Don’t confuse the Concession Opal Card and the Seniors/Pensioner Opal Card – there’s a big difference.
If you’re leaving for Sydney soon, don’t think you can arrive there and pick up a Gold Senior/Pensioner Opal Card from a ticket office when you get there – you can’t. You can show your Seniors Card and buy a Concession Opal Card which will give you a 50% discount on all your train, bus, ferry and light rail trips. But the card you really need is the Gold Senior/Pensioner Opal card .
With the Gold Senior/Pensioner card, you’re entitled to the $2.50 travel anywhere in the Sydney Opal network deal. Go back and forth to Manly all day on the ferry, or take a train to Katoomba AND a ferry ride to Parramatta, it all caps out at just $2.50 for the whole day. Like your shopping, you can travel around Sydney until you drop! All for just $2.50. (excluding the shopping)
To get a Gold Senior/Pensioner Card you’ll need to prove you’re eligible. Once you’ve convinced them you’re eligible, they’ll send you your card in the mail.
NSW and ACT seniors
The place to start is the Opal site card order page. Or, give TransportNSW a call on 13 67 25 (13 OPAL)
If you call, just be certain to have your NSW or ACT Seniors, NSW War Widow/er card or your Pensioner Concession card ready.
You’ll need to apply 2-3 weeks before your departure to Sydney as the card will be posted to your address.
Only Pensioner Concession card holders can apply online or over the phone. Go to the Opal site card order page. Or, give TransportNSW a call on 13 67 25 (13 OPAL)
If you hold an Australian State or Territory Government issued Seniors card, you need to fill out this application form Interstate Seniors application form (pdf 270KB)
and post or email it back. They’ll then send you your card in the mail.
More at the Opal site card order page.
Suggestion on how to top up your Opal card
Do yourself a favour and link your Opal card to your credit, debit or EFTPOS card. When the card gets low on funds Opal will automatically top up your card with $10 from your account.
Don’t get caught like the people in the image below, standing in line at an OPAL top-up machine waiting to top up their cards. I’ve seen these machines with long lines of people – especially in peak hour at places like Town Hall and Wynyard stations. And when you need to top up, the line will most certainly be a kilometre long. Your time in Sydney is too precious to waste standing in line.
If this is your one and only trip to Sydney, don’t worry, as, after a certain amount of time, any unused money will be refunded back to your credit or debit card. The whole system works very efficiently. I have my Opal card to automatically recharge $10.00
More Opal top up info at Opal Card top up.