Kate and Gerard love road trips. In the past 10 years of marriage, they’ve been all over the world. They have either bought or rented a car for a long route through the country, wherever they’ve been.
They’ve travelled Europe, Thailand, Cambodia and Hawaii this way. But they both agree that the best place for a road trip is Australia.
Here’s what they learned on their first trip down under:
How they did it
Careful planning goes a long way when you want to go on a road trip, in a country you’ve never visited before. Kate and Gerard spent days researching everything they could before they actually landed in Australia.
Their trip was a month long and they wanted to get a used car to travel up to the Gold Coast (Sydney to Brisbane).
Coolangatta, Gold Coast. Image source: Bayview Rainbow Bay
They got in touch with a seller on the Australian version of Gumtree and negotiated a price before they landed.
They also took the time to go over the rules and regulations in different parts of Australia regarding cars, insurance and road safety.
What they checked for
Gerard went over the basics to check the Toyota Landcruiser Troop Carrier. He knew what he wanted was a 4WD, that at least 2 months or more registration.
He checked the milage, windows, brakes and engine oil. Each of the car lights were checked. He also requested a quick service update and a tyre pressure measurement.
A Toyota Landcruiser Troop Carrier, or “Troopy”. Image source: Pinterest
Gerar even asked if the owner had a caravan extension. Since the owner didn’t have one, he arranged for a caravan to fit the car. Once the payment and registration was complete, they were on their way.
What was the car like
Considering the Toyota Landcruiser was thoroughly inspected, the couple were not expecting any unnecessary repairs or breakdowns along the way.
It was an absolute pleasure to drive the sturdy car. The Pacific Highway is a modern freeway, so they didn’t encounter any uneven or unexpected terrain throughout their journey.
Where they went
The coastal route between Sydney and Brisbane is one of the most popular road trip routes in the world. Campers love this route and it’s popular with tourists throughout the year.
The couple took approximately twelve hours driving time to cover the more than 950 kilometers on this journey.
They took stops at Port Stephens, Port Macquarie, Coffs Harbour, Byron Bay and, of course, the Gold Coast.
Surfers at The Pass, Byron Bay, NSW. Image source: Mike Greenslade
At the end
The journey ended in Brisbane (inland from the Gold Coast), where the couple had already found a buyer for the car over Gumtree.
The price was negotiated and paperwork was completed along the way. So all that was left was handing over the keys and a long flight back home.
Kate and Gerard are meticulous planners and never leave home unprepared. But for the spontaneous camper, landing in Australia, buying a used car and setting off on an adventure should be relatively easy.
Just ask for some help with the local taxes and regulations and make sure you’re an experienced driver.