Now, on to Australia’s third city. Welcome to Brisbane! Brisbane offers all the fun attractions of a large, cosmopolitan city, but retains the chilled-out vibe Queensland is famous for. So, in terms of car hire, Brisbane is the perfect spot to hit the road. Get some wheels and discover its riverside lifestyle, gorgeous gardens, leafy suburbs, cultural hotspots and nearby beaches.
Here’s a step by step guide on hiring a car in Brisbane.
Use KAYAK to search hundreds of travel sites at once
Looking for car hire deals on the internet is like finding the proverbial needle in a haystack. KAYAK does the hard work for you, so you can search hundreds of travel sites at the same time. Just enter your dates for travel and we give you all the information you need, including prices, reviews and maps for companies providing car hire in Brisbane.
Choose locations, dates and times that suit you
Before you start searching for the right car hire deal for you, have a think about the locations you want to visit and timeframes for your itinerary. Perhaps you’d like to pick up a hire car at one location, but drop it off at another to save some driving time. Or, if your main priority is to save money, our data suggests that it’s often cheaper to pick up and drop off at the same location, such as the airport or in a major town.
Some companies that allow pick-ups from Brisbane airport include:
Another useful tip is to use KAYAK’s map to easily pinpoint car hire Brisbane companies in your preferred areas.
Read reviews of Brisbane car hire agencies
As you’re searching hundreds of travel sites for Brisbane car hire deals on KAYAK, you’ll find reviews from other travellers to help you make the right choice. This way, you’ll have real-life examples of experiences with customer service, hidden fees and extras, vehicle suitability and insurance policies, to make a more informed decision.
Tips for driving in Brisbane
For a city with a population of over 2 million people, it’s surprisingly easy to drive around Brisbane. The airport is about a 30-minute drive from the CBD and, if you avoid peak hour traffic from 7:00 am to 9:00 am and 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm, you’ll find most roads easy to navigate, even in central areas.
Brisbane’s toll roads connect areas in a way that makes driving a breeze. The major toll roads include the Gateway Motorway to the Sunshine Coast, the Logan Motorway, Clem7 Tunnel, AirportLink M7 and the Go Between Bridge. However, you do need to make sure you pay to use them beforehand, or within three days of travel, to avoid fines. You can buy a toll credit pass from Linkt or at participating 7-Eleven stores and service stations.
On-street parking in Brisbane city is metered and often attracts strict time limits. However, there are plenty of car parks with reasonable rates, including at King George Square, Wintergarden, MacArthur Central and the Performing Arts Car Park, which offers a daily parking rate of $17. In the outer suburbs and surrounding regions, you’ll find much of the on-street parking is free, as are many car parks located at shopping centres and attractions.
The default speed limit in Brisbane in built-up areas is 50 km per hour, unless signed otherwise. Limits are enforced by speed cameras and mobile police patrols, so make sure you’re aware of how fast you’re driving at all times, to avoid fines and for road safety.
Best Road Trips Around Brisbane
From roads winding through lush rainforest to coastal drives and mountain vistas, road trips in and around Brisbane ensure you make the most of your hire car. Here’s a look at our top picks.
Springbrook National Park
Springbrook National Park is the place to chase waterfalls cascading through ancient rainforest. It’s an easy, one and a half hour drive via the M1 motorway from the city, and once you reach Mudgeeraba the scenery puts you in the heart of natural wonders. Don’t miss Purlingbrook Falls Lookout, having afternoon tea with scones at a charming cafe and taking a detour to see the glow worms at Natural Bridge.
The Sunshine Coast
In just over an hour from the CBD, you’ll find the stretch of golden beaches and gorgeous towns, known appropriately as the Sunshine Coast. Start your sun-drenched road trip in Caloundra for a swim, move on to Coolum to catch a wave and take a detour to the Glass House Mountains for countryside views. Stop in at Mooloolaba to visit UnderWater World and finish your trip in glamorous Noosa, for fine dining and boutique shopping.
The Gold Coast
Just an hour ‘down the road’, as the locals say, the Gold Coast is everyone’s favourite weekend destination from Brisbane. Hit the M1 motorway and continue on to the Gold Coast Highway, to find yourself at Movie World, Sea World or Dreamworld, on the sands of Surfers Paradise Beach, at the trendy cafes of Burleigh Heads or in the pro-surfing paradise of Coolangatta.
*Note: These rates are based on search queries made on KAYAK.com.au on 16 June 2018. The prices are quoted in AUD. Flight prices are based on results for a return economy flight search. Hotel prices are for double occupancy and include taxes and fees. Prices are subject to change, may vary, or no longer be available.