Cruising the Seven Seas
Overseas Passenger Terminal
Overseas Passenger Terminal, Sydney
Sydney’s port features a purpose built cruise passenger terminal, aptly named the Overseas Passenger Terminal, located in very heart of Sydney at Circular Quay.
Operating hours – The terminal is accessible from 5am for passengers disembarking the ship and 1 hour after departure of the ship. (During this time the terminal is a restricted area only available to authorised personnel and cruise passengers.
Getting to and from Overseas Passenger Terminal is straight forward with the best to options being car/taxi pick-up and drop-offs at the designated bay or by public transport to Circular Quay.
Getting to the terminal is easy, simply enter from George Street onto Argyle Street to access the pick-up & drop off area. Please note that no parking is permitted at the drop off area.
Buses, trains and ferries stop at Circular Quay station – just a short walk from the terminal. Plan you trip with this handy link from Transport NSW.
Sydney Opera House Car Park
Wilson Parking, the operator of the Sydney Opera House Car Park, has an offer of $25 parking per day (min 7 days to 14 days).
Transfers from the Airport
Carnival Cruise Line and others sell transfers to and from Sydney Airport to the Overseas Passenger Terminal. Be sure to book your transfer 5 days before you set sail. Expect the transfer fee to cost approximately $20.
Departures & Arrivals
Here’s what to expect when you arrive at Sydney’s Passenger Terminal.
Upon arrival at the Sydney Passenger Terminal, you’ll be required to fill out two documents at Customs & Immigration:
- Outbound passenger card (international)
- Health questionnaire (international & domestic)
Both documents will be made available to you at the terminal on your arrival. Once you’ve completed this process, simply follow the prompts from the cruise line to make your way aboard the vessel.
Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS)
A TRS form is also available to claim a refund on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Wine Equalisation Tax (WET) for goods purchased in Australia. Pick up a form after checking in from the Customs at embarkation.
Bag Drop & Luggage Store
The terminal’s bag drop typically opens around 8:30am. Check with your cruise line for times. You can also store your luggage with Smarte Carte at Circular Quay.
On your arrival back in Sydney, you will need to reclaim your luggage and clear customs before exiting the terminal.
What to Bring
If you’re going to forget everything else, here’s what you must absolutely bring with you when boarding the ship.
- International Cruise – Individual passports valid for at least 6 months
- Domestic Cruise – Government agency issued Photo ID
- Booking Itinerary printout
- Essential Medication (bring extra for unforeseen extensions to your trip)
- Credit cards and cash
- Your Cover My Trip insurance policy and contact numbers
Beyond these essentials, you’ll find more tips on what to bring on your next cruise on the handy guide we’ve created. Print it out and use it as a checklist on your next cruise.
What not to bring
You are not permitted to bring any alcohol aboard for personal consumption as per Sydney Ports regulations. If you’re celebrating a special occasion, you may want to discuss this with your travel agent.
The terminal’s facilities include:
- Wheelchair access – Wheelchair assistance is provided at the terminal through the shipping operator if a request is made at the time of booking
- Commonwealth Bank ATM
- Foreign Exchange – available at Circular Quay Station
No Post Office & no Duty-Free
The Overseas Passenger Terminal DOES NOT feature a Post Office. It also does not have a Duty-Free shop nor does the terminal feature WiFi.
Book your Cruise Insurance Cover
It’s important to get travel insurance, as soon as you put down deposits or pay for your cruise, up to 12 months in advance. Travel insurance doesn’t cost any more if you purchase it earlier, but it does cover you for any cancellations or if you injure yourself prior to your holiday and it inhibits you from going (e.g. breaking your leg prior to a big family cruise).