Do I need to book Australian Accommodations In Advance?

by Grant
(Canada)

We are planning to travel the coastal route from Melbourne to Brisbane in March. Would we be wise to book accommodations in advance or find them as we travel? It is difficult to know how far we will travel in a day.

It would be nice to get some local insight. I have travelled in both Europe and the British Isles finding accommodations as needed, not sure about Australia.


Thanks for the question. It is such a tough one to know whether to book ahead accommodation when you are travelling between places. I have done both and there and there are pros and cons of each.

It depends if searching for accommodation when you arrive somewhere is going to be stressful and ruin your holiday if you don't find what you are looking for.

It will also depend upon the type of accom you are prepared to stay in.

However if you don't mind having to drive to the next place or taking any accommodation regardless of standard or price and think it is all part of the adventure then you know the answer!

From a local perspective, one of the most overlooked factors when people visit Australia from overseas is the distance between places and the lack of major facilities in the towns along the way.

I notice you are from Canada, which has many similarities to Australia in that respect, however if you are from Toronto or eastern Canada then you should think more like you were travelling from Calgary through the rockies to Vancouver!

That might give you the perspective a little. I hope that analogy doesn't offend, it is hard to visualise Australia and it's size, even for me and I have lived here over 20 years!

Here are some other pointers, google maps can be a great help to planning your trip. Especially if you have a rough idea of how long you want to take to get from Melbourne to Brisbane.

Another consideration is what might be going on during the time that you travel. You don't always know what you might encounter along the way.

Once on the Great Ocean Road (coastal road Melbourne to Adelaide) we had a spur of the moment weekend away and had no idea we had decided to stay in a town which was the night stop on a cycling race. There were NO rooms in town that night!

We had to drive 40 minutes inland to find a place to stay. That was of course in the days before google maps and iphones! And the roads were barely on a map anyway.

We made it an adventure, but it could have been a disaster.

Google maps times for travel are not too bad, but they assume you want to get from A to B as fast as possible so factor in a lot of excess, you don't want to be rushing.

Around the time you are planning to visit the major considerations are clashes with school holidays, Easter (which is usually in March or April) and any local holidays or festivals.

If you have an idea of where you want to stay then you can check for any local festivities and even contact or check availability of places to stay.

One more tip! Sydney will really slow you down, so work out what you want to do with Sydney, how long you want to stay there and if you want to be in the heart or out of it.

It is a city that I love, but find is very time consuming to get around.

Have fun, and please let me know if this was helpful.

Many thanks for the question. Cheers,

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Mar 24, 2010
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Good Local Perspective
by: Grant

Thanks for the local perspective.

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