Queensland Rail has been progressively upgrading our Travel network stations to meet the Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport (2002).
This work has involved upgrading a number of our stations with compliant ramps, lighting, accessible toilets, car-parking facilities, tactile pavers, public address systems with hearing aid loops, assistance phones for timetable information and reservations, and accessible seating and shelters for passengers with mobility impairments.
Work has been completed on the North Coast, Great Northern, Central Western and South Western lines.
For information about facilities at specific Travel network stations please call our Customer Contact Centre on 1800 872 467 (or +61 7 3235 7322 for international callers).
Please click on the links below for more acessible information on the Travel network:
Booking your journey
How to book
Bookings for passengers with disabilities are managed through our Customer Contact Centre, to ensure all special requirements are addressed.
You may contact us via the Customer Contact Centre between 7am and 7pm AEST, seven days a week.
- 1800 872 467 (within Australia)
- +61 7 3235 7322 (outside Australia)
- National Relay Service: 133 677
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pensioner's carer entitlement
If a customer with a disability or other special care requirement is travelling on their Queensland Resident Pension Concession Rail Entitlements, their carer may also be eligible for free rail travel. All requests for free travel by a carer must be substantiated by a letter from a doctor,or an association for people with a disability. The letter must attest to the customer's disability and the requirement for a carer to travel with them.
Free rail travel for carers is available for the same type and class of accommodation, and travel between the same stations as the pensioner they are accompanying. Additional charges such as berth fees and meals must be paid by both the pensioner and the carer.
It is not necessary for the customer to obtain a fresh letter each time they wish to travel. Letters will be accepted provided they are less than 2 years old.
This concession is not provided for the purpose of allowing family members or friends to obtain free travel. Carers travelling on the entitlements of the pensioner are expected to provide nursing and mobility assistance on the journey. There is no specific age restriction that applies to a carer, however they must be physically able to perform all associated assistance tasks.
If the customer is not using their Pension Concession Rail Entitlements and are travelling on a 50 % rail discounted fare, the carer doesn't receive free travel.
When a customer with a disability or other special care requirements is not in receipt of a pension, both the customer with the disability and the carer are required to pay the appropriate fare for the journey.
Booking policy on Tilt Trains
Accessible wheelchair spaces are located in the Business seat carriage (Car A) of both the Bundaberg and Rockhampton Tilt Trains. Customers travelling in their wheelchair are charged an economy seat fare. When travelling as part of a group or with a carer, other members of the party may also travel in the Business seat carriage at the economy rate so they are not separated.
The Cairns Tilt Train is comprised of Business seats only and accessible wheelchair spaces. Customers travelling in their wheelchair are charged an economy seat fare. When travelling as part of a group or with a carer, other members of the party may also travel in the Business seat carriage at the economy rate.
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On your journey
Boarding and disembarking
Tilt Trains have a retractable step that folds down to assist passengers entering and exiting the carriage. Wheelchair ramps can be made available to assist with boarding and disembarking our services at most state-wide stations. Please advise your travel consultant if this kind of assistance is required.
If family or friends are required to assist customers to entrain the service, they must contact an onboard staff member on the day when they are boarding.
This is to ensure the customer can be safely boarded and that the people assisting can safely detrain prior to the doors being locked in readiness for departure.
Travelling with a wheelchair
Passengers travelling in a wheelchair can board or disembark Tilt Train services via a fold out ramp, which is kept onboard. Please note that unfortunately wheelchair access is currently not available on other Traveltrain services.
Most types of motorised wheelchairs or scooters can be accommodated on Tilt Train services. Our Customer Contact Centre staff will be able to advise if your particular model of mobility device is able to safely gain access to the Tilt Train.
It is recommended that customers in manual wheelchairs, which need to be pushed from behind, arrange for a companion to assist them with boarding and disembarking, both at the point of departure and at the final destination. While our staff are happy to offer assistance, in some instances health and safety legislation may limit the level of assistance they are able to provide.
Long term plans are in place to improve access and upgrade onboard facilities for passengers travelling in wheelchairs.
Using the wheelchair accessibile space
Passengers can choose to have their wheelchair secured into position by tie down straps, or use the wheelchair’s braking mechanism. Your preference will be noted at the time of booking.
Please note that if the tie down strap option is used, only onboard staff can release the wheelchair and they may only do so when the train is stationary. Passengers that do not use the tie down strap option can access the toilet facility at any time en route, however for safety reasons we recommend waiting until the train is stationary. Timetables are available to assist the planning of such visits throughout your journey.
Transferring from a wheelchair to a standard seat
Passengers who wish to transfer to a standard seat from their wheelchair may do so if they are able or have a carer to assist. The seat’s external arm rest can be raised into a vertical position to assist with this process. Your wheelchair can be stored in a wheelchair space and used throughout the journey as required.
On the electric Tilt Trains between Brisbane and Rockhampton, the last row of seats in Car A can be rotated so passengers travelling in a wheelchair can face their companions. On the diesel Tilt Train between Brisbane and Cairns there is the opportunity for wheelchairs to sit next to the fixed seating.
Collapsible wheelchairs which are compact and easily manoeuvred up and down the aisles are available on all state-wide services. Passengers who experience difficulty walking may request the use of these wheelchairs.
Our onboard staff strive to make your journey as comfortable as possible. Please advise your travel consultant of any assistance you may require at the time of booking.
Please note that for health and safety and legal reasons there are some limitations to the assistance our staff can provide.
Onboard staff can provide passengers with a disability the following assistance:
- On and off the train (please note staff cannot lift passengers)
- To or from their seat or sleeping berth when joining or leaving a service
- To or from their seat or sleeping berth to toilet and shower facility entrances (please note no assistance can be provided inside toilets or showers)
- To serve meals to their seats if required
Onboard staff can not provide the following assistance:
- Lifting passengers in any way
- Giving injections
- Administering medication
- Assistance with meals
- Helping passengers on or off the toilet pedestal
- Washing passengers
- Emptying colostomy bags, urine bottles or similar equipment
- Should assistance of this nature be required, passengers will need to arrange for a carer, friend or relative to travel with them.
The Tilt Trains offer in-seat trolley service throughout the journey. On other services, onboard staff can arrange for meals to be delivered to passengers with disabilities at their seat or sleeping berth.
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Guide, Hearing and Assistance Animals
For the safety and comfort of all customers, animals are not permitted on any Queensland Rail Travel service with the exception of guide, hearing or assistance animals.
Assistance animals must be suitably trained to assist the person with the disability to alleviate the effect of their disability and to meet standards of hygiene and behaviour that are appropriate for an animal in a public place.
Pre approved bookings are required for all customers travelling with guide, hearing or assistance animals.
Customers are requested to apply for travel for themselves and their guide, hearing or assistance animal in advance to avoid any unnecessary delay in processing their request and to ensure that suitable seating can be reserved.
Passes accepted by Queensland Rail Travel for Guide, Hearing and Assistance Animals
- TransLink Assistance Animal Pass
Information and application process can be viewed on the TransLink website (new window)
- Handler Identity cards issued by the Queensland Government to individuals approved under the Guide, Hearing and Assistance Dogs Act 2009. The Handler Identity Card includes a photo of the handler and their dog.
- Passes issued by Queensland Government Communities approved institutions and trainers listed on the Department of Communities website (new window)
- When animals are not registered with this list of approved training organisation for assistance animals, but do provide assistance to the customer to alleviate the effects of a disability, a customer must apply with Queensland Rail Travel for approval , prior to making a booking. Customers are requested to register their assistance animal prior to travel to avoid any unnecessary delay in processing their request. In accordance with the Queensland Rail Travel Policy, customers who are unable to produce sufficient evidence of their need for an assistance animal as well as evidence that the animal has been trained appropriately may be refused travel with their assistance animal.
Aspects to be considered, especially in relation to dogs, include the:
- Training (including sanitary requirements)
- Nature of the assistance provided
Queensland Rail Travel has the right to refuse entry to its premises or vehicles by customers accompanied by animals; if the person with the disability does not provide sufficient evidence that the animal is an assistance animal or that the animal is trained to meet standards of hygiene and behaviour that are appropriate for an animal in a public place.
Non-compliant animals include:
- Breeds that are banned by local government authorities such as pit bull terriers
- Savage, excitable and noisy dogs or other animals
- Dogs or other animals that do not respond to control and assistance commands
- Dogs or other animals that are not toilet trained for public places and public passenger vehicles
- Dogs or other animals that do not provide assistance to the customer that alleviates the effect of a disability and are for the purpose of companionship only.
Assistance animals most commonly assist customers who:
- Are blind or vision impaired;
- Are deaf or hearing impaired;
- Have little or no use of their limbs;
- Have a medical condition where there are episodes of loss of consciousness such as sever epilepsy or unstable diabetes; or
- Have some form of anxiety disorder.
An assistance animal is not a pet or an animal trained to assist people who do not have a disability (e.g. guard dog or mustering dog).
Dogs and puppies in training
Queensland Rail accepts trainers with dogs and puppies who are registered with the Department of Communities. As with other customers travelling with guide, hearing and assistance animals, Queensland Rail requests trainers to register prior to travel to avoid any unnecessary delays.
All, guide, hearing and assistance animals will be carried free of charge on Queensland Rail Travel services.
Travelling on TransLink City network Services:
Please note that for approval to travel with guide, hearing or assistance animals on TransLink services they have a different policy in place and customers should contact TransLink on the following:
- Website: TransLink (new window)
- Phone: 13 12 30
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Travel network fleet accessibility
The Bundaberg and Rockhampton Tilt Train services feature a large accessible toilet, and space for up to three people to travel in their wheelchairs.
The toilet is located at the rear of the business class carriage (Car A) and has a large sliding door, a timer which automatically closes the door after entry, specially designed hand rails, an emergency call button and a switch to lock the door for privacy.
Cars F and G on the Cairns Tilt Train have three wheelchair accessible spaces as well as an accessible toilet and shower compartment. The compartment has a large sliding door, a timer which automatically closes the door after entry, specially designed hand rails, an emergency call button and a switch to lock the door for privacy.
Passengers with vision impairments
To assist passengers with visual impairments all Tilt Train services have:
- High visibility handrails and grab handles on seat backs
- Seats, aisles and flooring in contrasting colours
- Accessible signage provided throughout the carriages with raised text, clear colour contrasts, pictograms and Braille
- Overheadlockers with raised numbers and Braille to assist you in identifying your seat location
Passengers with hearing impairments
To assist people with a hearing impairment all Tilt Train services have:
- Captioning on all safety and information messages, lifestyle programmes and selected movies
- Improved passenger controls for headset sound clarity
- Hearing aid loops onboard
The Sunlander, Spirit of the Outback, The Westlander and The Inlander
Unfortunately our traditional services are not fully accessible for people with disabilities at the present time. Your travel consultant will be able to advise if you are able to safely access and travel on these additional services.
Long term plans are in place to improve access and upgrade onboard facilities for passengers with disabilities.
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Frequently asked questions
Wheelchairs and mobility aids
Question 1. I use a wheelchair and would like to know what facilities are provided onboard the train to cater for my travelling requirements?
Answer: The Tilt Trains offer a modern service, including wheelchair accessible facilities. When you board the Tilt Train or disembark a staff member will assist by positioning a ramp that can be used to assist you on and off the service. An allocated wheelchair space is available for you to remain in your wheelchair or transfer to a seat, if able to do so. Additionally, the Tilt Trains have accessible bathroom facilities, including a shower (Cairns Tilt train only) and baby change table.
The traditional style of rail travel offered by our other services is not fully accessible to people who use a wheelchair due to narrow door and aisle ways. However, a small onboard chair is available for use once inside the train. Please discuss your exact requirements with your travel consultant to determine if you will be able to safely use the service.
Question 2. I can walk short distances but use a mobility scooter to get around. Can I take the scooter on the train with me?
Answer: Mobility devices such as scooters can be stored in the baggage carriage on all Traveltrain services. However, a booking is required as space is limited. If you are going on the Tilt Train you may have the option of remaining in your scooter for the duration of the journey, depending on the size of your scooter. Please let your travel consultant know the dimensions of your scooter and which option you would prefer so the necessary arrangements can be made.
Question 3. I have trouble walking and use a walking frame. Will I be able to do so onboard?
Answer: You may be able to use a walking frame or other mobility aid, depending on its size. Please let your travel consultant know the dimensions of the device so that they can confirm the aisle will accommodate the device.
Question 4. I have a hearing impairment and want to know what onboard facilities or processes are in place to assist me?
Answer: Please ensure that you inform your travel consultant about your hearing impairment when booking as these details are then forwarded to onboard staff. The Tilt Trains provide captioning on all safety and information messages, lifestyle programmes and selected movies. Additionally, hearing aid loops have been installed and improved passenger controls for headset sound clarity. Vision Impairment:
Question 5. I have a vision impairment, do you have any onboard facilities or processes in place to assist me?
Answer: Please ensure that you inform your travel consultant about your vision impairment when booking so we can advise our onboard staff. Onboard staff can help you in a number of ways such as assisting you with boarding, disembarking, helping you in and out of your seat and bringing meals or light refreshments to your seat or berth.
All Tilt Train services have:
- High visibility handrails and grab handles on seat backs
- Seats, aisle-ways and flooring in contrasting colours
accessible signage provided throughout the carriages with raised text, clear colour contrasts, pictograms and Braille
- Overhead lockers with raised numbers and Braille to assist you in identifying your seat location
- Guide, hearing and assistance dogs
Question 6. Can I travel on a long distance service with my assistance dog?
Answer: You may, provided the assistance animal meets Queensland Rail Travel’s approved criteria.
For further information please call the Customer Contact Centre on 1800 872 467 or view the information on the Queensland Rail website.
Passengers with trained guide dogs or hearing dogs do not have to complete the application process. Registration with the approved organisation that trained the dog is sufficient. The identity card issued by the training organisation is accepted as proof of eligibility to access Queensland premises and trains.
Question 7. I require assistance with my medication on my journey, can onboard staff help me?
Answer: While onboard staff are trained in first aid procedures, they cannot provide assistance with:
- Giving injections/administering medication
- Assistance on or off the toilet pedestal or emptying colostomy bags or urine bottles.
You will need to arrange for a carer, friend or relative to travel with you should you require this type of assistance.
Question 8. I have a Queensland Resident Pension Concession Card and am using my rail entitlements. Will my concession entitlements also cover my carer when I travel?
Answer: Yes. The four rail entitlement journeys you receive each year can also include access to carers travel rates. Written confirmation is required from either your doctor or an organisation for people with disabilities, verifying that you require a carer to travel with you. Alternatively, if you have a companion card, this can be used instead of obtaining this written confirmation to be eligible for carer travel rates.
For further information please refer to the Booking your journey section or call the Customer Contact Centre on 1800 872 467.
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