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The Student Guide To Australia

From soaking up the sun on Bondi Beach to sipping coffee in Melbourne's alleyways, camping along the Great Ocean Road to diving the Great Barrier Reef, the abundance of activities Australia has to offer makes it the travel destination of choice for many young people.

Unfortunately, for the average student backpacker, Australia can be a little on the expensive side. Its also the sixth biggest country in the world, which makes the planning and preparation stage of your trip that bit more crucial. 

Thankfully, travelling around Australia on a budget and experiencing an authentic slice of life down under is still more than possible if you bear the following in mind. 

Getting around

As a land of long distances, flying is arguably the best way to get around. Air travel is more competitive and cheaper than ever before too, with multiple flights between the big cities happening every day. 

But due to the scenery and landscapes on offer, nothing can quite beat an Australian road trip.

Cheap car hire in Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney or Perth means you can make the most of Australia’s scenic coastlines and stunning outback without breaking the bank.

Where to stay

Thanks to its countless National Parks and year-round good weather, camping in Australia is affordable and enjoyable.

Caravan parks are also a great option, as many of them have excellent amenities and are located right by the beach. 

Hostels are another cost-effective choice. Along with low rates for a room or bed, you can usually take advantage of free activities and cook your own food too. 

Food and drink

Those on a tight budget will have to rely on their own culinary skills because eating out in Australia is usually an expensive pastime.

Thankfully, most supermarkets are full of delicious fresh produce grown or sourced locally. 

If want to sample some authentic Aussie fare, go for breakfast or lunch instead of dinner as prices will be lower. Surf clubs and shopping malls tend to be more affordable too.

Activities and entertainment

Australia is all about the great outdoors, especially its 50,000 kilometres of coastline featuring over 10,000 beaches.

So slap on some sunscreen, pack a picnic and while away the hours on the lush golden sand. 

Even in the cities of Melbourne and Sydney you’ve got several parks, markets, museums and galleries to explore for free. 

Know before you go – average prices for everyday expenses

  • Beer - the average price for a schooner (425ml - most popular) of beer is around $6.
  • Lunch - head to the pub at lunch to score yourself a meal and drink for less than $20.
  • Taxis - cab fares start at about $4 and will add around $2 for every half a mile.
  • Transport - public transport such as a tram or bus will cost around $4 per trip.
  • Hostels - the average price of a dorm bed in Australia is about $20-$25 a night. 
  • Hotels - the cost of a night at a budget hotel in Australia will range from $80-$130.