Traffic on the West Gate Freeway is expected to remain for the rest of the week as holiday goers are left in kilometres of gridlock.

Four of the five outbound lanes of the West Gate Bridge are undergoing annual maintenance including the replacement of waterproof membranes and resurfacing.

A department spokeswoman said the bumper-to-bumper traffic affected anyone driving city-bound on the Monash Freeway, or trying to use the Bolte Bridge en route to the Tullamarine Freeway and airport.

“It’s looking gridlocked out of the Domain Tunnel… it’s a very slow run,” she said. “It’s not worth your while at the moment.”

Delays are expected to be just as bad and could even blow out to 1½ hours during the next week of roadworks, which started on Monday night and will continue until 5am on January 4.

Best ways to avoid the traffic if you’re heading to:

The Airport:

Travel north and use Mount Alexander Road, Brunswick Road or Bell Street to access the Tullamarine Freeway

Surf Coast and western Victoria:

Divert north to Alexandra Parade, Racecourse Road and Geelong Road to the Princes Freeway, or take Ballarat Road to the Western Freeway.

Northern suburbs to the west:

M80 Ring Road, or follow signed detour through Footscray on Geelong Road and Millers Road

East or southern suburbs to west:

Take Punt Road or Eastern Freeway around the CBD to Alexandra Parade, then follow signed detour along Geelong Road and Millers Road.

The CBD:

Take public transport!!