Most people are familiar with the best way of getting to and from the airport in their own city. However, when visiting another city it’s often hard to know the cheapest, easiest and best wheelchair accessible way to get to and from the airport. On a visit to Brisbane recently I used a taxi and it cost around $60 for a regular cab one-way to my hotel, Rydges South Bank. On my last visit to Brisbane I was keen to save money so I thought I’d try the Airtrain, and it was surprisingly good.
It’s only a short walk or wheel across the road from the domestic terminal (also available at the International Terminal) to the Airtrain. Lifts provide access to the platform and tickets can be bought from the ticket booth. I paid $43 for a return trip on the train so it’s much cheaper than a taxi. Clearly this doesn’t offer a door-to-door service and won’t suit those travelling with lots of luggage.
Railway staff provide a portable ramp for accessing the train and radio ahead to your destination station so staff are ready with the same assistance on arrival.
Wheelchair seating is clearly marked on the outside of the carriage and inside the carriage.
I’ve noticed transport in Brisbane has clear signage regarding making accessible seating available to those who need it and Braille signage is also provided.
Accessible stand-alone unisex bathrooms are available on the airport platform and there’s even an accessible bathroom on the train.
The Airtrain services both the domestic and international terminals.
You can save 15% by pre-purchasing your ticket online. You can read more about Airtrain here. Companion Card is accepted with one carer/support worker travelling free to all Brisbane City and Suburban stations. However, the Companion Card holder requires a valid ticket to travel.
The Airtrain is WIFI enabled so you can save your data while you travel.
I found the train to be a clean, comfortable and efficient way of making my way to the city. A taxi to the door is definitely easier but the train was more economic.
The station at South Bank provides a short level walk to Rydges at South Bank which has excellent accessible accommodation which you can read about here.
Like most airports in Australia there’s accessible taxi ranks at Brisbane Airport. Follow the access symbol signage to get an accessible taxi. The wait is usually shorter in the accessible queue. Remember to apply for taxi vouchers if you are eligible. You can read more about this here.
Con-X-ion bus transfers offer a door-to-door service from the airport. Wheelchair users are required to book a minimum of two weeks in advance if travelling with a wheelchair. Con-x-ion has only one bus equipped with wheelchair hoist capabilities and this bus will need to be reserved in advance. Con-x-ion buses are not fitted with anchor points for wheelchairs. Wheelchairs and walking aids must be collapsible as they will be stored in the bus trailer. Mobility scooters can be no heavier than 28kgs and must fit in the trailer.
All passengers need to ensure they can board, disembark (via hoist assistance if booked) and move around the bus unaided or, alternatively travel with a care assistant or companion.
You Can read more about the Con-X-ion service here.
ACCESSIBLE ACTIVITIES BRISBANE
Once you have your transport sorted, I’ve got a list of accessible activities in Brisbane to get you started. Check out these activities.
If you’re a Brisbane local, or you’ve travelled to Brisbane and have airport transport tips let us know in the comments below.
I live in Brisbane and a wheelchair user myself. It is very hilly in most inner-city areas. its is easier to get around in powered equipment. If you are looking for some activities that are fun, new, in a reasonable flat area and you are willing to take a half hour train ride is the Robelle Domain at Springfield central which includes the Orion lagoon, play equipment (and a splash pad), a rainforest boardwalk, Parklands and a man-made waterfall. Lots of food options too. there is a cafe in the parklands as well as the central tavern (located in education city, near the university) or you have a wide range of options at the Orion shopping centre.
Thanks for that information Chloe. It’s always great to hear from a local.