Sydney Airport station access fee capped at $21/week on Opal cards

By David Flynn, August 19 2014
Sydney Airport station access fee capped at $21/week on Opal cards

Here's some good news for frequent flyers who are also frequent train travellers to and from Sydney Airport.

The 'station access fee' charged at Sydney Airport's international and Domestic train stations will be capped at $21 per week for users of the Opal pubic transport card as of September 1st.

That fee – levied by Airport Link, the private operator of the airport stations – currently stands at $12.60 each time you enter or exit either of the airport stations., on top of the cost of the train fare itself.

Under the new arrangement, the station access fee will be capped at $21 for all use of the airport stations within a single week, so it's a win for anybody who travels to or from the airport more than once a week.

The move will also be a boon to workers at the airport itself, of course.

"This means the  maximum you'll ever pay per week with Opal is $81 – the $60 weekly cap (equivalent to a $63 weekly MyMulti3) plus the $21 station access fee" says Beau Giles, who runs the independent Twitter account TheOpalCardUser.

However, Giles points out that as Opal's week is defined as running from Monday to Sunday, "it doesn't help if you leave Friday night and return Monday morning."

The arrangement comes as the result of a one-off payment of $10 million by the NSW state government to AirLink.

“This is an important issue for frequent travellers as well as the 28,000 people who work at the airport across 800 businesses and organisations" a Sydney Airport spokesperson told Australian Business Traveller.

"We’re delighted that the NSW Government has reached an agreement with AirportLink to cap the station access fee for Opal card holders when paper tickets are phased out.”

Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT


David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

10 Nov 2011

Total posts 131

A 7 day gate-pass (the amount you pay on top of your regular ticket) has always been $21. It never made sense becuase it was cheaper than the cost of a return gate pass!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

01 Oct 2013

Total posts 93

rob01 - Have you been able to use it for multiple entries (more than 2 entries/exits) within those 7 days? I've had nothing but trouble with GatePasses beyond a return ticket - including one machine capturing it!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

17 Aug 2012

Total posts 2204

I have. More than once, the magnetic GatePass Weekly has been used by myself multiple times within a week.

I had no issues whatsoever with the ticket being rejected, but it's worth noting that you cannot use the GatePass Weekly without an existing periodical ticket (e.g. weekly multimodal ticket, fortnightly train ticket, etc.), and you must not put the GatePass into the barriers of any non-Airport station. At all stations besides International and Domestic, use your existing normal non-Airport ticket to exit.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

10 Nov 2011

Total posts 131

Hi P.B. Yes I used it all the time as it always worked out cheaper. As watson says below, you just have to have a regular train ticket, so if you have a weekly ticket anyway it's a perfect option. Always used to make me laugh, and the guys selling the tickts would always just shrug their shoulders and roll their eyes when I asked why a weekly was cheaper than a return!

Hi Guest, join in the discussion on Sydney Airport station access fee capped at $21/week on Opal cards