Pay for the convenience of a room at an airport hotel and you’ll often get something cheap and nasty (or not necessarily cheap, just downright nasty) for an exorbitant price. However, if you’re flying to or from Brisbane, you’re in luck. There are some great hotels at or near Brisbane Airport that tick the boxes for location, facilities, quiet rooms with comfortable beds, and good air conditioning. The following airport hotels are my top picks for a 24 to 48 hour stay at Brisbane airport. I’ve also included an overview of Brisbane Airport to help you choose where to stay based on which terminal you’re flying from.
Brisbane Airport overview
Brisbane Airport is actually made up of two airports, Brisbane Domestic and Brisbane International, which are located more than two kilometres apart. It’s not possible to walk safely between them. There’s a complimentary Terminal Transfer Bus that runs between 4am and 11pm on a 10 minute loop. No Brisbane airport accommodation options (or hotels near the airport) offer their own Brisbane airport hotel free shuttle service.
When you’re choosing your Brisbane airport hotel, don’t forget to factor in how much transfers are going to cost in addition to the room rate. If you’re arriving after 11pm, you’re going to have to pay for an Uber or a taxi. If you have an early morning domestic flight, a hotel at the domestic airport could save you money when you look at the added cost of a transfer from another hotel.
Luxury Brisbane Airport hotels
Pullman Brisbane Airport
This is Brisbane Airport’s only 5-star hotel and it delivers on quality, convenience, facilities and location as it’s adjacent to the domestic terminal. With prices for a room starting at just over the $200 mark, the Pullman Brisbane Airport is well priced for a five star airport hotel and offers value for money with 132 modern rooms and suites and a club lounge. Some of the standout features of this hotel are its modern styling and quality of service, plus excellent dining that makes it well and truly worthy of its five stars.
I’ve had dinner here and the food was exceptional so don’t let the high-ish prices on the menu put you off. This is more of a destination restaurant than an airport bistro. It’s a 10 minute walk from this hotel to the domestic terminal or a $12 transfer from the international airport (or you can take the free bus if it’s running). Other facilities at the Pullman include a pool, gym and large meeting rooms for business travellers. We stayed here before an early morning flight to Sydney on our way to China and it was terrific.
Alcyone Hotel Residences
This is one of Brisbane’s newest and most modern transit hotels. It’s located in the Portside Cruise Terminal precinct, 10 minutes’ drive from Brisbane airport. Alcyone Hotel Residences consist of one and two-bedroom king bed apartments with and without balconies. Prices start at a very reasonable $220 mark for a one-bedroom king and up to $320 for a two-bedroom king apartment with balcony.
All apartments have private bedrooms with king beds, full kitchens, bathrooms, lounge and dining areas, washer-dryer, dishwasher, and Smart TVs. Balconies have views of the Brisbane River and are perfect for enjoying Brisbane’s lovely weather. Nearby Portside offers multiple restaurants, a cinema, and cafes just a few minutes’ walk away.
There is also the Brisbane Citycat ferry terminal close by giving travellers an excellent transport option to get to the Brisbane CBD, South Bank and other great Brisbane river suburbs to explore. Another option for weekend visitors is the Eat Street Northshore area; this is a large food stall and live music venue only 10 minutes walk from the hotel, and a Brisbane insider must do. With facilities like a gym, large outdoor pool and gazebo BBQ area this hotel is perfect for recovering after a long flight. Overall, this is my pick for the best apartment hotel option, especially if you’re staying for more than 24 hours and want convenience and things to do.
Mid Priced Brisbane Airport hotels
Novotel Brisbane Airport
Located around 5 minutes’ drive from both Brisbane airport terminals, the Novotel is a standalone 4-star hotel that offers travellers a pleasant stay at a reasonable price point. While it’s not what you would call expensive, it is a bit pricey for a mid-range hotel with rooms starting at $220 for a standard room and $400 for a suite. Compared to the Pullman, this is not the best value. The Novotel Brisbane Airport is an older 4-star property that is not actually located at the airport yet it has the same pricing as its 5-star sister hotel.
However, what sets the Novotel apart is its convenient location to the large DFO shopping and dining precinct at Brisbane Skygate. If you want to grab fresh groceries at 2am or shop till you drop at the DFO discount outlet mall next door, then the Novotel is a great option. Rooms are a standard Novotel design and deliver on a good night’s sleep with above-average size rooms that don’t have you tripping over your bags to get to the bed or bathroom. Bathing can be a walk-in shower or bath shower combo.
Dining is taken care of by the rather pricey Catalina Restaurant. Note this is more of a bistro than fine dining. Kids under 16 stay free at all Novotel hotels which makes this a good option for families. Facilities include a pool and gym, meeting rooms for business travellers and an airport shuttle service for a fee. Or you can walk to Skygate and take the free Skygate shuttle which operates from around 6.30am to 4pm.
Link Portside Apartment Hotel
Located near the Portside Cruise Terminal and 10 minutes’ drive from the airport, this is an excellent apartment style accommodation option that’s perfect for families or those seeking more room. The one and two bedroom apartments at the Link Portside Apartment Hotel have either a queen or king bed with full kitchens, bathrooms, lounge and dining areas, washer-dryer, dishwasher, and an outdoor patio area.
Prices start at $220 for a one-bedroom and $330 for a two-bedroom apartment per night. Like its neighbouring property, the Alcyone Hotel Residences, there are multiple facilities available nearby. Overall the Link Portside Apartment Hotel is an above-average hotel in a great location with everything at your door, such as multiple restaurants, a cinema, cafes and a CityCat terminal.
Budget Brisbane Airport hotels
ibis Brisbane Airport Hotel
There are two ibis hotels at Brisbane Airport. Choose carefully as they’re both quite different. If you book the wrong one by mistake, you will probably be disappointed. ibis Brisbane Airport Hotel is the best budget option when you consider the quality of the rooms and the hotel’s convenient location next to the Pullman and within walking distance of the domestic terminal. Rooms come in two configurations: a Standard Room with 1 Queen Sized Bed or a Standard Twin Room with 1 Double and 1 Single Bed. Both rooms cost the same at $159 and have private bathrooms with a shower, a mini-fridge, and a kettle with tea and coffee.
It’s worth requesting a high floor with an airport view for plane spotting. ibis Brisbane Airport Hotel ticks a lot of boxes but it pays to remember this is a budget hotel. Rooms are on the small size at only 20sqm and meals tend to be burgers, pizzas, and fish and chips. Overall, this is an excellent hotel for the price point. If you want something else to eat, you can always head next door to the Pullman or walk to the domestic terminal.
ibis Budget Brisbane Airport
Just a few minutes’ drive from the international airport terminal, the ibis Budget Brisbane Airport hotel is located on a bustling intersection on the edge of an industrial area. There are no dining options onsite or nearby which could be problematic if you don’t eat before you arrive at the hotel. Continental breakfast is free. On the plus side it’s well-priced at less than $120 including continental breakfast. There’s an airport shuttle for $5 one way per room, but it’s not available 24/7 so check when you book.
Rooms range from a Standard Room with 1 Queen Bed to rooms sleeping up to four people in a queen and bunk bed combination. Rooms are airconditioned and have a mini-fridge and a bathroom with a walk-in shower. This is a ‘sleep and scoot’ hotel with basic rooms and no dining or entertainment options onsite or nearby. While there aren’t many facilities you do get what you pay for with this well-priced hotel.
Ascot Budget Inn and Residences
If you’re a single traveller or after a hotel that suits a (very) tight budget, the modestly priced Ascot Budget Inn and Residences hits the spot. Located 7km from the Brisbane Airport, a 10-minute drive gets you to the posh suburb of Ascot and the Ascot Budget Inn and Residences. This hotel is located in two separate buildings with the new apartment-style block around the corner from the older budget hotel rooms on Nudgee Road. Rooms start at $67 for a single room with shared facilities and up to $174 for a two-bedroom self-contained unit that sleeps up to six people.
All rooms are airconditioned and have basic standard inclusions such as a mini fridge, kettle with tea and coffee, chair and a work desk. On-site facilities include a shared laundry with coin-operated machines and free continental breakfast. This accommodation is located in an upmarket area close to shops, cafes and restaurants. Overall, rooms are clean and tidy but also small and basic so they’re best suited to ‘sleep and scoot’ stays with dinner at one of the surrounding restaurants.
Disclosure: The writer loves staying at airport hotels as it means he doesn’t have to get up so early in the morning to catch a flight. If he is arriving into a city late at night or in the early hours of the morning, he will often book a cheap airport hotel and catch public transport to the city the next day.
Want to travel smarter and save money? Check out our tips for flying a low cost airline, keeping your luggage safe, visiting Europe in peak season, getting a great car hire deal, avoiding travel scams, saving money at the airport, staying at an Airbnb, finding cheap five star hotel deals, catching public transport overseas, staying safe in a big city, getting the best round-the-world airfares, making the most of a five star hotel stay, travelling during low season, visiting a theme park in peak season, packing a carry on bag, visiting a wine region, planning a romantic getaway, early morning flights, visiting the Great Barrier Reef, multigenerational travel, travelling in a motorhome, buying the best souvenirs, going on safari, visiting the Eiffel Tower, travelling with pets, holidaying with adult children, travelling with teens, and sleeping on a plane.