The Australian Dollar (AU$) is unusually strong at the moment, trading around US$1, and has done so for over a year. Most outlets do not accept foreign currency, so it’s best you come prepared with a small amount of cash. There are money exchange offices throughout the CBD and all banks have exchange facilities and accept most currencies. You can check the currency exchange (trading) rate on www.xe.com (Download Smartphone App) or an approximate currency exchange rate at www.oanda.com.
Standard credit cards (VISA, MasterCard, Amex, Diners) are widely accepted across Sydney. However, please be aware that retailers often impose surcharges on Amex and Diners card purchases.
Travelling from the Airport to The University of New South Wales (UNSW)
Unfortunately, the conference is unable to provide transfers from the airport to the conference venue. For conference participants staying at New College, whether you get into a taxi or use public transport, please tell the drivers you wish to get to:
- New College, University of New South Wales, at the corner of Anzac Parade and Barker Street, Kingsford.
There are two more economical options (train to Green Square station, then a bus), however, they take close to an hour’s travel time and the first option does not present a significant saving.
Train and Bus
Train from International Airport to Green Square station:
One-way cost AUD $15.40
Bus from Green Square Station to the UNSW: Bus 370
Typically, buses are prepaid only and commuters are required to buy a 10-trip bus ticket (MyBus1 that costs approximately AUD$20 for ten trips).
Bus 400 from the International Terminal to Kensington (you will need a prepaid bus ticket for this trip. Please check with airport ground staff regarding where to purchase this ticket and confirm with the bus driver that you’re on the right bus that will take you to UNSW. (http://www.131500.com.au/plan-your-trip/trip-planner/@@map?trip=4&leg=2&tps=ULTJP24_20669042)
During July temperatures usually hover around 18 degrees Celsius and can drop to 9 degrees. It does not snow but it rains a lot, so bring an umbrella.
Sydney’s time zone (Australian Eastern Standard Time) is Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) +11.
Australia’s international dialing code is: +61
Sydney’s area code is: 2
To dial an international number, prefix the desired number with: 0011
For Fire, Police, and Ambulance, dial: 000
Mobile and Internet
Due to Australia’s large land mass and small population, telecommunications is expensive.
Mobile: you can buy a $2 per day phone card from the two of the main three mobile providers- Optus and Vodafone.
International call cards, available from most news agents and shopping centres (Coles and Woolworths), reroute your international call through a 3rd party company that has excellent rates.
Internet: There are many “internet café’s” in the CBD. McDonalds, Starbucks, and Apple Store (Sydney CBD - 367 George St, cnr King St) have free wireless (wifi) zones, as do other locations but few and far between.
UNSW is a free-wifi zone, so you will be able to check your emails if you bring your own laptop.
Computers and Printing Services
The computers at the UNSW Library only allow for staff and student access. Hence participants are encouraged, if possible, to bring their laptops.
The conference does not provide a printing service. However, the UNSW Library has printers and photocopiers that may be used by members of the public. A printing card ($2) will need to be purchased.
Australia (almost exclusively) uses the AS/NZS 3112 plug (type I) which provides a nominal voltage of 230 volts at a maximum of 10 amps
Australia Post has an outlet on the UNSW Kensington Campus (map reference F21) and every suburb has a post office too. The General Post Office is located at #1 Martin Place, in the Sydney CBD.
Things to do in Sydney
Art Gallery NSW
Special exhibition - Australian Symbolism
www.bos18.com - Biennale of Sydney
Time Out Sydney