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Thread: Flights to NZ - Best Routes?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Wellington
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    35

    Default Flights to NZ - Best Routes?

    Hi,

    I'm flying out to NZ in September and my wife and young son will follow on shortly after. Any suggestions on the best way for my wife to travel by herself, with some large cases and a 2 1/2 year old in tow? Is Singapore better then LA? Do bags need to be offloaded during stop-over or do you remain on the plane during refueling?

    Also, any recommended airlines for the trip? Air New Zealand look to be the most competive on price but are they a good airline to travel with?

    Many Thanks,

    Steve (and Fiona & Alex)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2005
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    Bourmemouth, UK
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    Singapore Airlines are BRILLIANT, and the airport there is amazing, so I would highly recommend that route. No, you don't have to unload bags, assuming you're flying all the way with one airline.

    Never flown Air NZ, but I've heard they're OK. LA had a reputation for being quite a hassly place to change planes but I think the situation is improving, especially if you've got young children - they may let you go to the front of the queues etc. It's just that Singapore was better than OK, in my view. We only had a couple of hours, but we booked a hotel room at the airport and had a shower and a rest. There's a swimming pool too, if you've got more time.

    I'm sure those who have flown via LA will know more about the current situation there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Australia
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    The bags are checked all the way through to final destination, so no collecting luggage anymore. Air NZ is a great airline to travel on - we fly with them every time.

    People with kids seem to prefer going via the Far East.

    I prefer LA as you get a much higher luggage allowance (46kg as opposed to 20kg per person), and they're steadily improving the transit experience all the time. You basically have to go through the US Immigration process (those with children are prioritised to the front of the queue), then wait in a lounge with drinks and snacks provided.

    If you like Chinese food the HK root is fine, as at least one choice is oriental in character on the Air NZ flights, but even I draw the line at the Chinese style breakfast. For that reason too the LA root is better.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2007
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    Wellington
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    Thanks all for your replies.

    Looks like whichever airline we chose the bags will remain onboard so no collect and check-in to go through. Costs look comparable between Singapore and New Zealand airlines, although Air New Zealand do offer a Premium Economy seat for extra legroom (helpful when you're 6' 1").

    Thanks again,

    Steve (and Fiona & Alex)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Suffolk, UK
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    See this thread:

    http://www.enz.org/forum/showthread....apore+Airlines


    I've been reading this forum for months now and Singapore Air come up again and again as being great with kids - they seem to just go to that extra effort.

    I've decided that I definitely want to fly with them with my 4 - being miserable is pretty infectious!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Christchurch, NZ
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    Where in NZ are you flying to ?. Only a couple of airlines fly direct into Christchurch (from memory - Singapore and Emirates), so with anyone else, you would need to change at Auckland and then take an internal flight.

    Just thinking about minimising the no of changes/stops..... Less of an issue if its Wellington or Auckland.

  7. #7
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    Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by dookieusm View Post
    Thanks all for your replies.

    Looks like whichever airline we chose the bags will remain onboard so no collect and check-in to go through. Costs look comparable between Singapore and New Zealand airlines, although Air New Zealand do offer a Premium Economy seat for extra legroom (helpful when you're 6' 1").

    Thanks again,

    Steve (and Fiona & Alex)
    Air NZ offer very good leg room in their Pacific Economy anyway, so save the money. I'm 6'4" and have no problems. The 747s fly both the HK and LA routes now (the 777s that were flying the LA route for a while had slightly less leg room but I still had no problem).

  8. #8
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    Aug 2006
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    Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pip View Post
    Where in NZ are you flying to ?. Only a couple of airlines fly direct into Christchurch (from memory - Singapore and Emirates), so with anyone else, you would need to change at Auckland and then take an internal flight.

    Just thinking about minimising the no of changes/stops..... Less of an issue if its Wellington or Auckland.
    Last year when we changed at Auckland and flew direct to Christchurch we had to collect luggage, then check it in at the internal transfer desk and then make our way to the Domestic terminal. In June we stayed in Auckland for a few days but I noticed that Christchurch bound flyers were being directed to a dedicated gate as soon as we left the aircraft so procedures have changed, but I'm not sure what to!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    Auckland, from Edinburgh
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    The LA route is very good for luggage allowance, but it's two very long stages - and I'm just fed up with all the hassle at LA. Last time I flew out here, I flew straight from Edinburgh to Frankfurt with Lufthansa, onto HK (stopped for a few nights) then HK to AKL (can't remember who with, sorry). If you're transiting through Heathrow - a route going via Frankfurt is well worth looking at as it saves about three or fours hours and breaks up the Asia chunk nicely.

    If you're flying straight from Heathrow or Gatwick and not too bothered about the luggage allowance, I'd go via Singapore. It's one of the best airports in the world, you can go for a swim or take a tour of the city - all free of charge. With kids in tow, i'm sure you can find a play area to keep them occupied in Changi.

    Dougie

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Browns Bay, Auckland
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    I flew with Emirates from Heathrow via Dubai and it was fine. One word of warning though - I took a one-night stopover in Dubai (highly recommended) so I had to get my bags and re-check in the following day. Collecting the bags took ages (had to wait about an hour for them to appear on the carousel) and then checking in the following morning was a nightmare - a HUGE queue. Other than that Dubai airport is fine - the biggest duty-free shop I've ever seen. Emirates staff were very friendly too.

    By the way, www.seatguru.com is a good way of checking out the legroom and seat layout on the various aircraft the different airlines use.

    Martin

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