Best fares on Spirit

Getting to Tassie is easy, working out the best fare on the Spirit is not.

Best fares on Spirit

Getting to Tassie is easy, working out the best fare on the Spirit is not, but Kay O’Sullivan has some advice for Esther.

Q. Esther
I’ve long had the notion to take my car across on the ferry and tour Tasmania as an inexpensive holiday. But the reality is that the passage on the boat costs so much that it puts me off. Is there a better way to do it? Fly and hire a car? Or a less expensive time to travel? Even when I see the special fares advertised, I can’t seem to secure them.

A. I agree it’s complicated. I had a lengthy conversation and email exchange with the Spirit of Tasmania’s communications team to try and sort this out.

Basically, prices vary depending on availability and demand. And, of course, the cheaper fares are more readily available when the weather is not great. But all is not lost for us bargain hunters!

Standard fares start at $96 per adult each way, but standard cars i.e. not motorhomes/caravans/trailers are the same year round. I’m told passengers can still get a $96 fare in the high-demand season if the demand is low on that sailing and/or they book early enough.

I had to think about that, but I understand it now. You might choose a date in February – a high demand period – that has very few bookings, so you still get the $96 fare. But if you were going the next day, on a nearly full ship, you’d be paying more.

The company says it regularly checks airfares between Melbourne and Hobart with car hire costs and more often than not, the Spirit is the cheaper option.

For the full pictures check out

Low demand season dates are:
20 Apr 15 - 1 Dec 15
13 Feb 16 - 20 Mar 16
18 Apr 16 - 4 Dec 16
18 Feb 17 - 2 Apr 17

High demand season dates are:
2 Dec 15 - 12 Feb 16
21 Mar 16 - 17 Apr 16
5 Dec 16 - 17 Feb 17
3 Apr 17 - 30 Apr 17

If you are still not satisfied that you are getting the best deal, why don’t you give them a ring on 1800 634 906 or drop them an email? It is confusing trying to sort it all out on the web.


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    24th Oct 2015
    This boat is s disgrace., it is subsidised by the fed as s national route and they play around with price of fares to literally price gauge gouge, just like all the airlines. This making it impossible for the less well off to travel to see relatives etc at holiday times.
    Did these ratbags also explain their container policy for the big companies like Toll? They would rather have an empty spot paid for be them than let you take that space. And all tasmania can do is moan that they don't get enough tourists and ask why?
    Flying is the answer and hire a car/camper van IMHO. When I go to the main land I always fly and hire a car. I use virgin/velocity / and their partner Thrifty, a very cheap alternative with some bonuses.
    24th Oct 2015
    Here here,as Bones says its susidised by the ferderal govenment as a national highway and it's still unaffordable,plus im looking at it as a visitor,gee i hate to live there (no disrespect intended)
    24th Oct 2015
    The feds should pull some of the money out of those two bob countries we give money to and make it free. (Sorry I'm dreaming)
    25th Oct 2015
    I have travelled on the 'Spirit' quite a number of times over the past 23 years. Go onto the 'Spirit' website & sign up for e-mail alerts. These with then give you an opportunity to get cheaper fares.

    Pensioner fares are usually cheaper than the Adult fares. Choose your time wisely and always book when these specials come on.

    As for flying, consider the cost of hiring a vehicle for the entire period you will be staying. This can be so much more expensive than the 'Spirit' & car fare. Most car hire companies charge an excess for you to collect your vehicle at the airport, or even the 'Spirit' terminal.

    To see all of Tasmania in one trip, I suggest that you take at least 3 weeks.

    If you are travelling for more than a week, the 'Spirit' and car option is much cheaper. With taking your car over, you can pack as much, or as little as you wish in your car, but if you are flying, then you can usually only take one (1) piece of checked luggage.

    The best advice I can give is to do your homework. How much will it cost you to sail, and how much will it cost you to hire.

    The choice is ultimately yours.

    Enjoy :)

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