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Our car hire service in Mackay, Queensland, is renowned for its superior customer care. We are on hand to assist with your travel arrangements, ensuring that your journey to the nuances of the Great Barrier Reef is seamless. Famed for its beautiful tropical climate, Mackay is to be discovered in the comfort of our modern, reliable cars. Remember, we are here to assist, guaranteeing a memorable experience in Mackay.

Car Hire in Mackay

The Unassuming Australian Town with Surprising Charms

City car near kangaroo, river and sugarcane at sunset

Welcoming more than a million tourists each year, Mackay, located in Queensland, stands tall as a stunning Australian paradise. It serves as the gateway to the Whitsunday Islands and the Great Barrier Reef, two absolute must-visit natural wonders. Breathtaking coastlines, lush rainforests, and a vibrant city lifestyle converge in Mackay, creating an irresistible allure for travellers.

One of the best ways to explore all that Mackay has to offer is by car. Conveniently, many of the region's attractions are easily accessible, making it an ideal destination for a road trip. Tour iconic Sugar Cane fields, journey to historic mining towns like Nebo or trek to the beautiful Finch Hatton Gorge. Additionally, Mackay is home to numerous pristine beaches, all perfect for lazy afternoons or adventurous water sports. For those interested in a bit of history and culture, the Art Deco architecture in Mackay's city centre is not to be missed.

Outside the city, travellers can drive north towards the diverse wildlife and tropical rainforeths of Cape Hillsborough National Park, which is just a 45-minute drive away. An even more rewarding addition to those exploring Mackay by car is a journey along the Pioneer Valley and Eungella, considered one of Australia's most unique and stunningly diverse road trips. The expansive landscapes and fresh country air are all part of the Mackay charm that leaves a lasting impact on all who visit.

Car Hire in Mackay

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much does it cost to hire a car in Mackay?

The cost to hire a car in Mackay varies based on the size and model of the vehicle, as well as the duration of hire. Prices can start from around $30 per day for a small car.

2. What car model is most in demand for hire in Mackay?

In Mackay, SUVs are quite popular given the region's outdoor recreational opportunities. Such vehicles offer ample space and comfort for travelling families or groups and are suitable for local road conditions.

3. Where are the most popular locations to hire a car in Mackay?

Car hire services are most frequently utilised at transportation hubs such as the Mackay Airport and the city centre.

4. Is 24-hour pick-up and drop-off service available?

Yes, most car hire companies in Mackay offer 24-hour pick-up and drop-off for your convenience.

5. Is there a minimum rental period?

Yes, most car hire companies in Mackay have a minimum rental period, typically 24 hours.

6. What is the required minimum age to hire a car in Mackay?

Generally, the minimum required age to hire a car in Mackay is 21. However, this can vary depending on the car hire company.

7. What documents do I need to hire or drive a car in Mackay?

To hire a car in Mackay, you'll generally need a full valid driver's licence, a credit card for the security deposit, and identification such as a passport.

8. When is the best time of the year to visit Mackay by car?

Mackay can be visited year-round, but the most popular times to travel by car are during the dryer months of May to October.

9. What are the main airports in Mackay?

The main airport serving Mackay is the Mackay Airport.

10. Can I pick up a car in Mackay and drop it off in another city?

Yes, several car hire companies in Mackay allow one-way rentals. However, it's important to note that there might be additional fees associated with this service.

Car Hire Feedback


Mackay – 22-12-2024. As someone who frequently hires cars in different parts of the country, I found the service provided here in Mackay to be top-tier. The price for the hire was competitive, and the car's condition was excellent. It was a smooth experience from the initial enquiry to returning the keys.


Mackay – 17-07-2024. Working in a business that requires regular travel, I have come to appreciate car hire services that value reliability and transparency. Mackay's local firm didn't disappoint me. The car was handed over in prime condition, and despite a busy schedule, they accommodated my needs. The cost was reasonable too, making it a satisfactory transaction overall.


Mackay – 03-05-2024. Mackay's scenic beauty requires a reliable way to explore and this car hire service proved ideal. The process was streamlined, the vehicle's performance was excellent and there were no hidden costs. I appreciated their professionalism and service.


Mackay – 12-01-2024. Hiring a car for my vacation in Mackay was made simpler by this local outfit. The pricing was transparent, and the fleet was sufficient to provide a suitable car for my needs. It was a pleasure doing business with a firm that values customer satisfaction.


Mackay – 03-10-2023. I rarely offer reviews but I owe it to this car hire company. They are competitively priced, and their cars are in excellent condition. The entire process was smooth. Mackay's company certainly offers a high standard of service.


Mackay – 03-01-2023. My recent car hire experience in Mackay was stress-free thanks to this company. The affordability, combined with a quality vehicle, set them apart. Congratulations to the team on a job well done.

Mackay Road Connections

Essential travel details for trips by car from Mackay

  1. Mackay to Brisbane: Covering the distance of approximately 970km, the predominant route is along the Bruce Highway (A1). The travel time is around 11 hours and 30 minutes, with well-maintained roads.
  2. Mackay to Townsville: This route spans roughly 390km, generally utilizing the Bruce Highway (A1). The journey typically takes 5 hours. The roads are in good condition.
  3. Mackay to Rockhampton: The 335km drive is mainly via A1 and usually takes about 3 hours and 40 minutes, passing through beautiful landscapes.
  4. Mackay to Bundaberg: About 650km in distance, primarily on Bruce Highway (A1), taking about 7 hours and 40 minutes to complete. The roads are in excellent condition.
  5. Mackay to Cairns: On Bruce Highway (A1), this long 735km route takes approximately 8 hours and 50 minutes on well-maintained roads, offering scenic coastal views.
  6. Mackay to Gold Coast: A longer trip of about 1100km, largely on Bruce Highway (A1), perhaps taking 13 hours. Road conditions are typically good.
  7. Mackay to Airlie Beach: This is a short route of 150km taking around 1 hour and 45 minutes, mainly on Bruce Highway (A1) and Shute Harbour Road. The roads are generally good and the journey is quite picturesque.

Driving in Mackay

Common Questions and Answers

1. What is the general speed limit in Mackay and its surrounding areas?

The general speed limit in urban residential areas is typically 50 km/hr. However, on most highways, the speed limit increases to 100-110 km/h. It's important to always keep an eye out for speed limit signs as they may vary depending on the road conditions and areas.

2. Do I need an international driving license in Mackay?

As a visitor, you are allowed to drive in Mackay with a valid overseas driver's license. However, if your license is not in English, you will need to carry an international driving permit or an official translation of your license.

3. Are there many speed cameras in Mackay?

Yes, speed cameras are quite common not just in Mackay but throughout the country. Speed cameras are typically located in high-risk areas to ensure road safety. Also, mobile speed cameras can be placed anywhere at any time.

4. Are there toll roads in Mackay?

No, there are no toll roads in Mackay or its immediate surroundings. Toll roads are more common in larger cities such as Brisbane or Sydney.

5. What are some crucial road rules I should be aware of when driving in Mackay?

Drive on the left side of the road, the maximum alcohol limit is 0.05 percent BAC, always stop for pedestrians at marked crosswalks, you must not overtake a bus displaying a 'Do Not Overtake Turning Vehicle' sign, and always indicate before turning or changing lanes.

6. What's the level of traffic like in Mackay?

In comparison to larger cities, traffic is generally low in Mackay. However, during peak times such as in morning and evening commuting hours, there can be a significant increase in traffic.

7. How recognizable are road signs in Mackay?

Road signs in Mackay, and Australia in general, follow international conventions and are easily recognizable. It is recommended for overseas drivers to familiarize themselves with Australian road signs prior to driving.

8. Are there any unique road rules in Mackay that I should be aware of?

Not specific to Mackay, but uniquely in Queensland, drivers must give way to restive horses. If a horse rider or horse-drawn vehicle is on the road and displaying a red flag, you must steer the car wide of the horse, slow down or stop.

9. Do I need to carry my driving license while driving?

Yes, it is mandatory to carry your driving license or permit while driving. Failure to provide it on request can result in fines.

10. Are roundabouts common in driving in Mackay?

Roundabouts are common in Australian towns, including Mackay. Generally, the vehicle already on a roundabout has the right of way. Always indicate when exiting a roundabout.

11. How are parking regulations in Mackay?

Street parking in Mackay typically requires you to park in the direction of the traffic. Always look for signage to confirm whether parking is allowed and if fees apply.

12. What do I need to know about countryside driving?

When driving in rural areas of Australia, be aware of wildlife especially at dawn and dusk. Also, watch out for 'road trains' (large trucks with multiple trailers) on highways and ensure you give them plenty of space when overtaking.

13. Are school zones enforced in Mackay?

Yes, school zones are strictly enforced across the city. The speed limit in school zones is 40 km/h on school days between specified hours.

14. Can I turn left on a red signal in Mackay?

Unless a sign permits it, you cannot turn left on a red traffic signal.

15. Are U-turns legal in Mackay?

In Mackay, like the rest of Queensland, U-turns are generally allowed unless a 'No U-Turn Sign' is displayed. However, U-turns are not permitted at traffic lights unless a sign indicates otherwise.

Mackay’s Top Attractions

The most visited tourist spots around Mackay

  1. Eungella National Park: Australia's longest stretch of subtropical rainforest with magnificent views and unique wildlife.
  2. Bluewater Lagoon: A free swimming and leisure facility overlooking Mackay's picturesque Pioneer River.
  3. Bluewater Trail: A scenic walking and cycling trail that explores several key attractions of the city.
  4. Mackay Botanic Gardens: A mix of unique flora, fun play equipment and excellent facilities enveloped by stunning scenery.
  5. Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens: Features over 1000 species of native Australian plants, spread across five different garden areas.
  6. Airlie Beach: Located 2 hours drive from Mackay, it is an aquatic playground offering beautiful beaches and great dining options.
  7. Sarina Sugar Shed: Offers a unique experience of Australia's sugar cane industry with tours, tastings and insights.
  8. Cape Hillsborough National Park: Beautiful park known for its dense rainforest, diverse wildlife and sunrise wallaby beach meetups.

Must-Drive Roadtrips from Mackay

Experience Australia at its finest behind the wheel

  1. Mackay to Cape Hillsborough: A short 51 km journey offering pristine beaches and kangaroo-filled national parks for an intimate brush with Australian wildlife.
  2. Mackay to Eungella: Drive 80 km west to Eungella, home to the stunning Eungella National Park, where you can explore the rainforest or spot a platypus.
  3. Mackay to Airlie Beach: Travelling 150 km to Airlie Beach, the gateway to the Whitsundays, will allow you to snorkel or sail the Great Barrier Reef.
  4. Mackay to Rockhampton: A 335 km journey south along the scenic Bruce Highway will bring you to Rockhampton, Australia’s beef capital, which boasts charming historical architecture and a zoo.
  5. Mackay to Daintree National Park: Covering a distance of 675 km north leads to Daintree National Park, featuring the oldest rainforest on earth and unique wildlife.
  6. Mackay to Townsville: A 390 km trip to Townsville offers a great mix of rainforest, outback and reef, including Magnetic Island & Riverway lagoons.
  7. Mackay to Fraser Island: Cruising 705 km south rewards you with Fraser Island, the world's largest sand island, abounding with fresh water lakes and dingo sightings.