Types of road signs

There are four major types of road signs used by visitors to find tourist attractions and facilities in Australia. They are:

  1. direction signs (white on green)
  2. tourist attraction signs (white on brown)
  3. services signs (white on blue)
  4. community facility signs (white on blue).

Direction road signs

Example of a directional road sign - white text on green

Direction signs are distinctive in their use of white lettering on a green background. They provide directions to towns and cities and particular locations, and most include reference to a route numbering system or road name. They are the primary means of directional signing for visitors and are generally used in conjunction with maps. They reassure motorists that they are travelling in the desired direction, and facilitate traffic movement in the safest and most direct way.

Tourist attraction signs

Example of a tourist attraction sign - white text on brown

Tourist attraction signs use white lettering on a brown background. They indicate features and tourist attractions of significant recreation and cultural interest, and may make use of tourist attraction symbols.

Tourist attraction signs include:

  • commercial/non-commercial tourist operations
  • national parks
  • natural features
  • conservation parks/botanic gardens
  • wineries catering for tourists
  • historic sites/buildings/towns
  • scenic lookouts
  • tourist drives and trails.

Tourist attraction signs signal commercial and non-commercial tourist establishments and features of tourist interest that meet the eligibility criteria. In order to qualify for tourist signing, the core business must be tourism-based, with a strong commitment to servicing visitors. Road authorities in partnership with State Tourism Organisations establish the criteria that determine whether a business qualifies for tourist attraction signing.

Read the Guidelines: Tourism signs eligibility criteria for attractions

Services signs

Example of a services sign - white text on blue

Service signs, with white lettering on a blue background, direct motorists to facilities and services that may benefit them. With the exception of some accommodation facilities, signing to other services uses Australian Standards symbols. Service signs are used for:

  • accommodation facilities
  • caravan and camping parks/areas
  • visitor information centres
  • tourist information bays
  • visitor radio services
  • service stations
  • public toilets
  • rest areas
  • parking areas.

Service signs direct the travelling public to essential and desirable facilities and service businesses (as endorsed by road authorities, often in consultation with tourism managers).

Review the National tourism symbols for services signing

Community facilities signs

Example of a community faciliites sign - white text on blue

Community facility signing (white on blue) generally denotes facilities most commonly used by the community. Those facilities may be used by visitors and, in some cases, attract visitors in their own right.

These include:

  • arts centres
  • churches
  • recreation centres
  • golf courses
  • swimming pools
  • airports/aerodromes.

Review National Tourism Symbols explained