Flights to Cairns

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Cairns (CNS)
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When is the best time to fly to Cairns?

Choose a month below to see average flight prices and weather conditions

Cairns is a breathtaking city located right on the water. It boasts a tropical climate, which means temperatures are favourable year-round. The area has two distinct seasons: winter and summer. The winter months, which are April – September have cooler temperatures, minimal rainfall, and clear skies. Late August is the ideal time to visit because then you skip the holiday tourist season. Average temperatures at this time are 17.4 – 26.5 degrees Celsius.

What is the cheapest month to fly to Cairns?

The cheapest month to fly to Cairns from Australia is in March. Flight prices, which tend to average around $232, are often lower during this time because this is during the off-season. If you are unable to visit Cairns during the month of March, then departing from Australia during the month May is also very affordable. Most momondo users find prices during this month for around $244.

How far in advance should I book a flight to Cairns?

We recommend purchasing flights from Australia to Cairns 60 days ahead of your departure date because this is when momondo users tend to see the best flight rates. On average, our users have found flights to Cairns for $308. Keep in mind that you might also find cheap flights to Cairns outside of this time window. In fact, momondo users recently found flights from Australia to Cairns for $138.

What is the cheapest day to depart on your flight to Cairns?

According to our data, Wednesday is the cheapest day to fly to Cairns from Australia. The lowest ticket price found for a Wednesday departure recently was $294. Keep in mind that prices can always vary depending on your route and whether or not you are flying domestic or international. If your travel schedule is flexible, try to avoid departing on a Friday because tickets tend to average around $327. These prices are subject to change though, so be sure to set up a Price Alert for flights to Cairns.

What is the cheapest time of day to depart on your flight to Cairns?

In the morning is the cheapest time of day to fly from Australia to Cairns when you can find flight prices for as low as $303. Flying to Cairns in the morning is an ideal time because this is during off-peak travel hours. If you have a flexible travel schedule, then try to avoid flying in the evening when prices are $369 on average. Flights to Cairns from Australia in the evening are generally more expensive because this time of day is more convenient for travellers’ schedules.

Is there a good place to hike near Cairns?

During the warmer months, hikers around the Cairns area find that parks like South Bank Parklands are the best for taking long walks with their families and/or pets. Those looking for this type of experience are likely best suited to fly to Cairns in June or July.

Is there an alternative airport near Cairns?

Those flying to Cairns could potentially find better pricing at Bloomfield Airport (126 km from Cairns city centre), depending on the month and departure airport.


Cairns flight deals found on momondo

Check out some of the best fares from airports in Australia to Cairns found recently by users on momondo
Jetstar
10 Aug.
BNE02:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS04:50Cairns
21 Aug.
CNS12:00Cairns
2h 05m
BNE14:05Brisbane
Jetstar
2 Sep.
BNE17:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS19:50Cairns
5 Sep.
CNS02:00Cairns
2h 05m
BNE04:05Brisbane
Jetstar
2 Sep.
BNE02:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS04:50Cairns
8 Sep.
CNS05:20Cairns
2h 05m
BNE07:25Brisbane
Jetstar
10 Aug.
BNE17:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS19:50Cairns
19 Aug.
CNS10:35Cairns
2h 05m
BNE12:40Brisbane
Jetstar
8 Aug.
BNE17:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS19:50Cairns
11 Aug.
CNS02:00Cairns
2h 05m
BNE04:05Brisbane
Jetstar
8 Aug.
BNE17:30Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS19:50Cairns
10 Aug.
CNS02:00Cairns
2h 05m
BNE04:05Brisbane

Find the cheapest one-way flights to Cairns

If you're looking for one-way flights to Cairns, view some of our deals below provided by Jetstar
Jetstar
17 Jul.
BNE17:45Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS20:05Cairns
Jetstar
14 Jun.
BNE17:45Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS20:05Cairns
Jetstar
15 Jul.
BNE10:45Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS13:05Cairns

Which airlines fly to Cairns?

Here you can see a selection of the most popular and cheapest airlines for flights to Cairns

Direct domestic flights include Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar, Tigerair Australia, Regional Express, Skytrans Airlines, and Hinterland Aviation.


How to get from the airport to Cairns city centre?

Below you will find all the airports in Cairns along with the distance from the city centre

Cairns Airport (CNS)

Taxi

Each terminal has a sheltered taxi rank available. A $4 AUD fee is automatically added for rides departing from Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. The approximate fare to city centre is $25 AUD.

Shuttle Bus

The Sun Palm Transport Group offers a direct shuttle bus to and from the airport. The shuttle must be pre-booked. The fare to city centre is approximately $15 AUD for adults and $7.50 AUD for children.

Bus

Translink offers a bus service from the airport to city centre. The bus departs every 30 minutes and minimum fare is approximately $4 AUD.

Ride Sharing

Uber operates in Cairns, and there are dedicated airport pickups in Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 of the airport. You must pre-book their service using the smartphone app. The fare depends on the time of day, number of passengers, and type of vehicle requested.

Private Car Hire

Limousines may be booked ahead of time for a direct ride to and from the airport. Prices vary depending on the type of vehicle requested and the time of service. Popular private car hires include: Let’s Take the Rolls, Murrays Coach Bus & Limousine Hire, CoolRides, Cairns Limousine Service, and Hughes Limousines.

Car Rentals

You can save money and explore Cairns with your car hire picked up at the airport. Book your rental car with momondo.


Popular routes to Cairns

Most frequently searched flights to Cairns along with the cheapest price and shortest flight duration
Brisbane to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 15m
Cheapest price
$138
Coolangatta to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 25m
Cheapest price
$179
Sydney to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 00m
Cheapest price
$198
Melbourne to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 15m
Cheapest price
$221
Newcastle to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 45m
Cheapest price
$239
Darwin to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 25m
Cheapest price
$277
Townsville to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
0h 55m
Cheapest price
$280
Melbourne to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
6h 35m
Cheapest price
$309
Maroochydore to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 20m
Cheapest price
$353
Adelaide to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 00m
Cheapest price
$376
Hobart to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
5h 35m
Cheapest price
$478
Wellington to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
13h 00m
Cheapest price
$489
Canberra to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 15m
Cheapest price
$527
Perth to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
4h 15m
Cheapest price
$540
Tamworth to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
11h 20m
Cheapest price
$549
Ballina to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
17h 55m
Cheapest price
$620
Auckland to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
5h 30m
Cheapest price
$631
Alice Springs to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
20h 15m
Cheapest price
$830
Broome to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
15h 10m
Cheapest price
$1,224
Port Hedland to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
17h 05m
Cheapest price
$1,345
View more

How to get around in Cairns?

Walking

Cairns has a flat landscape and is a tightly put together city, so a vast majority of the attractions are accessed by walking around, including the CBD area. If you want to venture up to the tablelands and rainforest, however, you will need other means of transportation.

Bus

The Sunbus operates throughout Cairns and runs daily. It is the most affordable way to get around the area, and there are around 18 routes. The daily fare starts at $4.40 AUD for travel within zone 1 and can go up to $13.40 AUD for travel to zone 9 locations.

Taxis

Taxis are the most expensive means of transportation in Cairns, but to shorten travel times, they might be worth the cost. You can typically hail one from the curb, but you can also locate a taxi rank or contact the company for a booking. The booking fee is $1.50 AUD, and the flag fare starts at $2.90 AUD. The price after that is $2.26 AUD per kilometre and $0.82 AUD per minute wait time.

Ride Share

To get from one end of Cairns to the other, or to venture up to the rainforest, you can book a ride-share through Uber using their smartphone app. The fare depends on how far you are driving and the vehicle selected.

Boat

Boats are useful when you want to venture across the harbour, take a tour of the local reefs, or just travel along the waterfront. River cruises take anywhere from 1 – 14 hours depending on how far out you go. The cost depends on which tour you book, the company, type of boat, and party size.


What are the visa and passport requirements when flying to Cairns?

No visa is required for domestic travellers within Australia. For foreign nationals, please check the Australian Government Immigration website.


Additional info and tips about visiting Cairns

Things to Do and Places of Interest in Cairns

Most people come to Cairns for the Great Barrier Reef, but there is plenty more to do after you have snorkeled your way through the reef. The cafe culture is amazing in Cairns, and you will find gourmet coffee shops on almost every corner of the CBD. There are also local eateries featuring Aussie wines, fusion cuisine, and popular foods. In the Cairns Highlands, you will find Tarzali Lakes platypus park. Cairns has several museums and tourist sites dedicated to the Aboriginal culture, including the Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. It will be worth your time to book a rainforest trip and hike through the forests that are over 135 million years old.

Tips and Tricks for Visiting Cairns

Try a Hostel

If you are the adventurous type and do not need a luxury hotel, then book a hostel in the CBD. Hostels are the most cost-effective type of lodging, and you can find a room for as little as $17 AUD or a private accommodation for $55 – $90 AUD.

Purchase Day Tickets

The bus is by far the cheapest means of transportation in Cairns, but it can be costly if you pay per zone. Consider purchasing a day pass to save on transportation costs.

Drink Goon

Enjoy a boxed wine, which is much cheaper than purchasing bottled Australian wines in Cairns.

Be Aware of Stinger Season

During the rainy season, Cairns experiences the infamous Stinger Season, which is when the jellyfish make their way into the waters around Cairns. During this time, the Box Jellyfish may be in the water. Their sting can be fatal; therefore, only swim around the stinger nets during this season and follow all safety precautions posted along the beach.


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