Flights to Cairns

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Cairns (CNS)
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Cheapest flights to Cairns airports

Find the cheapest flights to these Cairns airports from your nearest city or airport
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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 $281, are often lower during this time because this is during the off-season. If you aren’t able to travel during the month of March, then book flights to Cairns from Australia during May instead. Flights to Cairns in May, while not as cheap as those in March, still average around $298.

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

We recommend purchasing flights from Australia to Cairns 43 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 $343. Don’t hesitate to check prices now though, because momondo users recently found tickets for as low as $170.

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

On average, the least expensive day to fly to Cairns from Australia is on a Wednesday. momondo users have found tickets for Wednesday departures for as low as $315. However, this price may fluctuate depending on the airline, the season, and holidays. When flying out on a Friday, the most expensive travel day of the week, you can expect to see flight prices from Australia to Cairns for around $351.

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 $320. Flying to Cairns in the morning is an ideal time because this is during off-peak travel hours. Flights to Cairns are more costly in the evening, with an average ticket price of $396. Departure times in the evening fall within the peak daily travel times, which is why tickets can be more expensive.

Is there a good place to hike near Cairns?

Hikers looking for a more family-friendly day in the great outdoors would be best suited to plan their flight to Cairns for June and July, when they can visit South Bank Parklands and enjoy all that the park has to offer.

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
Cheapest
Best
Quickest
Jetstar
30 Nov.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 15m
CNS
Cairns
7 Dec.
CNS
Cairns
2h 10m
BNE
Brisbane
Jetstar
17 Oct.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS
Cairns
26 Oct.
CNS
Cairns
2h 10m
BNE
Brisbane
Jetstar
28 Nov.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 15m
CNS
Cairns
30 Nov.
CNS
Cairns
2h 10m
BNE
Brisbane
Jetstar
12 Nov.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 15m
CNS
Cairns
18 Nov.
CNS
Cairns
2h 10m
BNE
Brisbane
Jetstar
30 Sep.
OOL
Coolangatta Gold Coast
2h 25m
CNS
Cairns
7 Oct.
CNS
Cairns
2h 15m
OOL
Coolangatta Gold Coast
Jetstar
17 Oct.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS
Cairns
20 Oct.
CNS
Cairns
2h 05m
BNE
Brisbane

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
Cheapest
Best
Quickest
Jetstar
17 Oct.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS
Cairns
Virgin Australia
10 Oct.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 30m
CNS
Cairns
Jetstar
13 Oct.
BNE
Brisbane
2h 20m
CNS
Cairns

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
$158
Bilinga to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 25m
Cheapest price
$212
Melbourne to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 15m
Cheapest price
$236
Sydney to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 55m
Cheapest price
$242
Marcoola to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 20m
Cheapest price
$271
Townsville to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
1h 05m
Cheapest price
$286
Adelaide to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
3h 00m
Cheapest price
$299
Darwin to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 25m
Cheapest price
$361
Melbourne to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
5h 55m
Cheapest price
$413
Newcastle to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
4h 50m
Cheapest price
$460
Ballina to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
26h 10m
Cheapest price
$578
Canberra to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
5h 25m
Cheapest price
$579
Hobart to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
5h 35m
Cheapest price
$593
Perth to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
7h 40m
Cheapest price
$623
Auckland to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
22h 20m
Cheapest price
$719
Wellington to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
26h 10m
Cheapest price
$755
Yulara to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
2h 35m
Cheapest price
$853
Hamilton to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
18h 05m
Cheapest price
$1,030
Port Hedland to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
33h 25m
Cheapest price
$1,609
Broome to Cairns Flights
Fastest flight time
28h 50m
Cheapest price
$1,845
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.


Start planning your trip to Cairns


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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