Australians are spoilt for choice when flying to the United States! There are currently five airlines with direct trans-Pacific flights, and a plethora of other airlines offering one-stop connections. Air New Zealand, Fiji Airways, Hawaiian Airlines and countless Asian carriers all offer convenient one-stop flights to the USA through their respective hubs.

Air New Zealand offers a wide range of convenient connections. Flights to Los Angeles, San Francisco and Houston, as well as Vancouver and Buenos Aires, are available from most Australian cities with just one stop in Auckland.

One member recently flew to Los Angeles in Air New Zealand’s Business class. Overall, they were impressed with the Kiwi service.

The trip got off to a flying start with a short Boeing 767 flight across the Tasman to Auckland. After arriving in Auckland, a visit to the Air NZ lounge was in order. The Auckland lounge is the airline’s new flagship airport lounge. Although our member found the food options lacking, the bar was well-stocked and the lounge itself is a stylish and modern space. Facilities include day beds where weary travellers can catch up on some much-needed rest.

As usual there was some food, however it did not seem well stocked at the time I was there with limited choices and nothing too appealing. The drinks side of things was much more interesting with another manned bar and coffee station, as well as self-service. There was also a TV room, kids room and a slightly odd indoor-outdoor area.

Air New Zealand uses Boeing 777 aircraft on its trans-Pacific flights. These aircraft feature lie-flat beds with direct aisle access in Business class. Our member found their seat spacious and comfortable. And all of the usual Business class suspects – including amenity kits, blankets, pillows and a mattress topper – were provided.

For those just behind the Business class curtain, the Kiwi national carrier offers an innovative Premium Economy product on its Boeing 777 fleet. Featuring what the airline calls the “Spaceseat”, these seats offer arguably the most space and privacy of any Premium Economy seat on any airline.

There are many different ways to fly to the United States. But having tried multiple other airlines in the past, our member was happy with the Air New Zealand experience.

I had done the Sydney to Los Angeles trip three times in three years now with the other two trips being in Korean Air business and Virgin Australia premium economy. This Air New Zealand trip was definitely the best out of the three with better flight timing than Korean and surely a better seat than Virgin Australia business class with 2-3-2? I was definitely not put off by the old 767 flight to Auckland and in my opinion the Air NZ 777 is certainly a comfortable way to get to America.

Unfortunately, Air New Zealand releases almost no premium cabin award availability. So it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to secure a seat on these flights using your frequent flyer points. But the airline does from time to time offer competitive airfares in all classes to entice flyers onto the indirect route via Auckland.

View the full trip report HERE.


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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]