Sydney's ticketing systems can seem confusing and complicated. Hopefully this article will save you some time (and money) during your visit!

For official timetables, maps and ticketing information, visit this page

Basic Tickets 




Buses are the best mode of transport for between Bondi, Coogee and Palm Beaches, Watsons Bay, SCG, Star City, Featherdale Wildlife Park, Spit to Manly walk, Sydney CBD, inner-city suburbs with good food (Glebe, Newtown, Surry Hills...)

Bus fares

Where to purchase

You can buy bus tickets at corner shops, 7/11's, Australia Post shops (post offices), chemists and newsagencies and Transit shops which will generally have a Sydney Buses purple flag out the front.

On weekdays between 7am and 7pm, you cannot buy tickets on board buses anywhere in the city or along major transport corridors (Stops affected are marked "Prepay Only").  t other times and on weekends, you can buy tickets from the driver so long as the bus route is not "Prepay Only" (i.e. routes with M, L or X before the number, as well as a number of others such as the 333 to Bondi Beach). All of the red coloured Metrobuses that run out of the city are PrePay ,7 days per week.  t is highly recommended that you purchase tickets in advance so you don't have to worry about finding routes/stops where cash will be accepted. All of the shops are fairly familiar with the ticket you should buy.

Further Bus Questions?

Transport for NSW Information Booths are located at:


  • Circular Quay in Alfred St near Loftus Street outside McDonalds
  • Wynyard (Carrington St) which is under the 'dome' at Wynyard Park opposite the 'Menzies Hotel 
  • York St (between Market and Druitt St) outside the Queen Victoria Building (QVB)
  • Railway Square which is between Lee St and Broadway





Trains are the best mode of transport between Sydney CBD, Olympic Park, Milsons Point, Airport, Kings Cross, Bondi Junction, Bondi Beach (combined with bus), Cronulla Beach, Sydney's ethnic enclaves for good food (Strathfield, Cabramatta, Chatswood...), further destinations (Blue Mountains, Newcastle and Central Coast, Wollongong)


Train fares

Where to purchase 

Vending machines or ticket windows at Sydney trains stations



The ferry is the best mode of transport between Taronga Zoo, Sydney CBD, Manly, Watsons Bay, Darling Harbour, Milsons Point 

Ferry fares

Where to purchase 
Vending machines or ticket windows at major wharves, or onboard on some services

Lane Cove ferry services operated by Matilda Cruises

Best mode of transport for: Darling Harbour and King St Wharf, Chinatown, Casino, Sydney CBD
Privately owned and operated - all destinations also accessible by Govt transport, though less conveniently.

Ferry tickets can be purchased at some major ferry embarkation points (eg Circular Quay or Manly) from machines or ticket booths.  If you are embarking at a point where tickets cannot be purchased and disembarking at Circular Quay, you can buy a ticket at a machine at your destination before passing through the turnstiles.  A few services have cashiers on board, but not on all routes. If you are intending to use a number of modes of transport on several journeys during the day, it may be most economical to buy a day excursion ticket which will allow you unlimited travel on the whole Sydney network (with some minor exceptions, such as the privately operated "fast ferries" to Manly), including ferries, buses, trains and light rail. 

Tram (Light Rail)

Best mode of transport for: Fish Markets, Darling Harbour, Casino, Central Station, Chinatown, Glebe.  Line begins on the concourse off the main hall (country trains) at central and continues to Dulwich Hill, where it connects with heavy rail, and from where you may return to the City by train if you wish.

Privately owned and operated - all destinations also accessible by Govt transport, though less conveniently.
Purchase tickets on board from conductor or purchase a day excursion ticket (see above under "ferries") from a ferry, bus or railway station ticket outlet. 

 Light Rail fares


Transport Passes

Sydney now has a centralised electronic ticketing system using plastic cards ("Opal Cards") with the capacity to store funds and be automatically topped up from a credit card account (not much different to the London Oyster Card system).  If you are intending to spend more than a day or so in Sydney it may be worth purchasing and loading one of these cards, which can be purchased from many outlets identified with the "Opal" flag outside the shop.  There is a daily cap on spending (after which travel is free).  Pensioners/Australian Seniors card Holders are also able to buy a version of these cards which has a $2.50 daily cap.

General ticketing information


Australian Seniors/Pensioners can purchase a Pensioner Excursion Ticket (PET) for  $2.50 that permits travel

on all modes of transport for that day.

Where to purchase
*Corner shops, chemists and newsagencies, which will generally have a Sydney Buses PrePay purple flag out the front
Vending machines or ticket windows at major ferry wharves, or onboard on some ferry services
*Vending machines or ticket windows at CityRail stations


Premium Services

Sydney & Bondi Tour  $35 for 24hrs/$56 for 48hrs
2 interlocking bus loops visiting major tourist attractions with on board commentary

AirportLink (Airport rail line) $15 to City, $5 terminal transfer
AirportLink stations are privately owned and operated.
If your luggage is light, consider walking 1.4km to Wolli Creek station, where a ticket to the city will cost $3.2.

Airport Shuttle Services $12-20 to City
Privately run shuttle buses operate from the airport

Manly express ferries $8.5 between City and Manly
Sydney Fast Ferries and Manly Fast Ferry operate peak hour services, with a travel time of 18mins (regular ferry takes 30mins).
Periodical tickets also available at discounted rates.

Hop-on Hop-off ferry:
Operated by Bass and Flinders: 
Harbour Explorer $39 for 24hrs
Operated by Matilda Cruises (Captain Cook Cruises):  Combined Ticket: $59 for 24hrs  

Family Discounts

When one fare paying adult travels with their children or grandchildren on buses, trains or ferries, the first child (over 4 years and under 16 years of age) travels for a child fare (half full adult fare) and the other children travel free.

Children (under 16) travelling alone pay half the adult fare on Government run transport, and are eligible for significant discounts with private operators as well.

Students from tertiary institutions outside of NSW/ACT are not eligible for concession fares on any Government transport, and may be ineligible for discounts with private operators. Public transport information