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Recently ranked as the 3rd best city in the world by Lonely Planet, Canberra packs quite a punch considering it’s such a peaceful laid-back city. Nature and outdoor adventures go alongside cultural aspects that are part of its history. Add to that some delicious local food and several coffee precincts, and you will never want to leave.

However, to enjoy all of this, you need to be savvy with how the city’s locals move. If you’re a Kiwi with wheels, you aren’t in for any surprises as most of the traffic laws are similar to back home. For people who don’t yet own a vehicle, the city’s robust public transport network works just fine so you don’t need to worry.

How to get to and from the city

If you are flying into Canberra airport, then you can just hop into a metred taxi to the city centre. It shouldn’t cost you more than 25 AUD and takes about ten to fifteen minutes. If you aren’t flying in and instead arriving from Sydney via road, then try catching the Murrays bus that leaves from Sydney Central Railway Station. It will be a three-hour adventure that will introduce you to the bushlands and serene farms that dot the Canberran landscape. You will arrive at the Jollimont Centre bus station which is a great launching point for your Aussie adventure.

Travelling inside the city limits

With a very low population density, the city doesn’t have a vast interconnected public transport network like in big metropolises. That said, the bus service and other public modes of transport that are in place are more than enough to serve the local population’s needs. In fact, the bus system is so efficient that it’s preferred by commuters, tourists, and students. There are also bicycles, metred taxis, and ride aggregators like Uber.

Moving around in buses and ACTION

ACTION literally stands for the Australian Capital Territory Internal Omnibus Network and is the city’s public bus service. There are four main interchanges from where you can catch a ride, so if you are staying near Woden, Belconnen, Civic, or Tuggeranong, you are in luck. You can also visit the NXTBUS website for any real-time information on buses for a select few stops in and around the city.

The city also has an ample number of bus services that commute across most of the city’s town centres and attractions. If you are feeling touristy or exploring your new home, hop on the Culture Loop service which is a free bus service with numerous stops inside the city. Vehicles that travel this route depart every hour from 9 am to 5 pm and is a brilliant way to get a feel of the city’s geography. You can also view some famous attractions like the Australian Parliament House, National Museum of Australia, Questacon Science & Technology Museum, and Canberra & Region Visitors Centre. If you are doing this journey, then a hot tip is to get onto Route 101. This one will take you to all the tourist attractions in the city including New Acton.

If you are looking for ways to travel to work via bus instead, then be sure to leverage the Rapid Routes system. There are four different routes – Blue Rapid, Black Rapid, Red Rapid, and Green Rapid. They run at ten to fifteen-minute intervals between 7 am and 7 pm so you can plan your commute accordingly. If you have people in your family with reduced mobility, then the ACTION system’s bus fleet features easy access as well.

Get yourself a MyWay smartcard which will enable you with cashless payments for tickets. The card can be purchased from a Recharge Agent in the suburbs or over the phone by calling 131710. This will not just render you cashless but also give you with hefty discounts on the tickets.

Cycling is part of life in Canberra

Believe it or not, cycling is another wonderful way to get around in the city. A lot of people cycle to work and if your route isn’t fully cyclable, you can just add a bus ride to your commute. The Blue Rapid or the Red Rapid route use buses that have carry racks that can be attach your bike to the bus. The service is free and the cycles are locked in place with spring-loaded clamps. You can also take advantage of the Bike & Ride facility where you just lock your bike in a locker, cage, or rail and hop into an ACTION bus. On your way back just get off at the designated stop, unlock your bike and cycle the last leg of your commute.

Driving around in a personal vehicle

If you own a car then you can drive anywhere in and around the city. Roads are wide and well-connected to almost any place of interest. The traffic laws and road rules are very similar to New Zealand so you shouldn’t have any issues. Inside the city, you can get real-time traffic updates from Canberra Radio.

As far as the laws go you should be wearing your seatbelt at all times while children and infants must be in properly approved restraints. Driving under the influence is a strict no-no and the laws are exactly the same as that of New Zealand. If you are a learner or on a restricted license, then there is a zero limit while adults with full licenses have a legal limit of 0.05%. Speed limits are strictly adhered to in the city and almost every urban area inside the city has it capped at 50 km/hr. On the motorways it’s slightly relaxed but pay close attention to the signages which tell you clearly what the speed limit is.

If you hold a New Zealand driving license then it’s good for only three months. After that, you have to get yourself an ACT licence that costs between 60 AUD and 75 AUD in Canberra. To apply, you will need proof of Australian residency, a government photo ID, and your Australian address. Expect an eyesight test as well in addition to a transfer form, which is nothing but a formal request to switch to an Australian license from a Kiwi one.

If you don’t own a vehicle but still want to drive, you can get GoGet that will allow you to book cars for an extended period of time. If you want to ship your NZ car to Australia, it may be subject to expensive fees and taxes, contact Ausmove to find out more.

Our Fixed Price Guarantee:

Our Fixed Price Guarantee:

Unlike many other movers, we will provide you with a fixed quote based on your specific list of items.

Should you wish to add or remove any items, we will adjust our fixed quote accordingly. Hence, no nasty surprises at the end of the move process.

Our Service Promise:

Our Service Promise:

  • We will listen to your individual needs and requirements.
  • We will provide a prompt, competitive quote with in one working day.
  • We will provide you with the highest level of service.
Free In-Home Consultation:

Free In-Home Consultation:

If you are moving the majority of your household items from New Zealand to Australia, one of Ausmoves experienced relocation consultants will visit your home to establish your specific packing requirements and any unique moving needs. Learn more about moving to Australia from NZ.

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