Money and Budgeting


Australia’s currency is the Australian dollar ($), comprising 100 cents. There are 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, $1 and $2 coins, and $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 notes. Prices in shops are often marked in single cents then rounded to the nearest 5c when you come to pay.  You can check the current exchange rate here.


Tipping is not widely expected in Australia. Some upmarket restaurants may expect a small tip if the service warrants it (5-10%). Taxi drivers will appreciate if you round up the fare. Tipping in hotels is not expected.

So how expensive is Australia?

Budget: Less than $150 per day

  • Hostel dorm bed: $28–40
  • Double room in a basic motel: $80–130
  • Simple main meal: $10–15
  • Short bus or tram ride: $4

Mid-range: $150−300 per day

  • Double room in a motel, B&B or hotel: $130–250
  • Brunch in a good cafe: $25–40
  • Door charge at gig: $10–20
  • Short taxi ride: $25

Top End: More than $300 per day

  • Double room in a top-end hotel: from $250
  • Three-course meal in an upmarket restaurant: $100 per person
  • Theatre tickets: from $50 per person
  • Domestic flight between two main cities: from $100