Living in Sydney?
Transportation in Sydney
Public transport in Sydney is fairly good. There is a vast network of trains, buses, and ferries serving the Central Business District and the various suburbs.
Trains are operated by a state-run company called Sydney Trains. In reports from 2003 and 2007, its performance was, rated poorly, especially to other metropolitan rail services around the world. As a result, a huge project was launched to increase the reliability and capacity of Sydney’s trains. While the former has been achieved, Sydney’s trains may still suffer from overcrowding during peak times.
Between midnight and 04:30, Sydney’s trains are replaced by Night Ride bus services. Other bus lines also run late-night services, especially on major traffic lanes and between train stations.
There are also several ferry services departing from the Circular Quay Ferry Terminal, which are used by commuters and tourists alike. In addition to all these government-run means of transport, there is also the Metro Light Rail services, the latter running 24/7. Moreover, the local government has invested 1.9 billion AUD in an infrastructure plan with the aim of developing a new line for the Light Rail service and to pedestrianize George Street. Sydney's airport is served by the Airport Link train, which departs from Sydney central station about every ten minutes and takes you to the airport in less than half an hour. On weekdays the airport trains run from 04:23 to 23:23, and on weekends the trains run from 04:54 to 23:54.
For more information on all of these services, links to timetable information and a route planner, please check the public transport pages of the City of Sydney website.
Cars and Cycling
Most Sydneysiders — as inhabitants of Sydney are referred to — prefer to travel by car, especially the residents living in the more remote suburbs. A network of motorway-like roads directs traffic on radial and circumferential “Metroads” into and around Sydney. However, high volumes of traffic can be experienced during rush hours, and parking restrictions are in place nearly everywhere. There are also three privately operated car sharing schemes in Sydney: Hertz 24/7, Car Next Door, and GoGet.
Taxis and Uber are, of course, the other motorized alternatives. Taxis can be hailed from the street or at designated taxi ranks. Some taxi ranks are staffed by security guards late at night on Fridays and Saturdays to ensure the safety of travelers. A list of these secure taxi ranks can be found in the transport section of the City of Sydney website. Expatriates would also be interested to hear that Uber is available in Sydney. Uber is usually a more affordable option in comparison to taxis, but the prices fluctuate depending on many factors.
Cycling is often the cheaper and healthier alternative to both public transport and taking the car. The government encourages cycling by providing free lessons and building a large network of bike paths. Further initiatives include the Pedestrian Cycling and Traffic Calming Plans to limit traffic and improve safety on local roads. If you are interested in using the bike for commuting, there is a whole website dedicated to cycling in Sydney.
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