Car rental in Melbourne
Although public transport in Melbourne is fantastic, there’s nothing quite like having your own car. And with so many wonderful sights just outside the city, it can be a lot easier to plan a full itinerary with a rental car. One of the city’s main attractions – the Great Ocean Road – relies on having your own transportation, unless you want to splash out for an expensive tour.
Where to hire a car in Melbourne
No matter where you land when you fly into Melbourne, your airport will have car hire options to get you sorted for your holiday. Save time and money by booking online with Skyscanner before you travel.
Car rental at Melbourne Airport (MEL) is offered by 6 companies: Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz and Thrifty. These are found opposite Terminal 2, which is where international flights land. Domestic passengers landing at other terminals will find this just a short walk away.
If you’re instead flying to Avalon Airport (AVV), you’ll find 9 car rental companies at the airport: Alamo, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz, National, Redspot and Thrifty. All of these companies are based in the main terminal.
What to expect when driving in Melbourne
Like in New Zealand, cars in Melbourne and Australia stick to the left-hand side of the road unless overtaking.
Melbourne has a tram system that connects many of its major hotspots. In some parts of the CBD, you’ll be required to undertake a ‘hook turn’ when you want to turn right over tram lines. This unique turning system is explained in this video:
Popular road trips from Melbourne
Melbourne to the Great Ocean Road
The Great Ocean Road is one of Australia’s best-loved road trips. This scenic ocean drive takes in some dramatic coastline, with highlights such as the 12 Apostles and Bells Beach featuring on many visitors’ itineraries. It’s possible to drive the full stretch in one day, but it’s more relaxing to book hotels along the way, making the journey slower and more enjoyable.
Melbourne to St Kilda
Melbourne’s popular seaside suburb – home to Luna Park and some of the best cake shops in the country – St Kilda is a short drive from Melbourne CBD. The most direct route – when the traffic’s running freely – takes just 15 minutes via Kings Way.
Melbourne to Ballarat
History lovers often take a trip out to the Victoria goldfields. Ballarat was one of the major hubs of the gold rush, which brought to it a high level of opulence. The grand architecture is on another scale, with some of the most impressive buildings you never knew Australia had on display. The M8 links Melbourne to Ballarat (albeit through a toll) in 90 minutes, or you can go toll-free via M79 if you have an extra 20 minutes to spare.
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Please note: all information is correct as of December 2018.