Brisbane: Let Airtrain Take The Strain

Forget paying a $60 cab fare from Brisbane Airport to the city. Airtrain gets you there faster, with less hassle and for half the cost.


Brisbane Airport has got to be Australia’s best connected thanks to Airtrain, which provides a direct rail link to Brisbane city, and all the way down to Surfers Paradise and the Gold Coast.

Airtrain – whose long-standing slogan has been “no worries” – certainly takes the stress out of jostling for a cab, not to mention sitting in peak hour traffic as the meter ticks higher.

Just step off your flight, grab your luggage from the carousel and head straight up the travelator outside the domestic or international terminals, where the Airtrain will whisk you into the city in under 25 minutes.


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I used Airtrain to get from Brisbane’s domestic airport to the city. It was easy to find, we just followed the signs up two sets of travelators to the ticket booths and platform.

You can buy tickets on the day at the airport, but there are big savings to be had by booking online in advance as we did.

For instance, if you’re travelling with a companion, you pay $30 one way for both of you – as opposed to $37 for two separate adult fares at the ticket booth.

There are also early bird discounts of up to 15 per cent online (see below), depending on how far in advance you buy your ticket.


Airtrain Savings


Airtrain Station


Trains depart the airport terminal every 15 minutes in peak periods and every half hour during the off-peak, with the service running between about 5 am and 10 pm daily.

The trains are spacious and surprisingly clean and graffiti-free – probably because there are CCTV cameras at every turn.



The privately-owned Airtrain is integrated with Queensland Rail’s network and stops at the international and domestic terminals (which are 4 km apart), along with five inner-city stations and five on the Gold Coast.

It usually takes 23 minutes to get to Brisbane’s Central Station and 90 minutes to Nerang, the most convenient station for Surfers Paradise and the Gold Coast.

Since it launched in 2001, Airtrain has carried more than 23 million passengers.



This is NOT sponsored content. All travel was paid for by the author.


© 2019 Bernard O’Riordan (Travel Instinct). All Rights Reserved 

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