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MEL-LAX-ATL-SDF-JKF Routing/Comfort/Airline Options

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flying_duck

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Hi All,

We have finally agreed to do a (big for us) US trip in April. April is the only time we can fly. Once I know the route/airline I was going to ask in the other forum for reward on prices, dates, tactics etc. But right now, I can't even decide which airline to go. Hence a few questions - the cities and timeframes are important, the order of them or how we get there is less so. I am Gold VFF travelling with hubby (Red).

ATL
1 Night

NYC
2 Nights

SDF
7 nights (family)

Comfort
I noticed the AirNZ skybeds (with the three seats in economy) and also their PE product looks really good - although expensive (around 4K to lax). We want to fly Virgin or a partner airline. Would you fly one in J and one in Y on Virgin or one in PE and one in Y on AirNZ? Would this work? Do staff get antsy about swapsies halfway to LA? Is the layover in Auckland worth it or a hassle? Also, I would expect international lounges would accept me as VFF gold and my husband as my guest? Or is it only one of us allowed in?

Points
Would I purchase a y+ on VA and points upgrade to business? What would this cost in points each way (at a guess)? Is this always available or is this a bid process? Is this also an option on Virgin partners or not? What points would I earn on AirNZ and SC as well - would they be the same as VA?

Internal US Flights
Do you think I would be better off booking as much USA travel as I can from here, i.e as part of my itinerary, or would I be better buying it separately from a US website? In either case, are US internal flights cheaper one way or return?

Sorry, lots of questions. I haven't done a big flight in a while and certainly not planned anything this intricate for myself before.

I really appreciate any help anyone can give on this topic. Thank you!!
 
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MEL_Traveller

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for internal USA flights use a tool like googleflights.com

It will give you the range of carriers, and the lowest fares on a range of dates. If the American Airlines website is anything to go by, the Aussie version of the site is often much (much) more expensive than buying through the US equivalent site.

however a careful choice of carrier to the USA will help cut down some of the internal flights. For example United will take you to LAX and on to Atlanta. And then back home from JKF. You'd only need the ATL-SDF-JFK flights (SDF has non-stops to both of those now I think).

UA has Economy plus seating, and their 777s from SYD and 787 from MEL have IFE and good reliability. Economy plus can be purchased for something just over $100 per transpacific sector (might be a little more than that). Gives you an extra 5 inches of room. That might be enough for a non-stop flight (vs a flight where you have to transfer via AKL etc).
 

flying_duck

Member
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May 5, 2014
Messages
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Thank you for answering MEL_Traveller, as it turns out, you are very helpful, I am a complete idiot. I didn't mean Star Alliance. I meant VA or a VA partner airline. Wish VA still flew MEL-LAX direct :(
 
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