One way vs return fares

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Des1801

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May 6, 2014
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Hi all, first post here so apologies if this has been covered before.

why is the price of flights so different depending on if you search one way or return ? For example, I want to go to the USA next year. I want the trip to take in LA, Hawaii and Vegas. Plan was originally to fly home (Melbourne) from Honolulu but given the shopping I plan on doing I will need a large baggage allowance for the flight home. As JQ only offer 30kg, and Hawaiian are v expensive, I think I may go to hawaii first (flying JQ) and return from LAX on VA premium economy (2 x 32kg bags).

However, if I search MEL-LAX return the homeward leg is approx $1400. If I search LAX-MEL one way the cost is showing as over $5000 for the same date and flights ? What is going on here ???

thanks in advance

edit - sorry this should be in the questions forum
 
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