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Qantas, Virgin Australia, and United are offering cheap roundtrip flights between San Francisco/Los Angeles and Australia/New Zealand. Roundtrips to New Zealand are a bit cheaper than those to Australia (lowest price to Australia = $656). Most flights are non-stop. Travel dates are available in May and August through November of this year.


  1. When are the cheap fares?
  2. Mileage Earning
  3. Baggage Allowance

$619 Roundtrip from Los Angeles/San Francisco to New Zealand,  $656 Roundtrip From Los Angeles/San Francisco to Australia

The easiest way to see the cheap fares is on Google Flights. Available travel dates for the low prices are in May and August through November.

I brought up the following graph of roundtrip prices between Los Angeles and Auckland on Google Flights by clicking the Flexible dates tab.

To drop the price to $619, you’ll have to book through Momondo.

Beware that booking through these types of third party sites invites potentially worse customer service in case of needing a change or cancellation, however I do see less chance of there being issues with these flights as most are non-stop. I had a friend who recently booked a cheap ticket through Monomondo and they screwed him over when his first leg was delayed, providing no help re-booking him on a new connection. Just don’t expect much in the way of customer service.

If you want the $619 price, I’d search first on Google Flights and look for a roundtrip priced at $702. The same flight should be about $619 on Monomondo.

The west coast to Sydney flights are around $650 on Monomondo…

…and around $725 on Google flights.

Mileage Earning

Here’s how the process of crediting to a partner works.

If you book a United flight, read Where to Credit Butt in Seat Miles: Flying United Airlines to learn more about which Star Alliance airline is the most advantageous to credit your miles to.

If you book a Qantas flight (for the sake of example, let’s say the Qantas flight above), let’s assume you credit your miles to American Airlines. The ticket is classified as Fare Class O (I found that information on ITA Matrix).

Assuming you have no status, you’ll earn 5 American Airlines miles per dollar spent. For this ticket that means you’ll earn 3,095 redeemable miles ($619 x 5).

You’ll also earn 1 Elite Qualifying Segment, $507 Elite Qualifying Dollars (ticket price less government imposed taxes and fees, which I also found on ITA Matrix), and 13,008 Elite Qualifying Miles as that is the distance flying Los Angeles > Auckland > Los Angeles.

I’ll let you figure out the mileage earning if you choose a Virgin Australia flight. I assume you would credit your miles to Delta.

Baggage Allowance

If you book a United flight, the fare class is G, not basic economy, so you’ll get two checked bags up to 50 lbs each for free, as well as free carry-on, and a free personal item.

If you book a Qantas flight, you get a free personal item, free carry on, and one free checked bag up to 50 pounds each included in the ticket price.

If you book a Virgin Australia flight, you get a free personal item, free carry on, and one free checked bag up to 50 pounds each included in the ticket price.

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Hat Tip View from the Wing

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