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Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

Level Contributor
3 posts
3 reviews
Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

I'm travelling to Australia in January and have just found out that you are not allowed to take rental cars on the ferry. Does anyone know what the actual restriction is? What happens if we do it anyway? Will the Ferry allow the rental car on? What are the chances of anything happening?


South Pole
Level Contributor
15,381 posts
36 reviews
1. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

the queenscliff ferry doesn't actually run to phillip island. it crosses from queenscliff to sorrento on the mornington peninsula. u have to travel by road from there to phillip island. and yes we have heard that some (maybe all?) rental companies do not allow their cars on the ferry. this is nothing to do with the ferry company, who would not prevent u from using the service. if u do use it (and contradict your rental car company's t and c's) u would be 100% liable for any damage or loss that occurs to the car when it is on the ferry. this would be despite any insurance u have taken out.

chances of car damage imo are higher than normal as there are lots of cars in close proximity during loading, parking and unloading. i think it is best to check with the various rental companies as to their policy.

Destination Expert
for Victoria
Level Contributor
3,785 posts
62 reviews
2. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

This discussion has come up many times and it could pay to search for other ferry stories. I have only ever taken my own car on the ferry and wouldn't think there was any more chance of damage to your car than normal day to day activities. It is just basically a big car park. It is a bay crossing as well and even though Port Phillip Bay can get reasonably rough at times, it isn't anything like ocean rough, that could cause cars to move around.

One of the other discussion points is that some hire cars allow access to the ferry....so not sure how locked into a particular company you are. Can't help with who can and who won't allow it.

As lien says it doesn't run to Phillip Island but not sure if you meant that in your heading.

Level Contributor
2,157 posts
179 reviews
3. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

I agree with Willnino - I don't think there's a big risk of damage to cars on the ferry or while loading/unloading. And the ferry operator doesn't care who owns the car, so there's no problem with them taking a hire car. The only issue is that at least some of the car rental companies have a rule that their cars can't be taken on the ferry, which means that if something did happen to the car while you were on the ferry, they would hold you responsible for the cost. A bit unreasonable, I think, given the cost of excess reduction cover, but that seems to be the way it is.

-- G

Level Contributor
3,247 posts
9 reviews
4. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

There is one company that doesn't object to their cars going on ferries. I think its Thrifty so worth checking their website. If you couldn't take cars on any ferries I'm not sute you would get around some parts of Australia where ferries are the bridge across rivers still.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Business Travel, New South Wales
Level Contributor
30,132 posts
1,403 reviews
5. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

We took a thrifty rental car across.......its highly unlikely the ferry is going to sink !


Level Contributor
75 posts
23 reviews
6. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

This comes up on a regular basis. A quick run around the major car rental agencies found the majority DO NOT have restrictions on the Queencliffe-Sorrento ferry. But do check with your renter.

The risk? At one end a bump from somebody who doesn't stop fast enough. Maybe a repair that wouldn't be more than the excess anyway. At the other end the ferry goes down with the car on it - then the ferry's insurer will presumably pick up the bill. Hard to think of anything happening in between.

Melbourne, Australia
Destination Expert
for Melbourne, Victoria, Road Trips
Level Contributor
4,550 posts
12 reviews
7. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

Do check the fine print on your Rental agreement to see if they specifically say the car can't be taken on the ferry. If they do, then you have to decide whether you will take the risk of any damage not being covered. I haven't been on the ferry myself, so can't comment on the chances of damage, but I don't think people would use it if their cars were always getting bumped.

Hong Kong
Level Contributor
27 posts
8. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

I have sent email to the ferry company and the reply is they take all vehicles on the ferry.

Destination Expert
for Victoria
Level Contributor
3,785 posts
62 reviews
9. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

cokecan, as mentioned in a post above, there is no problem with the ferry company.....they will take any paying customer. The issue is whether individual hire companies put in a clause to say "no ferry".

I would think that 99.99% of time you would have absolutely no problems and really if you got a little ding in the car due to someone opening a door onto your car, how would a hire company prove it was done on a ferry and not in a suburban street.

Really as is also mentioned, the only real drama would be the ferry sinking and then you may have more important things to consider but the chances of that happening would have to be a million to one.

10. Re: Queenscliff Ferry to Phillip Island

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