Jetskiing on the Gold Coast

Imagine the thrill of jetskiing across the Gold Coast waterways, or powering to the crest of a wave... the buzz you'll get from doing figure-eights and 'dropping donuts' in a floating carpark as big as the ocean!

There's a wide range of personal watercraft to choose from - single or double jetskis which operate at speeds of up to 70kph, or the newer waverunners which can comfortably accommodate 2-3 people.

No prior experience is necessary, as safety briefings are provided, together with any necessary safety equipment.

And you don’t need a licence to operate one of these craft - however, you must be at least 15-16 years of age to ride individually.

Minimum age requirements for jetskiing on the Gold Coast may vary slightly across tour operators, so if you have children aged less than 10 years who would like to ride as a passenger with an adult, check with your tour operator prior to booking.

All jetskiing operators on the Gold Coast are now legally required to provide a set course for these watercraft, for safety and noise considerations, so you’ll need to stay within defined boundaries. Learn to Jetski, Gold Coast, Queensland TQ

However, most riders will find the course areas to be of a sufficient large size to allow freedom to explore the area and try out some different maneuvers.

If you wish to extend your fun, spread your wings and explore further afield, join a jetski safari tour, which will take you on an adventure exploring Sanctuary Cove or some of the islands just off the Gold Coast.

The length and times of these tours varies, although the round trip is generally between 40-80 km. Lead by an experienced guide, tour numbers are limited, and advance bookings are required.

On the tour, you'll have an opportunity to check out mangrove swamps and island beaches, as you wend your way through the tidal passages of the many small islands and sand bars between the North & South Stradbroke Islands - Crusoe Island, Eden Island, and Stingray Island, to name just a few.

And if time allows, the jetskiing safari group may stop off at a pristine island beach to allow riders to cool down with a refreshing ocean dip, before returning home.

Whichever Gold Coast jetski experience you choose will create a fun morning or afternoon. I'll leave you with a warning that, as some tour operators will tell you, jetskiing is addictive! Enjoy.

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Jetski Safety Tips

  • All riders must wear personal flotation devices (lifejackets).
  • Avoid unpredictable, freestyle riding, such as changing directions suddenly and at various speeds, or surfing over waves or boat swells within 30m of other jet skis, or within 60m of swimmers or boats.
  • Ensure you know the roll-over procedures and how to re-board the jet ski in case you fall off. If you're a beginner, it's advisable to practice a few times in order to avoid panic if you roll-over while out to sea.
  • Stay alert and watch continuously for swimmers, divers, other boats and stationary objects such as navigational buoys.
  • Riders must stay at least 400m from patrolled beaches - this 400m boundary extends along the beach and out to sea.
  • Do not speed, and where necessary, adjust speed appropriately to conditions. Jetskis must slow to under 6 knots (equivalent to a brisk walking pace) in harbours/marinas, or within 60m of persons in the water.
  • Do not operate a craft if you're under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Do not overestimate your abilities - take your time to familiarise yourself with the craft, and understand all the features.

Jetski hire costs (with between 1-3 people onboard) start from:
15 mins: $45-$50
30 mins: $70-$80
60 mins: $130-150

Safari tour prices are ~$180 per jetski for the 1 hour tour, or ~$300 per jetski for the 2.5 hour tour. 2 people may share the jetski, and split the cost.
Toilet facilities are generally located in nearby park or marina, so take a rest-stop before climbing aboard your jetski.
Wet Weather
Not suitable in heavy rain or wind.
Operating Hours
All year round, in daylight hours.
Minimum hire is generally around 15 mins; tours extend to 2-3 hours.
Handy Hints
- You don't need a motor vehicle driving licence.
- There are lots of pricing packages on offer, so if you're planning to do two or more activities (choosing from jetskiing, parasailing, or a speedboat ride), check with tour operators for best offer.
- Some tour operators provide wetsuits in winter months, at no extra cost.
- Wear swimmers, sunscreen and sunglasses, and bring a cap/hat that won’t blow off your head. Also, bring a towel and drinking water.
How To Get There
Most tour operators are located on the Broadwater (Main Beach through to Labrador). Hotel pick-ups from and drop-offs to your Gold Coast accommodation may be available.
Further Info
Refer tour operator table at end of article.

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