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Everything You Need to Know about Adelaide’s Tram System

Everything You Need to Know about Adelaide’s Tram System

Traveling in a city can be daunting, but thanks to Adelaide’s reliable transportation system, we Adelaideans find it a breeze! It’s partially the reason why traveling times here can be as quick as 20 minutes

Riding the good’ ol tram is an easy way to get around town. It’s cheap and fast, and it even has the quaint charm that makes it a big hit among tourists. 

In this article, I’ll guide you through the ins and outs of Adelaide’s tram system, its history, how much you pay for it, and more. We, locals, take great pride in our transportation system, so you’re definitely in for a ride! 

History of Adelaide’s Tram System

History of Adelaide’s Tram System

Did you know that Adelaide’s iconic tram system has been in operation since 1878? In the early days, the trams were pulled by horses, making every trip a quaint and charming experience. 

As the city grew and developed, so did the tram system. At its peak, Adelaide boasted the largest tram network in all of Australia! 

The tram routes extended to some of the city’s most iconic locations, including Henley Beach, Port Adelaide, Mitcham, Burnside, and Glen Osmond.

Back then, the horses that pulled the trams were more than just a means of transportation. They were an essential part of Adelaide’s economy. 

These hard-working horses carried vital products for the local economy, making it the lifeline of local businesses. 

When were the first electric trams installed in Adelaide?

When were the first electric trams installed in Adelaide

In 1909, the government-led Municipal Tramways Trust made a groundbreaking move by introducing the city’s first electric trams! 

The electric trams didn’t immediately replace the horse-drawn carriages as both worked alongside each other for several years. It wasn’t until 1914 that the horses were fully phased out.

Now you may wonder why it took so long to do so. The primary reason is that it wasn’t easy to transition to a new source of energy without significant investment. 

Thankfully, their labor bore great benefits for the city, as it resulted in a faster, more reliable, and cleaner transportation system. It was goodbye to horse manure-ridden roads and hello to a new age of the tram system! 

How much is the tram in Adelaide? 

Here are Adelaide’s tram card prices:

Applicable forPeak travel timesOff-peak travel times
Regular card$4.05$2.25
Single trip$5.90$4.00
Concession card$2.00$1.10
Concession single trip card$3.00$1.40

As you can see, it’s best to travel when it’s not peak hours so you get cheaper fares. The peak travel times in Adelaide are from 9:00 AM to 3:00 on weekdays and all day during weekends. 

Are trams in Adelaide free?
The tram in Adelaide is free if you’ll ride it on specific stops! Specifically, the stops within the CBD (Victoria Square, Rundle Mall, etc.) are free. 
You can also hop on the tram for free if you’re traveling from the Jetty Road strip located at Glenelg. 
The only stops where you need to pay are the ones between Brighton Road and South Terrace. 

How do you pay for the tram in Adelaide?
You can pay for tram fare in Adelaide through the metroCARD, which can also be used for the metro rail and for buses. It’s rechargeable through Metro vending machines found at train stops and various spots all over Adelaide.

What are the different routes of the trams in Adelaide?

Adelaide’s tram stops can be seen in the map below:

What are the different routes of the trams in Adelaide
LabelStart and endWhat to do here
GLNELGGlenelg to Royal Adelaide HospitalAttend live music concertsVisit the different pubs nearbyVisit Glenelg BeachVisit water theme parksVisit Dunluce CastleWatch a show at the Royal Adelaide ShowBuy fresh produce at Adelaide Showground Farmers’ MarketVisit the art deco-themed Capri TheatreMarvel at the heritage buildings
BTANICEntertainment Center to Botanic GardensVisit the University of the AdelaideBring your kids to the playgroundHave a picnic at the open grounds
FESTVLGlenelg to Festival PlazaAttend a concert at the 1920’s themed concert venuePlay at the ice arenaWatch buskersLook for the cheapest findsVisit Art Gallery of South AustraliaHave a picnicWatch the fountain showHave a bite and a drink at one of the many cafesWatch the Adelaide Cup
ADLOOPSouth Terrace to Fesival PlazaVisit Adelaide Himeji Garden
How often does the tram arrive in Adelaide?
There’s no need to meticulously plan out your trip via tram in Adelaide, as it arrives every 10 minutes. It even arrives 5 minutes earlier during peak hours. 
There’s a thorough guide for the timetables in Adelaide available on this website.

Do the trams in Adelaide run during midnights?
Unfortunately, Adelaide’s trams only run from 6 AM to 12 AM. Only the buses are available past midnight before Sundays.

Are the trams in Adelaide accessible?
Adelaide’s trams are accessible: they’re wheel-chair friendly, can carry mobility scooters, and have ramps built into them. 
Every tram has a representative to assist those with special needs. If you have any inquiries, you can contact them at 1300 311 108.

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