Driving across Australia

Hi Andy,

Adam Silveston asks on Facebook: “If you were driving across Australia, how much time would it take and how much should you budget for petrol?”

Any tips?

Tim Chester 04/07/13    Getting aroundAustralia Link Report

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Hey Adam,

Wow, exciting prospect! One of the best cross-country routes is the 3500km Savannah Way (http://www.savannahway.com.au/) from Broome in Western Australia to Cairns in northern Queensland. This is best tackled between May and October when conditions are drier and roads more reliable. While you could feasibly drive this within a week or less, I would recommend allowing 15-20 days and stopping off along the way (there are an amazing four World Heritage to drop in at). While much of the Savannah Way is on sealed roads there are also a few sections requiring four-wheel drive – check out http://www.exploroz.com/TrekNotes/TopEnd/Savannah_Way.aspx for more info.

Petrol is relatively cheap, at least compared with the UK, though it has been going up in recent years. You can expect to pay up to $1.70 (£1) a litre for unleaded and $1.60 for diesel. I would budget around $650 (£390) for fuel.

Andy Turner 04/07/13    Link Report

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  • It also depends on how you want to travel ie in a van,4×4 or car. Now my girlfriend and myself drive from Perth to Darwin in 23 days and we hired a van from wicked which is probably the cheapest company to hire from but we would fill up the tank with petrol it would cost us around $50 – $60 and we would only get around 330 kilometres with that which also means because the road houses and town can be so far from each other we would have to miss certain things but at the moment im driving a Nissan patrol 3l turbo diesel automatic which has two tanks it will cost around $130 to fill up but you also get around 800 Ks to the tanks maybe a little bit more. So I would think about getting a car with more Ks to the gallon than a small van only because there are alot if things to see and do from west to north and north to east. But if your gonna drive from Queensland to the south you will only need a van as this is the populated area of Australia I hope this helps

    stevieb 13/07/13    Link Report

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  • I did it a few years ago and the best thing is to take as much or as little time as you want! I only went from Cairns, up to Kurrumba and back down to Mount Isa, across the Barkley Tablelands up to Darwin and Kakadu and across to Broome and back again. We took our time and saw so much, make sure to stay at free camping sites as well because you honestly see so much and it helps the budget. Fuel wise though, It was that long ago that I don’t remember prices, but we took a 4×4 and in some places you may need one depending on how far bush you want to go. A tip is to make sure you have extra fuel in the car, because between some places, for example the Barkley Tablelands, you may not see the nest fuel station for 700km or so. Fuel prices at the moment have been pretty high, unleaded just the other day was almost $1.70 and diesel was surprisingly cheaper! I really recommend driving though, you see so much!

    Toneille 23/07/13    Link Report

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