In this section you will find traveller airport reviews as well as our Sydney Airport Guide with info on WiFi, lounges, facilities and services....and yes, even the names of some airport hotels in case you decide that sleeping in the airport is not for you!
A good tip: drag one of the hard chairs away from the noisy people, tip it backwards against a wall, and you have a semi-comfortable bed. - tranquilo_traveler
photo credit: russavia / Wikimedia
I arrived at the domestic terminal at 10:30pm for a 6am flight to Cairns, I decided to get there earlier as I'd read that the airport closed at 11 so I didn't want to be stuck outside. I arrived and there were already a few people lying out across the couches etc, I sat in the large leather chairs where you can pay for a massage and tried to get settled, the police came past and didn't bother us but then a security man came and said the terminal was closing until 4am and our options were to go and sleep in the international terminal, or a 24 hour McDonalds down the road.
I chose to go to the international but it costs 5 dollars to go between terminals on the train and the train doesn't start running until 5am so if you have a 6am flight like me the only option on getting back is a taxi which costs about 20 dollars, luckily there are always people to split it with.
When I got to the international there were lots of people there as it was the day of the Christchurch Earthquake so lots of people had cancelled flights. I went through to arrivals and got settled in a corner when at midnight another security person told us all to move back to the entrance as they were closing until 4am. There were a few rows of chairs but they were mostly taken when I was there so I slept on the floor by the lifts, someone checked everyones passport and they put shutters down around us.
It was annoying to be moved but I found it okay for a couple of hours, the most annoying part was if you have to get back to domestic before the trains run you have to get a taxi and you get a draft through when people keep walking past the exit to go out and smoke etc. On the plus there is Free WiFi so if you have your own computer it's a great way to kill a few hours, there are computers with free internet but once they move you back to the entrance there aren't any.
Have you been to Sydney Airport recently? Tell us about it!
In this guide we may refer to locations as "landside" and "airside". Landside is the public area of the terminal located in the non-secure zone, before security. Airside is the secure area of the terminal that you must reach by going through security.
- Virgin Blue Lounge - Location: 2, airside
- Qantas Club - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gates 8-37 and Terminal 2, airside, opposite Gate 49
- First Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gate 8-37
- Air New Zealand Lounge - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gates 59-63
- Silver Kris Lounge - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gates 59-63
- The Golden Lounge - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gates 59-63
- Emirates Lounge - Location: Terminal 1, airside, towards Gates 59-63
- Rex Lounge - Location: Terminal 2, airside, Gate 47
Free WiFi is available at Sydney Airport for two hours. Connect to “Free Internet by sponsors name & SYD”. Additionally, free internet kiosks are available throughout Terminal 1 and at Everywhere Internet in Terminal 2 (departure level).
If sleeping in the Sydney Airport does not appeal to you (and we really wouldn't blame you), there are hotels near the airport....
- Rydges Sydney Airport - Across from the Intenational Terminal.
- Hotel Formule 1 - budget hotel located a 10 minute walk from the airport. (Shuttle Hours: Every 30 minutes between the hours 6am - 11pm. Fee: $)
- Ibis Sydney Airport (Shuttle Hours: unknown. Fee: AUD 6 each way)
- Mercure Sydney Airport - (Shuttle Hours: 5am - 11pm. Fee: AUD 6 each way)
- Stamford Sydney Airport Hotel - (Shuttle Hours: unknown. Fee: AUD 6 each way)
To find a cheap room, there is a list of hotels near Sydney Airport on Tripadvisor that can be sorted by price.
- ATMs / Cash Machines - There are ANZ Bank, Travelex and Westpac ATMs located throughout Terminals 1 and 2. Travelex has 33 multi-currency ATMs throughout the airport.
- Car Rentals - Avis • Budget • Europcar • Hertz • Redspot • Thrifty. Location: Arrivals Area of both terminals.
- Children's Play Areas - Locations: Terminal 1 - Landside, between counters A & B and at the end of check-in counter J / Airside, between Gates 31 & 33 and Gates 58 & 59 in pier C.
- Children's Cinema - The Kid's Cinema provides a comfortable area for kids to watch kid friendly tv shows. Location: Terminal 1 - Airside, near Gate 33.
- Currency Exchange - ANZ (Terminal 1 - departures and arrivals levels) and Travelex (Terminal 2 - airside) offer foreign exchange services.
- Food & Drinks - At the time of this update there were no 24 hour food or beverage concessions available at this airport.
- Information Desk - Information not available
- Luggage Storage & Lockers - Location: Terminal 1, arrivals level, opposite Travel Concierge (hours: 530am - 9pm) • Terminal 2, arrivals level, near carousel 6 (hours: 530am - 9pm)
- Mobile Charging - not available
- Observation Deck - Location: Terminal 1 - walk through Terrace Bar or use the passageway near check-in counter B to gain access to the stairs leading up to the deck.
- Prayer Room - Location: Terminal 1, level 3 (airside) • Terminal 1, near the taxi holding area (landside).
- Showers - Free showers are available, but bring your own soap and towel. Locations: Terminal 1 - Landside: Arrivals Level (behind glass lifts), near check-in counter B and check-in counter K. Airside: Gate 24, Gate 25, Gate 31, Gate 51.
- Smoking - There are designated smoking areas in the Terminal 1 Terrace Bar (landside). If you are a transit passenger, there are no designated smoking areas, so you better travel with a patch or lots of gum.
3am - 11pm (Terminal 1) • 4am - 1100pm (Terminal 2)
Getting Around: Airport Transportation
Shockingly, there is a fee to transfer terminals between the International (T1) and Domestic (T2) terminals at Sydney Airport.
- The T-Bus operates between 6am - 9pm. Journey Time: 10 minutes. Rate: $5.50 per person
- The Airport Link train operates between 5am - 12am. Journey Time: 2 minutes. Rate: $5.00 per person
Terminal Quick Tips
- overnight sleepers will be corraled into a crowded and uncomfortable area for the night. You will need evidence of a flight the next day.
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Last Updated: 17 February 2014
The information in this Airport Guide is based on information collected and/or received from the airport's and their web sites. The information above is subject to change without notice. Use it for informational purposes only to help you du ring your stay. To report errors, or to add/change any items quoted in the guide, email me.