Public transport in Melbourne
Melbourne’s public transport network is made up of trains, buses, and the iconic tram network. Between them, these can get you just about anywhere you need to go across central and suburban Melbourne.
Myki: the key to Melbourne’s public transport network
All of Melbourne’s public transport options are connected in a common, contactless ticketing system called myki. Although figuring out how it works can be confusing at first (and a lot longer after that, even for Melbourne residents!), it does make things easier in the long run.
Step one: get a card
Myki cards can be purchased from all 7-Eleven shops and hundreds of convenience stores around Melbourne. Just look for the green myki flag outside. Alternatively, you can buy myki cards at some train stations with ticket offices.
Step two: top up
Once you have your myki card, you can top it up (as you need it) at:
myki machines, which can be found at many tram stops and all train stations
Many convenience stores and supermarkets (again, just look for the green myki flag).
Online: use the card number on the back of your myki to top it up online
Step three: swipe on
All of Melbourne’s trams and buses have multiple myki card readers on board. Simply tap on as you get on, and you’ll automatically be charged the lowest fare for your total journeys within a day.
Step four: swipe off (if you need to...)
On trains, you’ll need to tap on at a myki reader on the platform (or station entrance) before getting on board. Be sure to tap off in the same manner when you get off, to ensure you don’t get charged for the most expensive suburban train zone fare. You can also tap off of buses and trams if you like, to be sure you don’t overpay.
The Melbourne Free Tram Zone
Getting around Melbourne CBD is quick, easy and free thanks to the inner-city Free Tram Zone. As the name suggests, this means you can hop on and off, without touching on your myki, all trams within the Free Tram Zone (which covers the entire CBD, Docklands, Southern Cross and Flinders Street stations, and as far north as the Melbourne Museum).
Cycling and bike hire in Melbourne
Melbourne is a very bike-friendly city. It’s easy to rent a bike, cycle lanes are common, and road-avoiding bike paths criss-cross the city.
Unfortunately, the iconic blue-bike Melbourne Bike Share public pick-up and drop-off scheme is no longer operating.
However, whether you want to do it as a city tour or simply as a means of getting around, renting a bike in Melbourne is still very easy. Here are some of the best bike rental and tour operators in the city:
Rentabike – ideal for sight-seeing trips, located right by the Yarra river at Federation Square
Freddy’s Bike Tours – they offer a good range of guided tours or do-it-yourself itineraries, handily located between the CBD and Southbank
- St. Kilda Cycles – situated right on the beach and just a 30-minute ride from the CBD, this is the ideal rental option for exploring Melbourne’s beautiful Bayside suburbs