Melbourne is a city with a rich and diverse cultural makeup of different ethnicities, religions and sexual preferences. General good manners are all that is required in this laid-back and open city.
There are some trendy and exclusive bars and restaurants that require smart clothing. However, for the most part, casual attire is acceptable. Tipping is not required although warmly welcomed by restaurant and bar staff as well as hotel help and taxi drivers.
The Australian dollar (AU$) is the local currency used in Melbourne and foreign exchange booths can be found throughout the city. Hotels and banks also provide an outlet for money exchange so visitors should have no problem finding local currency.
Foreign ATM cards are widely accepted in local machines, providing an easy and convenient means for obtaining local currency. Cash is needed for small store purchases and public transport. Most restaurants and shops accept major credit cards as well as hotels and tourist attractions.
The temperate climate of Melbourne is relatively mild, with warm summers and cool winters. Summer lasts from December to February, fall from March to May, winter from June to August and spring from September to November. Temperatures in the winter can get as low as 5°F and in the summer, in excess of 100°F.
Precipitation over the year is relatively low, with approximately 25 inches on average. Although consistent light rainfall, particularly in the winter months, gives the feeling of a wet city. Melbourne weather can change vastly within a day and it's not uncommon to feel all four seasons over the space of 24 hours in the spring and fall months.
Melbourne has an extensive public transport system that consists of trains, trams, buses and taxis. The tram network is the largest of its kind in the world, providing a fun and exciting means of transport. The rail network is also one of the largest in the world, covering a wide area with 16 separate lines servicing the city.
The public buses in the city provide over 300 different routes, with frequent services offering a great way to get around. Metered taxis are the most convenient option, albeit the most expensive. Taxis should be avoided during peak hours, with standstill traffic commonplace.
Traveling to the city from Melbourne International Airport (MLB), also known as Tullamarine Airport, is easy, with a plethora of express bus services, metered taxis and car hire services available. The City Link Freeway connects to the city with a journey time of around 20 minutes on average.
Spoken languages: English
Electrical: 220-240 Volts, 50 Hertz
Phone/calling code: +61 03