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Melbourne Airport Taxis (MEL)

Melbourne Airport is one of Australia’s largest airports, handling over 27 million passengers per year. The only airport larger than Melbourne is Sydney Airport, with over 35 million passengers per annum. Melbourne Airport is found on the outskirts of Melbourne city, approximately 23 km, or 14 miles northwest of the city centre, and provides a very important air gateway for both domestic and international passengers. Since that the airport is located adjacent to the suburb of Tullamarine, it is also commonly referred to as the Tullamarine Airport. This name mainly distinguishes it from the other three smaller airports in the region. Passengers can travel by taxi to and from Melbourne Airport, however, taxi services are always more expensive than the public bus services available.

The airport of Melbourne consists of four terminal buildings, which are each dedicated to either domestic or international passengers. Terminal 2 is the international terminal, and there is a taxi rank directly outside this part of the airport. Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 are the domestic terminals, and also each have a taxi rank for the convenience of their passengers. Terminal 4 handles all the budget airline carriers in operation from Melbourne Airport, such as Tiger Airways Australia, and is located just past Terminal 3, on the far southern end of the airport’s terminals. The terminals are all within walking distance of one another, therefore there is no need for additional transport should you need a transfer flight from the international, or domestic, terminals. The layout of Melbourne Airport is therefore very convenient for all passengers, as many of the larger airports, for example, Sydney Airport, have terminals located at further distances from one another.

Similar to taxi services in all other areas of the world, a taxi from Melbourne Airport will be considerably more expensive than the public bus services, and especially those to central Melbourne, as the airport is located quite far from the main city area. A single bus ticket on the Skybuses will cost around $16.00, while a taxi journey to Melbourne will be between $80.00 and $85.00. These figures are quoted in Australian dollars. However, many passengers prefer to travel by taxi to their next destination, as a taxi generally offers a much quicker service than a bus, and will always arrive at the very curb side of the requested location. Buses may take longer due to their stops along the way for other passengers, and drop the majority of their passengers off at bus stations in the city. From here, a taxi may be needed in any case to reach the ultimate destination.

Taxis in Melbourne usually run on a metered system, which means that the taxi fare is calculated according to the number of kilometres travelled, but there may also be additional costs that are not included in the metered fare. At the airport, a $2.00 per vehicle parking fee is applicable for passengers leaving Melbourne Airport from any of the taxi ranks, and $3.00 is charged for pre-booking a taxi or limousine from the premium parking area opposite Terminal 2 (international terminal). The metered rates per kilometre are also more expensive during later evening hours and early morning hours, and additional charges may be made for luggage loaded.

 Passengers arriving at Melbourne Airport are advised to only use the official taxi services from the airport. Problems have arisen in the past from unlicensed and illegal taxi and chauffeur operators at the airport. Any invitation for transport made from someone within the terminal buildings should be declined, and the incident should preferably be reported to the Victorian Taxi Directorate at the following telephone numbers:  +61 3 9320 4300, or toll free, at 1800 638 802. Unofficial taxi operators, also referred to as ‘touters’, may overcharge for their services, provide sub-standard service, and may also drive vehicles which are not adequately insured. Legitimate taxi drivers will always be waiting at their taxi in the relevant areas allocated to this type of transport at Melbourne Airport, and will not be found in the arrival areas of the buildings.

From Melbourne Airport, passengers can also hire a limousine from various private companies, or make arrangements for a chauffeur driven vehicle. These services require an advanced reservation. Taxis at the airport may also provide additional services, such as vehicles that are suitable for use by disabled passengers in wheelchairs, and child seats, for families with babies or young children. Enquiries for these services can be made at the information desks of the airport. Another similar option for transport from Melbourne Airport is a private transfer, which could work out to be slightly cheaper than a taxi if there are a couple of passengers. Private transfers are ideal for larger groups of travellers.

The official taxis at Melbourne Airport are considered to provide reliable and convenient services to all areas in and around Melbourne city, and their drivers are generally very friendly and helpful. A journey by taxi to central Melbourne will take approximately half an hour, depending on traffic conditions.