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Explore with a Gold Coast Airport car rental
The Gold Coast is all about fun in the sun—and we mean fun of all varieties. There’s retail therapy to be had, bars and nightclubs to fill the evening hours, surfing and sunbathing on vast stretches of sand, delicious places to dine, and that’s without mentioning one of the biggest drawcards: a trio of expansive theme parks offering endless excitement for all ages. Do it all at your own pace with your own transport!
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Essential information for your Gold Coast car rental
To the north of the Gold Coast lies bold and vibrant Brisbane, while to the south is the border with New South Wales. A car hire on the Gold Coast opens up many possibilities for a visitor, whether they plan to remain in the area and enjoy the highlights of the coast like Surfers Paradise, or head out and explore a little more of beautiful Australia.
Gold Coast Airport (IATA: OOL) is located at the southern end of the Gold Coast region, near Coolangatta, on busy major roads of Gold Coast Highway and M1 / Pacific Motorway, straddling the border of Queensland and New South Wales. When these two states are in different time zones over summer, the airport operates on Queensland time. It was originally known as Coolangatta Airport.
There is one main terminal that offers travellers all the necessary amenities: a wide range of shopping and dining outlets, ATMs, bathroom facilities, lockers for hire, and free WiFi. It is open from 4:30 am to 11 pm each day. There is short-term and long-term parking available, as well as premium covered parking.
Car rental counters can be found opposite the domestic arrivals area.
Driving tips for your Gold Coast car hire
To fully enjoy your time on the fabulous Gold Coast, you’ll want to steer clear of any road-related stress. Whether you are driving in the area for the first time or in Australia for the first time, it’s a good idea to brush up on some of the basics to ensure a safe trip.
We’ve collated a few top tips for those picking up a car rental at Gold Coast Airport. Read these and equip yourself for a visit that’s memorable in all the good ways and none of the bad ones.
- In Australia, all traffic drives on the left. This means that drivers sit on the right-hand side of the car (in the vast majority of vehicles) and overtake on the right.
- Cyclists are common in the area, so keep a close eye out for them.
- Default speed limits are 50 kph for built-up areas and 100 kph for open roads and rural areas. However, there are variations to these limits on particular stretches of road. Always check the posted signs.
- The Gold Coast can experience heavy traffic, and this can extend to the highway between the coast and Brisbane. Avoid travelling here during peak commute hours if possible.
- The legal blood alcohol concentration limit for fully-licenced drivers in Queensland is 0.05%. To ensure you are under the limit, we highly recommend abstaining entirely from alcohol before driving.
- Queensland can be sweltering! Always keep extra water for yourself and for the radiator in your car.
What to see and do with a rental car from Gold Coast Airport
Wondering where your hired wheels could take you? We have put together a few ideas. There’s plenty to see and do within a short drive of the Gold Coast, and these destinations are all easy to get to in less than two hours of driving.
Just an hour’s drive north will see you in Queensland’s largest city, an energetic metropolis with boundless bar, dining, and entertainment options. If you’re looking for a bit of urban energy, Brisbane is the destination for you—be sure to stroll beside the river or cruise along it to get a feel for the city.
This beautiful region lies inland of the Gold Coast. It’s the ideal destination for nature fans and scenery seekers, featuring an abundance of stunning landscapes from lofty mountain peaks to tranquil lakes and ancient rainforests. Hike in Lamington National Park in south east Queensland, fish on one of the scenic dams, chase waterfalls, and stay a night or two at one of the charming small villages in the area like Kalbar or Harrisville.
Did you know that the famous coastal town and surf mecca Byron Bay is less than an hour and a half of driving away from the Gold Coast? This is Australia’s most easterly point and home to the iconic Cape Byron lighthouse. The town has a fun, relaxed vibe, lots of festivals, and some spectacular beaches.
Looking for something a little out of the ordinary? The counterculture and hippie ethos of Nimbin makes it an interesting and enjoyable destination. Enjoy the colourful buildings and characters, shop for hemp products and handicrafts, and learn about the traditional landowners, the Bundjalung people.
North Stradbroke Island
It’s an hour's drive to Cleveland, where car ferries depart for the island. “Straddie”, as it is locally known, is a beautiful and down-to-earth place, a nature lover’s dream. Surfing, wildlife encounters, eco-tourism activities, indigenous experiences, and more are all on offer here. Stay a few days to see the beautiful landscapes and enjoy the island’s three townships.
Other popular locations to visit
Wondering where else you could start your Australian adventure? North to south coast, and west to east coast, car rentals will make your holidays more memorable. From the Gold Coast, you head south to explore New South Wales and make your way to Sydney. If you have more time, you can also book a Melbourne car rental or make your way to Hobart and pick up a car hire to complete your Australian tour.
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Car rental Gold Coast Airport: Frequently asked questions
How much is it to hire a car at Gold Coast airport?
There is a wide range of suppliers at Gold Coast airport offering an array of vehicles, and a car rental can cost anywhere from AUD$40 per day for a compact or economy model to more than AUD$400 per day for an SUV or station wagon. Take advantage of GoSee’s user-friendly search function to find a car hire deal that fits your budget. Consider checking out GoSee's Gold Coast motorhome rentals section for your other travel needs.
What is the cheapest car rental agency at Gold Coast airport?
If you’re searching for cheap car hire deals at Gold Coast/Coolangatta Airport, start by looking at off-airport suppliers with free shuttles. These tend to be the most affordable, although that is not always the case. Alpha, Apex, and Jucy are low-cost options for Gold Coast airport car hire.
What age do you have to be to rent a car from Gold Coast airport?
To hire cars at Gold Coast Airport and anywhere in Australia, you must be at least 21 years of age. However, some suppliers may restrict rentals to those aged under 25, or add an extra fee for drivers aged 21-24.
What car hire companies are at Gold Coast Airport?
There is an array of car rental companies offering car hire at Gold Coast Airport! These include but are not limited to Thrifty, Europcar, Budget, Alpha, Ace, Hertz, Apex, Apollo, Bargain Car Rentals, Alamo, Jucy, and Avis Car Rental in Gold Coast Airport.
Which car hire companies at Gold Coast airport have updated their vehicle cleaning and safety policies because of coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Most hire car Gold Coast Airport suppliers have updated their cleaning and safety policies due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Look for “Enhanced Cleaning” in the search results to learn more about the health-related policies of each car rental company serving Gold Coast.
Can I rent a car from Gold Coast Airport and return it somewhere else?
Yes, many suppliers of car rental Gold Coast will allow one-way rentals. Some may charge an extra fee for this. Conduct a search and specify your desired start and finish locations to see the options.
Where is the best place to find car parks in and around the Gold Coast?
What are the speed limit restrictions on the Gold Coast?
Default speed limits are 50 kph for built-up areas and 100 kph for open roads and rural areas. However, there are variations to these limits on particular stretches of road. Always check the posted signs before driving your car hire Gold Coast Airport.