The Road Rules You Need to Know Before You Drive in Queensland, Australia 

If you’re planning on driving in Queensland, Australia, there are a few road rules you need to know before you hit the open road. From ’roundabouts’ to ‘Give Way’, these rules may be different than what you’re used to back home. So, before you get behind the wheel, take a look at this helpful guide to the road rules in Queensland.

Speed Limits 

The speed limit in Queensland is generally 100km/h unless otherwise posted. However, there are certain areas where the speed limit is lower, such as school zones and hospital precincts. Be sure to keep an eye out for signs indicating a change in speed limit. 

Drink Driving 

The blood alcohol content (BAC) limit for drivers in Queensland is 0.05%. This means that if you have more than 0.05% of alcohol in your system, you are not legally allowed to drive. 

Seatbelts 

All drivers and passengers must wear seatbelts while the car is in motion. If you are caught not wearing a seatbelt, you can be fined $400. 

Using Phones while Driving 

It is illegal to use your phone while driving unless you are parked out of traffic or using hands-free technology. If you are caught using your phone while driving, you can be fined $1,000. 

Roundabouts        

A roundabout is a type of intersection where traffic flows around a central island. Vehicles approaching a roundabout must give way to any vehicles already in the roundabout. 

Give Way        

drivers approaching an intersection controlled by stop signs or red lights must give way to all other vehicles already at the intersection regardless of whether they are turning left, right or going straight ahead. Failing to give way can result in a fine of $400.

Turning Right on Red Lights        

It is against the law to turn right at a red light unless there is a sign that indicates otherwise. Fines for this offence start at $261.00  

If you visiting from the United States, here’s a summary of driving tips:

  1. In Australia, we drive on the left side of the road. This can be confusing for American drivers, who are used to driving on the right. 
  2. Speed limits in Australia are expressed in kilometres per hour, rather than miles per hour. The speed limit on most highways is 100 km/h (about 62 mph). 
  3. Unlike in the US, there is no minimum speed limit on highways in Australia. However, drivers must be able to maintain a safe speed for the conditions. 
  4. Seat belts are mandatory for all passengers in a car in Australia. 
  5. Headlights must be turned on at all times while driving, even during daytime hours. 
  6. Australian drivers yield to pedestrians at crosswalks, even when there is no traffic light present. 
  7. Right turns on red are not allowed in Queensland, unless specifically signposted. 
  8. When parallel parking behind another car, Australian drivers must leave at least three meters (about 10 feet) between their car and the car in front of them. 
  9. Fuel is measured and sold by the litre in Australia, rather than by the gallon like in the US.
  10. Finally, it’s important to know that Australians use a different vocabulary than Americans when it comes to cars and driving. For example, an “American” would say “I’m going to fill up my gas tank” while an “Australian” would say “I’m going to fill up my petrol tank.” Other common phrases include “boot” (trunk), “bonnet” (hood), and “windscreen” (windshield).

Before driving in Queensland, be sure to brush up on the local road rules. From speed limits to seatbelts, there are a few things that might be different from what you’re used to back home. But don’t worry—once you familiarize yourself with the basics, driving in Queensland will be a breeze! Driving in Australia can be a little bit daunting for Americans who are used to driving on the right side of the road with speed limits expressed in miles per hour! However, if you remember to drive on the left and keep an eye out for pedestrians at crosswalks, you’ll be sure to have a safe and enjoyable trip Down Under! For more information, visit the Transport and Main roads website.