View all of our Destinations and Programmes

Buying Car in Australia | Travel tips

View all of our
Adventure Programmes




There are many places you can look if you would like to buy a car in Australia, including online, hostel boards, car markets and specialists such as Travellers Autobarn. These are our tips:


  • ONLINE: Gumtree is always a good place to look for vehicles while living in Australia, as is Cars 4 Backpackers ! Both websites feature plenty of information and options for vehicles. Cars 4 Backpackers is dedicated entirely to backpackers and is an excellent source.
  • HOSTEL BOARDS: Just look at hostel boards or even university boards – you will find plenty of vehicles around while on your working holiday visa.
  • CAR MARKET: Australia offers a dedicated car market for backpackers – the Sydney Travellers Car Market. The car market is a program by the Sydney Council specifically for backpackers, and is popular with many of those on a Working Holiday Visa, Australia. You can visit the car market in Kings Cross and choose among a large range of private backpacker vehicles.
  • TRAVELLERS AUTOBARN: Travellers Autobarn has been selling vehicles to backpackers since 1993 and is famous for its buyback guarantee, available in any of its bCanada/Canada/ranch-canada-canadaes across Australia. It offers warranties such as a two week total warranty, 5000 km Australia-wide engine and gearbox warranty and more. It also hosts free live webinars about car sales



The obvious factors to consider are of course age and kilometres, so we won’t go into too much detail here. Those on a Working Holiday Visa, Australia should be aware that Australian vehicles are used to much higher kilometres than European vehicles, so don’t be too easily deterred. Below are what we regard as the most important points to consider:


  • LENGTH OF REGISTRATION: Always consider for how long you would like to travel while on your Working Holiday Visa. Also don't forget to budget for the renewal of your registration, and consider the selling process - the greater your outstanding registration period when you come to sell your vehicle, the more attractive it is.
  • STATE OF REGISTRATION: Australia can be quite challenging when it comes to vehicle registrations. Each state has different laws and it is often not a straightforward process - if your vehicle is currently registered in NSW, we advise you to renew your registration again in NSW; same applies to the other states. If you are after specific information for each state, we recommend that you contact any of public services such as the RTA
  • Both the state and length of registration will be highlighted on the seller's paperwork and on the windscreen sticker (many states no longer issue windscreen stickers - you can check the expiry date online).
  • ROADWORTHY CERTIFICATE/PRE-PURCHASE INSPECTIONS: When you are looking for a vehicle, it is always good to ask for a roadworthy certificate – this will highlight the condition of the vehicle. BUT BE AWARE – this is only a snapshot of the vehicle at the time and is no guarantee that your vehicle won’t break down. We strongly advise you to take the vehicle for a pre-purchase inspection – in Sydney, we recommend the Kings Cross Garage.
  • ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE: We highly recommend that you take out roadside assistance. It won’t cost you more than $200 - check out NRMA
  • OUTSTANDING FINES: It is strongly advised that you do a full police check on a potential vehicle. 




Whenever a vehicle is registered, it comes automatically with the compulsory third party personal insurance – also called CTP. CTP covers the driver for liability with regards to claimants' health and medical costs. It may not cover the driver, so we recommend travel insurance when you buy a car in Australia.


We definitely recommend that you take out third party property insurance when you buy a car in Australia, as this will cover you against liability for any damage that you might have caused with your vehicle - typically, to another car. We recommend that you use Travellers Car Insurance , a dedicated backpacker car insurance product. It costs around $400/year and allows you a hassle- free holiday!

BE CAREFUL – lots of banks in Australia are happy to sell you their insurance product, even if it is not legal for backpackers! For coverage, you must be living in Australia on a permanent basis.

Disclaimer: Some articles on Freepackers such as this one are submitted by third parties. While we do check the articles and require the person submitting it to declare that they own the copyrights, it may happen from time to time that an inappropriate article is posted. If you own the copyrights to this article or the images used in it please let us know via so we can review and take appropriate action. Freepackers cannot be held responsible or liable for third party articles and any and all issues should be taken up directly with the person that submitted the article.