Understanding your transport options is an important concept when you arrive in a new place. Whether it is getting to university or exploring the city’s neighbourhoods, read on to discover Adelaide’s transport system.


Train v Tram

Adelaide has six train lines; heading from the Adelaide railway station to Belair, Gawler, Tonsley, Grange, Seaford and Outer Harbor.

The tram line runs from the Adelaide Entertainment Centre (AEC) to Glenelg. The tram is free from the AEC to South Terrace and also between Brighton Rd & Moseley Square, Glenelg. Taking a trip down to Glenelg on the tram is a must-do while staying in Adelaide.


To travel to many of Adelaide’s metropolitan areas, buses are the best option. Buses come about every 15 minutes on routes close to the city and either every 1/2 hour or hour in the outer suburbs.  Your MetroCard can be used on the bus, or you can purchase a ticket from the bus driver. Extensions after bus numbers (like F, X or T) indicate express buses that may not stop at all of the stops, ask the driver if you are unsure. There is a free City Connector bus service around the city and North Adelaide.

What is the O-Bahn?

The O-Bahn is a unique transport option for students residing in Adelaide’s north-eastern suburbs. A German design, the bus runs both on a specially-built track (where it hits top speeds of 100 km/h) and on normal roads.


When you board public transport all, you have to do is touch your MetroCard against the yellow validator inside the door. At Adelaide Railway Station you will have to touch your card to enter and exit. Your fare will be automatically deducted from the value of your MetroCard.

Types of ticket

There are two time periods of operation for public transport: Peak travel times are before 9.01am, after 3.00pm Monday to Friday and all day on Saturday.

Interpeak travel times are 9.01am to 3.00pm Monday to Friday, all day Sunday and South Australian public holidays.

Where to buy

MetroCards can be purchased and recharged at Adelaide Metro InfoCentres as well as a range of agents, including supermarkets, newsagents and convenience stores.

Recharging online is perhaps the easiest option, and you can also use that system to set up auto-recharge.


The Adelaide Metro website is a great resource for train, bus and tram timetables. But, if you want real-time public transport information and updates on when your bus is due to arrive, make sure to download the metroMATE app.