If your looking for transport options from Melbourne’s Avalon Airport then this weeks article will give you some ideas to think about. Last week I had to fly down to Melbourne for a 24 hour run and hire a car from Avalon airport. I decided to write this weeks topic around auto rental options from Avalon Airport and also include other modes of transport getting from Avalon Airport to Melbourne CBD or Geelong. You can also organise your carparking online before you leave or arrive.
About – Avalon Airport
There are two domestic airports in Melbourne. The largest and main airport being Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport and the second, Avalon Airport situated at Lara. For some, getting to and from Avalon Airport to get flights is a hassle, i often went to Tullamarine instead for more convenience than the drive out. Avalon Airport is situated around 55 kilometers from the Melbourne CBD and travelling time to Avalon Airport from Melbourne CBD may take between 45 minutes to 1 hour on a good day subject to congestion and time of day.
So what options can you take to get from Avalon Airport to the Melbourne CBD?
- Hire a car ie. self drive option.
- Ride a bus from Avalon Airport.
- Hire a taxi.
- Hire a private driver – vehicle with driver service.
- Train – Avalon Airport is not supported by a train network (as is Tullamarine Airport for that matter).
Hiring a car from Avalon airport – Heres a list of airport car parking and Avalon car hire options. First up, carparking at Avalon airport like most airports is available, but usually there are hefty charges. By comparison to other Australian airports, Avalon’s parking rate seems reasonable at $79 for a weeks parking. Remember this is open air parking and your vehicle is subject to the weather elements. A carparking calculator is available on the Avalon airport website or go here. The airport carpark has over 1,500 car spaces and there’s no need to pre-book, you can just turn up to park your vehicle. Actually, the Avalon airport website is quite good for not only car hire quotations but also checking flight schedules.
For car hire options at Avalon Airport there are three companies represented.
1. Budget Rentals,
2. Avis and
I checked online for the vehicles on offer and all i needed was something basic during my stay in Melbourne. Heres a list of the cars for rent from Avalon airport. When I checked all three vehicle hire companies offered very little differentiation in price, in fact, vehicle rental rates varied around $1 to $3 a day between the different vehicle classes but booking in advance say at least a month out, Avis offered a smaller discount per day compared with the other two car hire companies.
Avalon Airport Car Hire Companies
When I checked the car hire options from Avalon airport I saw there were 12 classes of vehicles on offer. These were Economy, Compact, Intermediate, Family/Full, SUV, People mover, Luxury rentals, Green, Convertibles, Station Wagons, Four Wheel drives. The option I got for a 24 hour rental dropping back off at Avalon airport the next day for a flight back to Brisbane was the ‘economy’ class Nissan Micra, manual with AC for $74.18 per day from Avis rental cars. Actually on that breakup I see the base vehicle price is $51.68 but “other charges” of Airport city surcharge of $6.50, airport concession fees of $6.98 and a local tax of $9.02 take the cost up to the figure of $74.18 per day.
At the time of booking there were Toyota Yaris’s ($77.91 – Avis), Holden Cruze ($95.32 – Avis), Toyota Corolla ($85.99 – Europcar), Nissan Pulsar ($87.12 – Budget), Toyota Camry ($101.54 – Avis) plus many other cars including Mitsubishi Pajeros and Holden SV6 Wagon’s at $163.69 per day from Avis.
Strangely though, if you book say a month out on the Drivenow website, I got substantially reduced car rental quotes with Avis compared with the other companies. In fact the price of the Nissan Micra dropped from the $74.18 per day down to $61.75 per day while the others kept the daily rate for their vehicles the same regardless of when the booking was or how far in advance.
When I have needed to hire a car on any Melbourne trips its been at Avalon Airport. I haven’t used airport car rental services at Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport so cannot say which one over another but I am sure Avis would offer the same level of “customer experience” no matter where in Australia you went. Normally I fly into Avalon Airport from Brisbane using Jetstar and just go from there. All I can say is, there were six (6) companies represented at Melbourne Airport (Tullamarine Airport) for car hire options. These were Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz, Thrifty and Redspot. Basically you can find more information out here for the list of car rental companies at Melbourne Airport.
Hiring A Taxi – Getting a taxi from Melbourne city to Avalon Airport costs around $110.00 i am told and around $30.00 to Geelong (about 19 kilometers away). Melbourne’s two cab company names are 13Cabs and Silvertop taxis. Melbourne Taxi booking Applications: Have you tried a phone booking app before? I have used these apps in other countries and found them excellent whereby you can request a taxi directly from the taxi companies phone application. At the moment Uber doesn’t service the Lara (Avalon Airport area) but you can find out more about this expanding service here.
There are companies like Sydney based goCatch and ingogo providing taxi apps on the market and you can download theses from the playstore or istore that were also looking to enter the Melbourne taxi booking app market.
Riding a bus – There are options to catch buses to Avalon such as Sunbus shuttle coaches which leave from Melbourne’s Southern Cross Station. If you would like to find out about Melbourne Airports theres a good write up on Wikipedia.
Hiring a private driver – hiring a driver and vehicle may be more cost effective for travelling groups. It may also be possible to do a side trip eg. Down to the great ocean road or useful for a non direct route eg. Travelling as a group to Melbourne’s northside avoiding the need to use multiple transport options of bus or taxi then changeover to train etc.
Here are some private hire companies you might want to check out: No More Taxis Chauffeured Cars: These guys are Point Cook based and offer chauffeured airport transfer services. This is a door to door service. They have luxury sedans, BMW 735 and luxury Mercedes Viano 7 seater vehicles available for airport transfers and day tours on hourly rates such as Great Ocean Road Tours, Philip Island Penguin Parade and Melbourne Winery Tours. Available 24/7 to pick up from Avalon Airport. Baby seat booster available.
Ontime Airport Transfers – is a company offer $90 each way transfers from Avalon Airport to the CBD and vice-versa. Available 24/7. Call 0413363237.
There are operators who are offering as low as $70 to transfer from Avalon to the CBD. I cannot vouch the reliability or safety of these services.
Riding a train – Unfortunately there are no train services available from Avalon much like Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport which is not serviced also by a train line to the city unlike Brisbane City where I usually base that has the skytrain service from CBD to the airport and vice-versa. Just in the news the Victorian government were considering a light rail system to Avalon Airport.
As a final note in March, 2015 Jetstar did flag the long term future of Avalon Airport was in doubt and they may be pulling operations from this Lara base.