Cheap Car Hire Brisbane Airport
Big savings on car Rental at Brisbane Airport
Compare the best Brisbane Airport car rental deals from over 20 rental brands. Avis, Hertz, Budget, Thrifty, Europcar, Enterprise, Apex, Go Aussie and more.
* Some rental car suppliers may charge a credit card fee for amounts payable on arrival.
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Car Hire Options at Brisbane Airport
A taxi from Brisbane Airport to Brisbane’s city centre will take 15 minutes and cost between $45-$55 one-way, depending on traffic. On top of this, you’ll have to pay a Brisbane Airport access fee.
If you are going from Brisbane Airport to the CBD or the Gold Coast, then the Brisbane Airtrain is another option. However, unless you’re travelling alone, it can also be comparatively expensive at nearly $30 one-way for two adults.
So why not go at your own pace and rent a vehicle instead?
There are over 20 rental car brands operating from Brisbane Airport all competing for your business. That's a lot of websites to check out...
To make things easy, our car rental comparison search engine hunts down the very best offers available from all car rental suppliers and lists them side-by-side for you. This lets you instantly compare and find the best deals.
Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz, Enterprise, Alamo, Dollar, Keddy, National, SIXT and Thrifty Car Rentals have service desks at Brisbane airport. They can be found on level one for domestic arrivals (near the baggage claim area at both the Virgin and Qantas ends of the terminal) and level two (behind Spoon Café) for international flights. Other rental operators such as Alpha, Bargain and East Coast Car Rentals, are located near Brisbane airport and will transfer you between the terminal and their depot. Although this isn't as convenient, it is often the cheaper way to rent a car from the airport.
Before you go to pick up your vehicle, make sure you have your confirmation eVoucher, a full, valid driver's licence for each of the drivers, a credit card or cash for the deposit and suitable ID.
Book now and save! Just enter your travel details into the quote box at the top of the page to instantly compare a wide range of vehicles at the best price. Let us do all the hard work so you can make the most of your holiday in Queensland’s capital.
On-Airport Rental Brands
“On-airport” means these rental companies have check-in desks within the airport terminal.
The big advantage of this for you is convenience and speed. Once you've checked in you can jump in your hire car and get going. No waiting around for transfer vans.
But it does come at a cost. The fees to rent a car are higher than off-airport rental companies to offset the costs of being at the airport.
If you’re arriving on an international flight you’ll find rental counters on level two of Brisbane Airport’s international terminal (behind Spoon Café).
Travellers on domestic flights will find counters are located on level one, near the baggage claim area at both the Virgin and Qantas ends of Brisbane Airport’s domestic terminal.
Use our price comparison search tool to find the best prices for these on-airport car hire brands at Brisbane Airport:
Off-Airport Rental Brands
“Off-airport” companies don’t have check-in desks within the airport. This means you’ll need to make your way to their car hire depot to check in and collect your hire car.
Most provide free shuttle services and will collect you from the terminals. This gets arranged when you make your booking and you’ll need to let them know when you've arrived.
Some depots are within the airport grounds and so only a few minutes drive. Others are off the airport grounds and so take longer to get to.
Off-airport car hire companies aren’t as fast or convenient as using on-airport car rentals. But the big advantage is they are usually much cheaper.
Use our price comparison search tool to find the best prices for these off-airport car hire brands near Brisbane Airport:
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Brisbane Airport Car Hire Tips
Ways to save money on Brisbane Airport car hire
Compare prices of on-airport and off-airport brands. If you’re not in a big rush, hiring a vehicle from off-airport car hire depots can result in big savings.
But you will have to take extra time with the shuttle transfer. Transfers are usually free, but limited to opening hours, so check when you book.
Don’t hire a bigger vehicle than you require and consider if you really need all the extras you’ll be offered, such as a GPS. Google Maps on your phone will normally do the trick, provided phone data charges aren’t an issue.
With lengthy distances and long travel times between major cities, petrol stops are likely to be frequent. Fuel prices can vary widely from place to the next, so if you want to spend less at the pump use a mobile app like MotorMouth to find the best prices.
Driving in Brisbane
Brisbane Airport’s domestic and international terminals are about a kilometre apart, and it’s normally a 20-minute drive to get to Brisbane’s CBD (but you should allow twice as long during peak hour traffic). If you’re travelling further afield, allow an hour and 15 minutes to get to Gold Coast or Coolangatta, an hour and a half to get to the Sunshine Coast on the Bruce Highway (M1) northbound, and an hour and 45 minutes on the Warrego Highway (A2) westbound if you’re headed to Toowoomba. Getting there should be easy enough unless you’re caught in peak hour traffic when the roads fill with commuters headed to Brisbane, the Sunshine Coast, and the Gold Coast.
Your quickest route into the city from Brisbane Airport will be via Airport Drive (which becomes the Airport Link) then onto the Pacific Motorway (M3). Use the M3 too if you’re heading from Brisbane Airport to the Gold Coast.
You’ll need to pay a toll to use many of these roads (including the Gateway Motorway, the AirportLinkM7, Logan Motorway, Clem7 Tunnel, Go Between Bridge, and Legacy Way). Check to make sure your rental car is fitted with an electronic tag (e-Tag) to facilitate easy toll payment. With an e-Tag, the tolls are normally added to your car hire charge but rental companies can manage these payments differently.
If you’re driving into the Brisbane CBD you should find plenty of parking options, although most street parking is metered. Street parking is metered (you can pay by cash or card) and there are also many commercial parking stations. Try to avoid rush hour traffic in the CBD (7am-9am and 4pm-6pm on weekdays). You’re meant to be on holiday, after all. Brisbane has a lot of one-way streets, so be careful when turning. It’s easy to walk around the city centre, so consider parking where you can find a parking spot and then walking or taking public transport as you explore the inner city.
Return with a full tank
Stop at a nearby petrol station and top up the tank before returning your vehicle. The extra 5 or 10 minutes this takes will definitely save you money.
If you return the car with the tank not full then the car hire company will charge a high price to top up the tank.
There are petrol stations close to Brisbane Airport, including a 24-hour Shell Coles Express service station with the Brisbane Airport service centre, and a BNE Service Centre 10 minutes drive from the airport at 3 Great Barrier Road. Click here to find other petrol stations close to Brisbane Airport.
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Attractions AROUND Brisbane
Brisbane is the hub of activity for the state of Queensland and rightfully so. Nominated as one of the top-ten most beautiful cities in the world in the 2020 edition of Rough Guides, Brisbane has a lot to offer.
Picking up a rental car at Brisbane Airport gives you the freedom and flexibility to make the most of your time exploring the Brisbane and surrounding areas, including Brisbane's renowned Queensland architecture, botanical gardens and much more. Below are some of our favourite attractions that we know you will love. For more ideas, check out the Visit Brisbane website.
Brisbane City Botanical gardens
If you're looking for a slice of colonial history, you don't need to go much further than the City Botanical gardens.
The gardens were originally planted by convicts, in order to feed the prison colony — in 1825. Fast forward to the present day and you will find lush rainforest glades, ancient trees and sub-tropical and exotic plant species.
The gardens are set out in themed sections including a scented garden, bamboo grove, a tropical display dome, arid zone and cactus garden. There’s also a Japanese Garden designed by Kenzo Ogata, one of Japan’s leading landscape architects.
You might also choose to take a stroll through the largest collection of Australian rainforest trees in the world or visit the national freedom wall — which commemorates those who have bought peace to Australia.
Children will be entertained with the hide ’n’ seek nature trail and free guided walks are available at 11am and 1pm. After a long day of flower spotting and tree hugging, you might like to take a break at The Gardens Cafe which includes stunning views of the gardens and lake.
If the night sky is more appealing to you, the Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium (the largest in Queensland) features a range of interesting shows and displays all year round. The botanical gardens also include a library and plant census which provides extensive information on the plants at the gardens.
Situated at Mt Coot-tha Road in Toowong, which is approximately 15 minutes drive from Brisbane city centre, entry is free to the gardens.
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
You can’t get more Australian than cuddling koalas and feeding kangaroos, which is why the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is so special.
Just 12 kilometres (7.4 miles) from the city centre, this is the largest koala sanctuary in the world and, as it was founded in 1927, it is also the oldest. The 4.6 hectare (10 acre) park began with just two koalas — Jack and Jill, and was named after a hoop pine which was planted by the original owners.
Whether you choose to feed a kangaroo or unwind in the koala forest, this is a truly memorable experience. Gorgeous rainbow lorikeets are known to fly to the sanctuary for the nectar which is specially prepared and visitors can feed the birds twice a day. Tasmanian devils, echidnas, wombats and various reptiles can also be found in the park, alongside a small farm where sheep-dog trials take place on a regular basis.
Don’t forget to bring your camera, slip on some sunscreen and slap on a hat because the sun can get very hot over the summer months. There are two entrances into the parkland, including one from the Brisbane River and an entrance from the car park. Travel from Brisbane city to the park takes 20 minutes via the M5 motorway.
Queensland Gallery of Modern Art
Based in the city centre, the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) is part of the Queensland Cultural Centre and is the largest gallery of modern and contemporary art in Australia. The gallery stands out from the Brisbane landscape, thanks to the modern lines of the museum's architecture — which was designed by Architectus, following an Architect Selection Competition.
GOMA includes over 17,000 historical, modern and contemporary art works as well as a variety of international exhibitions.
Home to the only dedicated cinema facility in an Australian art museum, GOMA’s Australian Cinémathèque showcases a great variety of ongoing films and videos which you will not find elsewhere. These films often document the work of international cinema and film-makers and will include silent films, which are accompanied by live music.
As part of the Bradfield Highway, The Story Bridge spans the Brisbane River and holds the record of Australia's longest cantilever bridge. Opened in 1940, the bridge now carries an average of 97,000 vehicles each day, with three lanes of traffic travelling in either direction as well as a shared cycle and pedestrian way.
If you need a good tale to tell your friends back home, take the Story Bridge Adventure Climb. It will take you two hours and includes a gradual incline to the two high points, approximately 80 metres above sea level with 360-degree views.
From the top of the bridge, your reward is some breathtaking views of the river, surrounding mountain ranges and Moreton Bay Islands. While you are taking in the magnificent views, an experienced climb leader will tell you the story of Story Bridge, and the city that built it.
As one of only three bridge-climbs in the world, this is an opportunity you don’t get to try every day. And if you’re really confident (or slightly insane), you might also like to try abseiling 30 metres off the bridge. Operating mainly on a Sunday morning, abseil climbs are not for the faint of heart. For safety reasons, the maximum weight restriction for abseiling is 115 kilograms (253 pounds) and 130 kilograms (286 pounds) for the bridge walk.