Australian states are the ones that offer concessions for transportation

For more information:

Who are entitled to a concession fare?

  • In NSW, international students in receipt of an approved Australian Government scholarship or exchange place are eligible for concessions, while full-fee paying international students are not.
  • Full-fee paying international students are not entitled to a concession fare in Victoria.
  • All full-time students (including international students) are eligible to receive a concession fare in the Australian Capital Territory, Queensland, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia.
  • Public transport is free for all full-time students in the Northern Territory.

Which states are doing concession campaigns?


The Victorian government has now granted international students access to concessions for public transport. International students are eligible to purchase annual myki passes with the 50 per cent discount afforded to local students. However, they are not eligible to access the concession fare for other myki fare types—such as daily and weekly passes, and myki money. The annual myki pass, with a concession fare, can cost around $1000.

However, a campaign is currently going on in Victoria for Postgraduate students concessions campaign called Fares Fair PTV. For more information, please look on their website


SUPRA (Sydney University Postgraduate Representative Association) is currently running a travel concessions campaign in NSW. For more information or if you are interested in signing the petition, please contact the Postgraduate International Student Officer at The Campaign was launched in cooperation with SUPRA, NUS, as well as the SRCs of UTS and UNSW.

The government unlawfully denied international students travel concessions and overcharged them for public transport fares by 50%. This was nothing short of disgraceful and wholesale discrimination. However, shortly after the win in the Administrative Decisions Tribunal, the NSW State Government took the extreme step of passing special legislation which made the discrimination lawful from September 2006.

Student organisations and student representatives across NSW continue to work on this issue, including through campaign by the Cross-Campus Concessions Coalition (CCCC). They continue to campaign around this issue and raised the lack of Transport Concessions for International students in a number of our submission to the recent enquiries to International Students at the Federal level.

The campaign of ACPET (Australian Council for Private Education and Training): achieving equitable travel benefits for international students.

How do students get around their city?

Public transport

Depending on where you live in, public transport options will vary. Those living in regional areas might be limited to a local bus service, while those in metropolitan areas may be able to choose between trams, trains, buses, ferries or a combination.

If you have decided where to study or live, it is worth researching the different types of local public transport available, the extent of the network, timetables and the proximity of stations or stops to your home and institution.


Driving can make getting around a lot easier, especially if you live in a non-metropolitan area where public transport might not be as frequent.

More details on driving could be found under the link:

If you hold a current drivers license in your home country, you might be able to drive in Australia without sitting for any further driving tests. But remember that many state and territory governments require you to get an Australian drivers license if you are here for more than three months.

Your license requirements and any driving restrictions are managed by the state or territory government where you are living. Visit the relevant state or territory government website or go to to find out more.