About Darwin International Airport (DRW)
Address: Mcmillians Road, Darwin Not (3), 0800, Nt, Nt
Darwin serves as the capital of the Northern Territory, and gateway to an ample array of outdoor recreational activities and historical destinations. As Australia’s tenth-busiest airport, Darwin International Airport is well equipped with transportation options to the city center (8 km / 4 mi) and around Australia’s “Top End.”
Driving is by the most popular means of getting around Darwin and the surrounding attractions. Most visitors to (DRW) will head straight to the car hire counters in the Arrivals Hall, where they’ll find a generous selection of reputable airport car rental brands like Avis, Budget, Hertz, and National.
Although it’s a pleasant 15-minute commute from the airport to downtown Darwin, many popular destinations like Berry Springs Nature Park and Crocosaurus Cove are at least an hour away.
Australia has an extensive system of well-maintained roads and drivers will enjoy light traffic on the highways and plenty of parking in urban areas. However, check with your car rental agent about any restrictions that may apply to travelling in remote or outback areas.
Australia utilizes right-hand drive vehicles, which may pose a problem for drivers from other countries with left-hand drive. Therefore, to minimize your hassle of getting used to driving on “the wrong side of the road,” it’s probably better to rent a car with automatic transmission.
Driving in Australia obviously requires a valid driver’s license, and foreign travelers with an English language license are permitted to drive for three months. For non-English license holders, you’ll need to apply for an International Driving Permit (IDP) in your home countries.
Choosing your car
With such a wide range of destinations and attractions, choosing your car will be one of the most important decisions of your visit to Darwin and the Northern Territory.
The best rides for inter-city driving are small and mid-sized cars such as the Toyota Corolla and Nissan Almera, which have better fuel efficiency (and lower rates). If you’re planning to hit the outback, a four-wheel drive is essential. The Mitsubishi Outlander is one of the most popular 4x4 rental vehicles. Meanwhile, if you’re seeking to get around in style and luxury, the easy-to-drive Holden Commodore SV6 seats five passengers and looks sharp on the road. For group travelers, a 7-9 seater people carrier like the Hyundai Imax will comfortably accommodate the crew. Regardless of your travel plans, you’ll have no trouble finding ideal model for your particular needs.
Tips and advice
Most rental cars are prohibited from off-road driving; however, most destinations can be reached by paved (sealed) roads
Driving outside the city at night is strongly discouraged due to the abundance of wildlife activity across the flat terrain
Check with your airport rental car agency if the vehicle’s insurance waiver covers animal damage — most don’t
The Northern Territory, and particularly Darwin, is exceptionally hot, so rent a car with air conditioning
The car rental prices change on a daily basis at (DRW), so shop around for the best rate that fits your budget
The Northern Territory covers a vast range of acreage, and gas (petrol) stations tend to be few and far between. So keep your eye on the fuel gauge and always be prepared with emergency supplies when traveling great distances