Australia tours and acitivities on sale
 
Australia tours and acitivities on sale
 

Australia Driving

Experiences in Australia

Renting a car is easy in Australia and one of the best ideas. Distances are long and is possible to fly cheaply between the major destinations and then pick up a car at the airport. For most areas a normal car is fine but there are places such as Fraser Island and Cape York where a four wheel drive will be needed.

Australia car hire

To book a car do compare rates between the car hire firms. The eGuide car hire system operated for us by Vroom Vroom is great. You can compare the prices and then book and you only pay when you take the car.

Distances are vast in Australia, so fuel is going to be costly. Outside the cities, traffic is not too much of a problem, but the roads themselves have hazards with which you may not be familiar, so always expect the unexpected. The passenger in the front seat should always regard himself or herself as on duty as a spotter.

Kangaroos are a hazard. If you see a kangaroo anywhere near the road, slow down. They are unpredictable - and big. A collision may not be very good for the kangaroo, but it will be almost as bad for you. Buffalo and cattle are even larger hazards, although their movements are less susceptible to sudden changes of direction. Then there is the question of road surface. Although Australian roads are improving, always be on the lookout for anything which appears odd in the road surface ahead, and slow down. If it looks odd, it probably is.

Once one leaves bitumen roads and starts driving on dirt, there are all sorts of additional hazards. The most obvious are the dust thrown up by other vehicles and the stones which fly off the road surface as another vehicle passes, and which can easily crack or break a windscreen. Then there are the corrugations in the surfaces of well used roads, which will shake your vehicle to pieces, and also lessen your control over it, since the wheels are touching the road for only part of the time. There may be washaways where streams cross the road, so always slow down for dips. Realise in advance that driving on a dirt road is going to reduce your average speed and increase your fuel consumption, so plan for this, rather than feeling pressure to reach a pre-determined destination on time.

Travelling at night is not recommended. At dusk and dawn the kangaroos come out in force. They stand in the road and are mesmerised by the lights of incoming vehicles. They appear to hop away and then, at the last moment, change their minds and hop back in front of your vehicle. Have a look at the front armour of the long-distance buses and trucks which are obliged to drive through the night. If you have something similar on the front of your vehicle, then drive at night with extreme caution. If not, then do not consider driving at night at all.

The remote areas of Australia are really worth seeing, for they are unique, but bear in mind that they can also be dangerous. Travelling by public transport will allow you to see plenty of remote places. However, if you choose to use private transport, remember that you must be well prepared. You need spare fuel, plenty of water, some common spare parts for your vehicle, a good detailed map and a plan for emergencies. Do not leave your vehicle if you break down in the Outback and try and conserve water by lying in the shade of the vehicle. Distress signals in patterns of three should be sent out and could be three columns of smoke, three yells and three of whatever you can. The traditional outback call is "coo-ee" and if you make that sound it does travel a long way.

This should involve telling somebody ahead (for example the police) when you will arrive at your destination and being sure that action will be taken if you do not so arrive. Every year people die on remote roads in Australia and you do not want to be included in such statistics.

Australia car hire

Australia car hire


Australia camper van hire

Combine driving with somewhere to stay. A great option if you want to explore. Australia has numerous campsites where you can park up. Large quiet roads making driving in rural areas easy.

Australia camper van hire

 
 
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