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Gold Coast Light Rail

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by Denise H-C (subscribe)
Freelance writer with a BA double majoring in Literature and Australian History who loves finding random places of social or historical treasure whilst travelling around visiting festivals, markets and quaint cafes with my husband and baby
Published July 27th 2014
How to use them - what's hot and what's not about GC Trams

If you haven't yet tried the Gold Coast Light Rail network, or Trams if you like, then you definitely must put it on your to do list.

We all know the Gold Coast Highway as one continuous peak hour. The Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach districts of shopping, restaurants and tourism are a nightmare to drive to and even worse to find a park in.

In Summer there's nothing better than a relaxing day at the beach, but getting to the beach strip on the Gold Coast and finding a park is an exercise in patience.

The new Light Rail network is a great solution to these problems. Sure the construction period dragged out for years and caused a lot of problems for residents and shop owners, but now that it's here it's definitely worth the wait.

We rode the Light Rail network from its start at Broadbeach all the way to the end at the University, and then back again. The convenience is fantastic. The trams travel through 16 stations in total:

The 16 stations are:

Gold Coast University Hospital
Griffith University
Queen Street
Gold Coast Hospital
Southport South
Broadwater Parklands
Main Beach
Surfers Paradise North
Cypress Avenue
Cavill Avenue
Surfers Paradise
Florida Gardens
Broadbeach North
Broadbeach South

There are a couple of downsides to travelling on the trams though. The main one definitely being the price. If you don't have a GoCard then you will get stung fairly badly by the cost of a trip. In accordance with the initial pricing, the whole trip one way goes through zones 13 to 15. That is, two zones. The cost for one adult travelling through two zones is $7.20. If you then want to come back, it's another $7.20. A one zone trip, that is 13 to 14, or zone 14 to 15, is $6.10 without a GoCard. With a GoCard you save approximately 30%. The pricing may change over time so check the website if you're unsure.

The other downside is that holiday makers and locals use it a lot with their children. On the Sunday we used the Light Rail, nobody asked their children to stand up, so we ended up with about 25% of the seats filled with children between the age of 4 and 12, and lots of adults standing up. But that's only a small downside for the convenience of travelling on the rail, after all, you're not really on it that long.

An interactive map of all of the stations the trams travel along can be found here.

At the time of writing this, in July 2014, the light rail service will run from 5am to 11:50pm, Monday to Thursday, and 24 hours throughout Friday and Saturday until 11:50pm Sunday night. The current anticipated scheduling is :

Monday - Friday
00:00 - 05:00 No Service
05:00 - 7:00 Every 15 mins
7:00 - 19:00 Every 7.5 mins
19:00 - 24:00 Every 15 min

00:00 - 05:00 Every 30 mins
05:00 - 7:00 Every 15 mins
7:00 - 19:00 Every 10 mins
19:00 - 24:00 Every 15 mins

00:00 - 05:00 Every 30 mins
05:00 - 7:00 Every 15 mins
7:00 - 19:00 Every 10 mins
19:00 - 24:00 Every 15 mins

Check the official website for more information, timetables and updates before use in case the operators alter any times or fares.
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Why? Convenience
When: 7 days a week
Where: Broadbeach to the GC University
Cost: Varies, see website or above
Your Comment
I've been the only person standing on a bus at 8m pregnant. Not one person offered me a seat. Tradies, office workers, students, not one. Sign of the times I think.
by porte (score: 1|16) 1999 days ago
great idea just used the service august but ridiculous that it has not been joined to nerang station especially considering games to be held on gold coast in future and the ease for tourists to get to gold coast from brisbane
by micks (score: 0|4) 1996 days ago
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