Newcastle Transport

Find out more about Newcastle 500 service changes

Light Rail

Light Rail

Light Rail

Newcastle Light Rail runs from Newcastle Interchange in Wickham to Newcastle Beach in the east end of Newcastle.

With six convenient stops, Newcastle Light Rail is the new way to explore Newcastle's city centre.

The turn-up-and-go service operates from 5am to 1am, seven days a week.

Using light rail is easy when you follow these travel tips:

Tap on with your opal card

Catching light rail is easy with an Opal card. Simply tap on at the platform.

The fare is $2.20 with an Adult Opal card and $1.10 with a Child/Youth, Concession or Gold Senior/Pensioner Opal card.

With the Opal Transfer Discount, transferring to Light Rail within 60 minutes of tapping off the train, bus or ferry will cost just 20 cents for adults or 10 cents for children, concession card holders and seniors or pensioners.

Children aged three years and under travel free on public transport.

You can make multiple trips on light rail under the same fare as long as you tap on within 60 minutes of tapping off from your last trip.

If you don’t have an Opal card, you can tap on at one of the Opal readers with an American Express, Mastercard or Visa credit or debit card or a linked device. Standard Adult Opal fare pricing applies.

You can also buy single trip tickets from ticket machines on the platform. However, single trip tickets cost more than an Opal card fare and don’t provide any Opal benefits.

For more information, visit newcastletransport.info/tickets-and-opal

 

Get on board and hold on

Enter the light rail stop safely and wait on the platform behind the safety line until your service arrives. When the light rail vehicle has come to a stop, board by pressing the door open button when it turns green. Always allow other passengers to exit the vehicle before you board.

Once on board, make sure you stand clear of the doors and take a seat or, if standing, hold onto a hand strap or handrail. There are luggage racks for larger items and surfboard racks to secure your board on the way to the beach.

There are 60 seats on each vehicle, including 16 priority seats which should be made available for less mobile passengers. There is standing room for 216 people, with hand straps and handrails available for passenger safety.

 

Enjoy your trip

Follow the instructions of staff, signs and onboard announcements and remember to be respectful of other passengers.

Vehicles have a speed limit of 40km/h. Please make sure you hold on and store your belongings safely as vehicles may brake suddenly.

Leave the vehicle

Pay attention to the passenger information display or the onboard announcements so you don’t miss your stop.

Be prepared to leave the vehicle as it pulls into your stop. When the light rail vehicle has come to a stop, exit by pressing the door open button when it turns green.

Remember to tap off at the Opal reader using your Opal card, American Express, Mastercard or Visa credit or debit card or linked device on the platform.

Leave the platform

Please cross the road at the designated pedestrian crossing at each stop.

Light rail vehicles are very quiet and can approach from either direction, so it’s important you pay attention when around the tracks and look both ways when crossing.

Safety around light rail

With light rail services up and running, we want all Newcastle drivers, cyclists and pedestrians to be safe around trams.

There are signs, traffic lights and road markings across the city centre, which show how drivers, cyclists and pedestrians should behave around light rail vehicles and tracks.

A 40km/h speed limit is in place for all vehicles, including light rail, on Hunter and Scott streets between Worth Place and Telford Street. Sticking to the rules and being aware of your surroundings will help you stay safe.

For most of Hunter and Scott streets, light rail runs in its own dedicated lane known as a tramway. Drivers (except drivers of light rail vehicles, light rail recovery vehicles and public buses) are not allowed to drive on a tramway unless avoiding an obstruction.

There is also a mixed running section on Scott Street, between Newcomen and Pacific streets. In this section, light rail vehicles and other road users share a lane. Road users are generally required to treat light rail as any other large vehicle in this section.

Follow the safety tips below to make sure you’re safe around light rail.

Safety for pedestrians

  • Light rail vehicles move quietly. Avoid distractions like mobile devices and earphones so you can pay attention and stay alert
  • Only cross at pedestrian crossings and always look both ways. Light rail vehicles can approach from either direction and at any time
  • Access light rail stops via the designated entry. Never short cut over the tracks
  • Remember light rail drivers have blind spots. Never assume the driver has seen you
  • Pram and wheelchair wheels can catch in the tracks. Slow down before crossing and try to cross at a right angle
  • Use caution in wet weather as tracks and road markings may be slippery
  • Never run for a tram. Another one will be along shortly

Safety for drivers

  • Obey all traffic lights and road signs
  • Remember light rail vehicles take longer to stop than cars and can't swerve to avoid a collision
  • Don't drive on a tramway unless avoiding an obstruction such as a broken down vehicle. Using the tramway to pass slow moving vehicles or cyclists is not permitted
  • Always give cyclists a metre when passing. If this isn't possible, stay behind until safe to pass
  • Never park or stop in a tramway or on the tracks
  • Treat light rail vehicles like any other large vehicle under the road rules
  • Light rail vehicles are wide so please leave plenty of room 
  • Never queue across intersections - if in doubt, don't go out

Safety for cyclists

  • Take care near tracks, wheels can catch in the tracks or can slip and cause a fall. Slow down before crossing the tracks at intersections and try to cross at a right angle
  • Use caution in wet weather as tracks and road markings may be slippery
  • Remember light rail drivers have blind spots. Never assume the driver has seen you
  • Don't ride on a tramway unless avoiding an obstacle such as a broken down vehicle
  • Take the lane - ride in the centre of the lane to ensure approaching drivers can see you
  • Always keep a safe distance from light rail vehicles
  • When crossing the road, always use designated pedestrian crossings and dismount
  • Consider using the existing off-road cycleway along Newcastle foreshore

Knowing the rules

New signs, traffic lights, and road markings are in place along Hunter and Scott streets.

When driving, walking and riding around light rail, it is important to obey all traffic and pedestrian signals and signage, and to always be aware of your surroundings. 

Some key signs and road markings to look out for are:

40km/h sign

  • The speed limit for vehicles on Hunter and Scott streets will be 40km/h. Light rail vehicles will also be limited to 40km/h

Traffic sign Speed 40

Tramway

  • A tramway is marked by tram only signs and two continuous yellow lines or a structure on the left hand side of the tracks
  • In Newcastle, the section between Stewart Avenue (east) and Newcomen Street is a dedicated tramway
  • Tramways may only be used by light rail vehicles, light rail recovery vehicles, emergency services and public buses
  • Other vehicles must not use a tramway, unless avoiding an obstruction

Traffic sign Tramway

Mixed running

  • In Newcastle, the section between Newcomen and Pacific streets is designated for mixed running. In this section, drivers are generally required to treat a light rail vehicle as any other vehicle under the road rules. However, there are some specific rules to follow when driving around light rail vehicles in this section
  • A driver must not overtake to the right of a light rail vehicle unless permitted to do so by a traffic sign or road marking
  • A driver must not overtake to the left of the light rail vehicle unless the driver is turning left, and there is no danger of a collision with the light rail vehicle

Traffic sign Mixed Running

Tram Only road marking

  • 'Tram Only' road markings will be in place at intersections along the Newcastle Light Rail route. These road markings support tramway signage and serve as a reminder to drivers to stay off light rail tracks

Warning sign (road users)

  • These signs will be a common sight around the light rail route, generally at cross streets, to alert road users that light rail is running in the area

Traffic sign Warning for Cars

Warning sign (pedestrians)

  • These signs will be a common sight at signalised pedestrian crossings, to alert pedestrians that light rail is running in the area

Traffic sign Warning for Pedestrians

Rules that apply for tramways and mixed running

  • Drivers must not stop at a tram stop or on the road within 20 metres of a tram stop unless a parking sign permits stopping
  • Drivers must not stop in a tramway or on tram tracks

 

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