MEL-CHC not many options

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chanpreet

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HI there

We are planning a family holiday to Christchurch in August. I have been a Qantas WP for a few years now.

When I looking at the flight availability, I was shocked to find out that Qantas does not have a MEL<->CHC service. I would have thought this to be a popular sector. My only option is Jetstar which leaves Mel at 11:45 pm and reaches at 3:00 AM AEST/5:00AM local time (yikes) . Not convenient when travelling with kids, but I guess FLounge will help assuming they are open at that time.

My other option is to go with Virgin which leaves in the evening around 630 and gets in before midnight local time. Good timing but no status with them.

Do you have any good route recommendations with QF/EK say via Sydney or AKL which will not be too bad with the days , gives us some time in a nice lounge and is during the day?

Thanks
 

moa999

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Type Flights from xx_ TO yyy into Google,.


For example SYD to CHC
8:50 am

1:55 pm
7ElKGYgngY1xBObATbQDEMoWfcAcRM5mQmGWYDYFF0cANKwyQEq5lh AAAAAElFTkSuQmCC
Jetstar 151
S
-
T
-
T
-
-
SYD-CHC
9:15 am

2:20 pm
Nzxy0aZGYhQSBZNN9B 4rAE1JFtBiy7gezgWQFtHM1hGLuKnUy7wVd 67Md7tn6v3N3Hv393MCLyvRZxYpMG4AAAAASUVORK5CYII=
Emirates 418
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
SYD-CHC
9:30 am

2:30 pm
f8GRvHjft7cOhKl6YbrWhGB1rETqLd04a0HzCq1EmNx3TmORVXvrF6qMGTNtBp18ut5kMCzIIKptDze0RRdtOVfqR0SEBKBRayoZ1 01xQB8au7ypevaCGpIAfcifilgydbzAAAAAASUVORK5CYII=
Air New Zealand 884
-
-
-
W
T
-
S
SYD-CHC
6:35 pm

11:35 pm
f8GRvHjft7cOhKl6YbrWhGB1rETqLd04a0HzCq1EmNx3TmORVXvrF6qMGTNtBp18ut5kMCzIIKptDze0RRdtOVfqR0SEBKBRayoZ1 01xQB8au7ypevaCGpIAfcifilgydbzAAAAAASUVORK5CYII=
Air New Zealand 888
S
M
-
W
-
F
-
SYD-CHC
6:45 pm

11:50 pm
jH6x6I7kE7AAAAAElFTkSuQmCC
Qantas 139
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
SYD-CHC
7:20 pm

12:30 am+1
7wAuY4Gsm2JK9VAAAAAElFTkSuQmCC
Virgin Australia 134
-
M
-
-
T
F
-
SYD-CHC
7:40 pm

12:45 am+1
7ElKGYgngY1xBObATbQDEMoWfcAcRM5mQmGWYDYFF0cANKwyQEq5lh AAAAAElFTkSuQmCC
Jetstar 151
-
M
-
W
-
F
S
SYD-CHC



With a 6am MEL departure could probably connect to EK418, or later in the day and more F Lounge time for the later QF139 flight
 

ReLoad

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Speaking from experience, the stupid o'clock JQ service is great if you can stomach the timings as it's a simple flight and all you do is sleep, but I much prefer the EK service ex Syd. Particularly as EK J beats QFs 737 J by a mile! (Remember no F lounge on the JQ either!)

The only issue is as you get into CHC mid afternoon it's a bit of a waste of a day.

Still, the fares including the mel/Syd leg have been on sale a fair bit and always managed to get some good deals in advance.

You even get a shot at the EK F upgrade fairy :) (she is kind and benevolent)
 

dajop

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Other alternatives may include travelling via other NZ ports (such as Queenstown, Wellington & Auckland... in distance order).
 

madrooster

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The MEL F lounge should be open until reasonably close to the MEL-CHC JQ flight given QF9 moves to ~10pm in July.
 

Mwenenzi

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You are better to buy MEL-CHC and then CHC-MEL seperately. CHC-MEL is usually cheaper than as the return of ticket bought in Australia.

Air NZ has a flight most days MEL-CHC at 09:20 - 14:40. VA and Air NZ codeshare.
Or QF171 MEL-WLG at 09:45 - 15:25 and then Air NZ. Easier to transfer than AKL or SYD.
Going via SYD adds a lot of time and flights not well coordinated. QF and EK codeshare.
For me Air NZ non stop flight is the best schedule.

For the return JQ166 CHC MEL 20:35 - 22:20 works for me. The Mainia lounge is open. At times I have been the only person in the lounge. Some days VA/NZ have a late afternoon flight.
 
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AustraliaPoochie

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On a side note, for domestic bookings within NZ, (if you are considering taking NZ/VA's flight MEL to AKL, and then NZ domestic flights, I would book JQ NZ domestic, and pay that little bit extra to earn QFF points and SC.
I have one NZ domestic flight, in S class, and it says in the VA blurb, that S class NZ domestic flights fare bucket do not earn Velocity points.
I have learnt a lesson, to not book NZ domestic from now on, and just fly JQ NZ domestic (in the future if I were to fly within NZ), and earn QFF and SC.
 
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chanpreet

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Oct 11, 2012
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Thanks everybody for their input.

QF171 MEL->WLG and then WLG->CHC domestic via AIRNZ or JQ makes the ticket quite expensive for the dates I am looking for. doesn't justify the reason to fly QF. Might suck it up and book AIR NZ 9:25am or VA100 in the evening and JQ on the way back.
 

TomVexille

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This is pretty much the reason I have only flown QF a couple times in the last 6 years.
 

AustraliaPoochie

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OP, Maybe start putting all your flight business to Airpoints or Velocity.
Only reason I now will pay for QP is because its better lunch and dindin arvo times is the meals.
VA lounge seems all day breakfast.
Koru must be better than VA lounge eh?
Anyways, that's it for me on this.
 
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