On the Road in Australia – An Insider’s Guide to Driving Down Under

Did you know in 2021, 1,123 road crashes led to death in Australia? The driving laws are essential to learning and the different challenges involved.

In this guide, you’ll learn about driving in Australia and how to stay safe. It’s helpful to learn about the road ahead of time, and learn about the driving laws in Australia. 

Ready to learn more? Keep reading.

Australian Wildlife 

When driving in Australia, you’ll want to prepare to see some wildlife in rural or remote regions.

During sunrise, sunset, or at night, you should keep an eye out for animals. Australia has large farm animals and wild critters that wander around. When driving alone, try to move when it’s bright during the day.

Watch Out for School Zones

Speed limits will apply across the country of Australia. You should always follow the rules. Otherwise, you’ll end up with an expensive fine. Some speed zones are temporary, like a school zone.

Driving on the Road

Australia is a country filled with rough and rugged terrain. Make sure you know what kind of roads you’ll deal with in Australia. Remember that some roads aren’t sealed and will differ significantly in your area.

Plan ahead if you plan to go on a long road or drive in a remote region.

You Need a Valid Driver’s License

You can drive with your country’s license in Australia, as long as it’s valid and has English characters.

You can drive vehicles that your license lets you. Yet, there are different rules, depending on the location. In the Northern Territory, drive with an international permit for three continuous months.

If your license happens to be in a different language, you’ll need a formal translation in English. Drivers should get a certified international driver’s license from their home country.

Get Used to Driving on the Left

Australians drive on the left side. The vehicles are right-side driving vehicles. For international drivers, they might find this a challenging aspect.

Keep to the left, and try driving clockwise in roundabouts. You’ll give the vehicles coming from the right way.

Drivers will feel slightly cautious when driving on a different side in the first few days. Yet, over time, you will begin to feel more comfortable.

What’s the Speeding Limit?

There’s a maximum speed limit for Australian drivers, and it’s 110 km/h. When you cross into a new state, the speed limit could change. Ensure you’re always looking out for new speed limit signs.

Urban areas tend to have a 50 km/h speed limit. Look for school zones because they have a low-speed limit. During school, the speed limits are enforced more than ever before.

Speed limits will get enforced on the roads, even if you can’t see prominent signage. If you aren’t able to see signage, you should try the default speed limit. Avoid getting an expensive speeding ticket while traveling.

Wear Your Seatbelt

In Australia, you need to wear a seatbelt. This is a law that’s regulated strictly in Australia. The driver must ensure their passengers are also wearing their seatbelts.

Anyone who’s over 16 and isn’t wearing a seatbelt will cause you to get fined.

Don’t Drive Under the Influence

Like most countries, driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs is not legal. Police often pull someone over and carry out a drug or alcohol test.

The blood alcohol limit is 0.05 to 100 ml of blood. Don’t try to calculate your blood alcohol content. There are factors to consider, like weight, size, metabolism, and weight.

Don’t drink alcohol before driving. You should ask a sober friend to drive or call a cab.

Illegally Using a Phone While Driving

It’s not legal to use a hand-held mobile phone while taking a drive.

Texting, snapping photos, or talking while driving can be a heavy fine. No matter if you’re waiting for a red light to turn or you’re stuck in traffic, avoid using your mobile.

Australia has traffic cameras to capture drivers using their mobile phones.

Get Used to Long Distance Driving

If you want to tour the country, prepare yourself for long stretches of road.

People from small countries arrive and feel overwhelmed by the long treks. You should make sure you fill up your vehicle before a long trip. You don’t want to live in a remote area without enough gasoline.

Stock up on lots of snacks and water.

Research Before Your Trip

Are you planning to go to a few different states in Australia? You should spend time learning more about the other states and driving rules. It’s also helpful to look up the different road sign meanings.

Learn about common road conditions to expect during different seasons. Some areas might have a lot of wildlife to look out for while driving.

If you plan to stay for a long period or move, you could always take a road test. Some people will feel more comfortable taking a test. Find a local teacher or check out

Have Fun Exploring and Driving in Australia

Did you find this guide helpful for driving in Australia? Research the different road signs and common driving conditions before your trip. You should ensure you have a proper international license before your trip.

Make sure you fuel up before a long trip so you don’t get stuck on a remote road.

Need more helpful travel tips like this one? Check out our blog for more information.


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