There is no shortage of transport options that are available in Sydney, it just depends on your budget as to what method is best for you.
It is worth noting that Sydney airport is widely known as one of the world's most expensive airports, so planning is important to ensure that you don't cut too much into your travel budget before you reach the doors of your hotel! It can actually be more expensive to get to your hotel than it is to get a domestic airfare.
Here are some of the most common transport options for getting from Kingsford Smith Airport to Sydney hotels.
If you are travelling with a partner and your hotel is less than five kilometres from the airport, then a taxi may be one of the most cost-effective and convenient methods for you to get to your accommodation. If your hotel is in the Sydney CBD, then you can expect to part with a fifty dollar note, but if you are only travelling in close proximity to the airport it should only be about $20. One negative to consider is the potential for being caught in traffic, especially at peak hour. The roads around Kingsford Smith Airport are renowned for getting gridlocked especially from 4:30-6:00 pm on weekdays. There are taxi marshalls that can help you organise a taxi with wheelchair access or child seats.
UberX is one of the most common forms of airport transport used by Sydney locals that live near the airport. As fares are about 20% cheaper than a taxi it is cost-effective. Make sure that you have downloaded the Uber app and have setup an account before you arrive in Sydney. You will also need data on your mobile device, so you need to factor in the time and hassle of getting a SIM if you are a backpacker or international traveller.
If you are travelling on your own and staying in the Sydney CBD or out West in Parramatta, the Sydney train network is probably the most affordable option. Though there is an extra Airport Link fee for entering the train network from both the international and domestic airport terminals, the total cost of your trip to the city should not exceed $16 per way. If you are staying in the CBD, the train is normally the quickest way of getting to your accommodation, especially around peak hour. One major downfall of travelling by train to your accommodation is that annoyance of bringing your luggage with you on the train. Though Sydney trains rarely get packed like in East Asia, it is still a challenge to drag your luggage onto and off the train. Additionally, if your accommodation is not near a train station it is not worth considering this option.
Sydney Buses operate route 400 from both the Domestic and International terminals. Once you leave the arrivals terminal you should see signs towards the buses. This route will take you to Burwood, Rockdale, Mascot, Maroubra, Randwick and Bondi. If you are travelling on your own, don't have any luggage, and have a hotel that is close to the bus stops on this route then it might be a viable option, but otherwise can be too much of a hassle for the average traveller.
Hotel Shuttle Service
If your hotel/hostel/backpackers has a free airport pickup then all of the stress is eliminated for you. Make sure that there are no extra fees for airport pick-up when you are booking your accommodation. Some upmarket hotels will widely proclaim that they offer airport pick-up, but when you actually enquire about the service you will find that the service is not complimentary, but actually costs more than an average taxi trip would cost. Jolly Swagman Backpackers Sydney offers a free airport pickup service to their hostel in Kings Cross. When all is considered, this is an absolute bargain! It costs more to get a taxi to Kings Cross from the airport than it does to get a nights accommodation and the included free transport at Jolly Swagman Backpackers Sydney.