Melbourne's has a smart card ticketing system called Myki. In order to travel on trains, trams and buses in Zones 1 and 2 including V/Line services to Melton and Sunbury, you must have a pre-paid Myki card. Tickets can not be purchased on board trains, trams or buses. Myki cards can be purchased at major railway stations with manned ticketing offices or from Seven-Eleven (7/11) stores.
Before travelling, you must purchase a Myki card and enough credit to cover your anticipated usage. If or when you run out of credit, you must then purchase more credit, which the locals refer to as topping up your Myki card.
Upon arrival at a railway station or upon boarding a tram or bus, users must touch-on by scanning the card on a reader before travel. Make sure you hear the buzzing sound as it reads your card, otherwise you will be travelling illegally and can be fined. Before you get off the tram or bus, or leave the railway station at your destination, you must touch off by scanning the card on a reader. Make sure you hear the buzzing sound as it reads your card, otherwise you will not be recorded as having completed your journey. If you fail to touch off, you will be charged a premium rate for the journey, which is automatically deducted from your credit. If you travel into another zone, Myki will also help itself to your credit. By not touching-off or by travelling in multiple zones, you can quickly end up with no credit and no way of knowing you have none until you attempt to travel and your touch-on is rejected.
When you leave Melbourne, it is recommended that you keep your Myki card if there is a possibility you might return at some time in the future. Any credit you have left can be used on your next visit. If you do dispose of your card and then return to Melbourne, you will not only have wasted whatever credit you had on your first card, you will have to buy a new card as well as more credit.
Myki is also available on Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong, Bellarine Peninsula, Seymour and Warragul town buses and Latrobe Valley intertown buses.
Myki Visitor Pack: International and interstate visitors coming to Victoria can buy a Myki Visitor Pack to travel on Melbourne's public transport network. The Myki Visitor Pack contains a Myki card with enough value for one day's travel in Zone 1 (which includes the entire tram network but does not include travel to the Puffing Billy railway at Belgrave), discounts to various Melbourne attractions, a map and instructions for use. The Myki Visitor Pack is available at Southern Cross Station (near entrance at Collins and Spencer streets), the Melbourne Visitor Centre at Federation Square and SkyBus terminals at Melbourne Airport and Southern Cross Station.
Exploring Melbourne By Tram
Melbourne has the largest network of trams in the world, which ply the congested streets of Melbourne's older suburbs. The tram network has 28 routes radiating out from the major streets of the city centre to mainly the older suburbs. The trams are somewhat of a tourist attraction, but can be quite slow, particularly through the gridlocked streets of many inner suburbs.
Metropolitan tram services normally operate between 5am and midnight, Monday to Saturday, and 7am to 11pm Sunday. Later services also depart the city on Friday and Saturday nights. Check timetables at Metlink.
Trams travel along most of Melbourne's major thoroughfares and tram stops are signposted with a map, tram route numbers and timetables. The route number is also displayed at the front of the tram. Travellers who haven't pre-purchased their tickets should remember to carry coins, as on-board ticket machines do not accept notes.
Free City Circle trams travel the perimeter of the central business district every day between 10am and 6pm, except for Christmas Day and Good Friday. Hours of operation are extended to 9pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays during daylight saving time.