How best to book a trip from Brisbane to Los Angeles with a combination of points and Air NZ credit?

Hi there! Looking for some advice on the best way to proceed.
I have almost $1800 in credit with Air New Zealand. I also have 80k Velocity points and approx 350k Altitude points.
I am looking to book to Bris to LA return for the best deal possible. Any recommendations on the best way to approach it with the 3 different variables at play?

Hi and welcome,

There are options but would you be able to clarify some additional info?

  • how many passengers are on the trip?
  • which class cabin are you primarily thinking of travelling in?

Hi Warren - 2 pax - my wife and I.

Business would be the preference but Premium Economy perhaps


Points + pay (or its equivalent) is generally bad value for points. E.g. 100k Qantas/Velocity points get you circa $600 savings. I’d generally advise people to avoid points + pay if at all possible. Much better value if you can get award seats to work (especially in premium cabin).

By my calculation, you have about 200k Velocity points, which is enough for 2 one way award seats for the distance between Brisbane and Los Angeles in business class or just short of 3 premium economy seats. I.e. you and partner will need 4 seats to cover return trip.

You could:

  1. Try locating any award flights between Brisbane - LAX/SFO. Virgin Australia doesn’t fly long haul anymore so United Airlines via Sydney may be the only straight forward option via Velocity points. Award seats are generally on high demand across the Pacific. I think some airlines open up unsold seats closer to departure date (1-2 weeks). Not great for planners but that’s the state of things so we gotta work with what we have got.

  2. Use Air NZ credit for one passenger or to position both of you to SYD. Or to use the credit in another trip if not expiring so soon.

  3. Bite the bullet and use credit + cash

  4. Bite the bullet and use credit + points, which wouldn’t get you very far. Might be able to do it for 1 passenger and you can fund the other by cash.

Hope that is of some help to you.

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