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Old 02-27-2012, 06:52 AM
 
Location: Houston, Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpolyglot View Post
Mostly because I dread a 14-hour flight to Sydney from LA, or 15-hour flight to Melbourne. Also, there's a break in flying to South America at MIA. I always break up the Europe flight with an East Coast change of planes, rather than flying the direct 12-hour polar route from the West Coast.
Uh, there's Hawaii right smack dab in the middle of the Pacific where you can stop off for a few hours/days if you can't stomach doing the whole US-Oz flight at one time. And they have some pretty good beaches there too. But then you might get hit on the head by a falling coconut!
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Old 02-27-2012, 09:21 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrueDat View Post
Uh, there's Hawaii right smack dab in the middle of the Pacific where you can stop off for a few hours/days if you can't stomach doing the whole US-Oz flight at one time. And they have some pretty good beaches there too. But then you might get hit on the head by a falling coconut!
When I was a kid in LA, all of the AUS flights used to stop on Honolulu. With the advent of the 747-400 and now the AB 380, all the LAX flights on United, Air New Zealand and Qantas are non-stop. You can do Air Canada from Vancouver with a stop in Honolulu, at least last time I checked. Not afraid of coconuts, they don't have teeth. (The shark attacks in Hawaii tend to be perpetrated by tiger sharks, FWIW).
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Old 02-27-2012, 09:54 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpolyglot View Post
When I was a kid in LA, all of the AUS flights used to stop on Honolulu. With the advent of the 747-400 and now the AB 380, all the LAX flights on United, Air New Zealand and Qantas are non-stop. You can do Air Canada from Vancouver with a stop in Honolulu, at least last time I checked. Not afraid of coconuts, they don't have teeth. (The shark attacks in Hawaii tend to be perpetrated by tiger sharks, FWIW).
I don't know why they don't make stopovers in Hawaii from Sydney or Brisbane easier/more affordable. I enquired about doing so but they said it would cost me a bunch.
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Old 02-27-2012, 09:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edu983 View Post
Australians have a superior standard of living/quality of life, there is no comparison.
All depends on how you qualify "living/quality". If it involves money, then America offers more if you're middle class and up. Blue collar workers have a higher minimum wage, better health care, education and social security in Australia.

Most things cost significantly more in Australia and taxes are higher. Cars and housing for example are 2-3 more expensive.

I can get a 30 year FIXED loan here in the USA @ 3.875%, but in Australia you can't lock in for more than 5 years and the interest rate is 6-7% for a 30 year loan. A $400K house in the USA would cost $800K to a million in Australia in the current market conditions.

Americans also enjoy more freedoms IMHO, but that can be a good or bad thing depending on what side of the fence you're on.

As for beaches, I grew up on the Gold Coast and have lived at Bondi, but I have not been to CA beaches. IIRC there is a fundamental difference in the surf. Oz is a wind driven swell and Ca is tidal or something like that - don't quote me.

I have never seen a Shark when out surfing in Oz, but I have seen a mountain lion and lots of bears and surprised a few rattlers when mountain biking.

IME Australians "get" America due to all the American media they are exposed to. American's don't get much Oz media and have difficulty with the culture and accents.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:03 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
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Laid back? Well you can be as laid-back as you want in either...

I've been to beaches all around Australia (literally) and have visited the US once. We went to Santa Monica Beach, Long Beach, and one in San Diego, I forgot the name (we went on a rollercoaster there) which is a limited sample to compare to the at least hundred or so beaches I've at least visited and dipped my toes in, if not more, in our land girt by sea.

California's beach 'scene' is more developed, with more development...Bondi isn't really 'laid-back' by Aussie standards because it's so urban...most people on the beach will be tourists and it gets way too packed. For Sydney I prefer the Northern beaches or the NP's to places like Bondi or Cronulla.

Typically Australian beaches are less developed and have a more casual feel. They can roughly be divided into 'urban' ones and more remote ones. Urban ones like Cottesloe sometimes have a strip with some old hotels, cafes, surf shops, restaurants, pubs.etc, while some of the more remote ones will have a lot fewer people but obviously a lack of facilities. Some ubiquitous things about the beach in Oz include Norfolk pines (look like Christmas trees), seagulls and fish'n'chips.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:05 AM
 
14,752 posts, read 27,513,384 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I don't know why they don't make stopovers in Hawaii from Sydney or Brisbane easier/more affordable. I enquired about doing so but they said it would cost me a bunch.
I don't know either. It's probably because you are deliberately making multiple segments out of what is marketed as a non-stop run. I know that 8 hours on a plane is my limit....like New York to Rome, or Miami to Buenos Aires. The longest flight I've ever taken is Munich to San Francisco, about 12 hours, and I said "no more."

Look for airlines that still "take a break" in Hawaii. It won't be one of the "majors."
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I don't know why they don't make stopovers in Hawaii from Sydney or Brisbane easier/more affordable. I enquired about doing so but they said it would cost me a bunch.
Because no one wants to stop over in Hawaii. If you were really set on it then you could just buy a domestic ticket to Hawaii with a US carrier then buy a SYD/BNE-HNL return...
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Old 02-27-2012, 06:31 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCC_1 View Post
Because no one wants to stop over in Hawaii. If you were really set on it then you could just buy a domestic ticket to Hawaii with a US carrier then buy a SYD/BNE-HNL return...
No one? I'd been wanting to go to Hawaii almost as long as I'd wanted to go to the mainland, and doing that would have hiked up the cost significantly. It didn't really have a lot of time to spare anyway, and if I'd spent say 5 nights in Hawaii it would take away time on the mainland. As they say there's always another time.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
No one? I'd been wanting to go to Hawaii almost as long as I'd wanted to go to the mainland, and doing that would have hiked up the cost significantly. It didn't really have a lot of time to spare anyway, and if I'd spent say 5 nights in Hawaii it would take away time on the mainland. As they say there's always another time.
If there was a market for it then someone would be flying it.

I just had a quick look, J* return SYD-HNL was $1,100 and United is pricing HNL-LAX return for $450. $1,550 isn't that unreasonable. That was with 30 seconds worth of searching, I'm sure you could probably find better.

For an extra $1,000 you could probably get a circle pacific fare ex-AKL which will get you to the East Coast and back through Asia.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:41 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 43,116,816 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCC_1 View Post
If there was a market for it then someone would be flying it.

I just had a quick look, J* return SYD-HNL was $1,100 and United is pricing HNL-LAX return for $450. $1,550 isn't that unreasonable. That was with 30 seconds worth of searching, I'm sure you could probably find better.

For an extra $1,000 you could probably get a circle pacific fare ex-AKL which will get you to the East Coast and back through Asia.
Actually when I booked my flight I thought I only had 3 1/2 weeks...it turns out circumstances changed (I quit my job, or rather couldn't continue) and that might've been a possibility. I do see quite a few deals to Hawaii nowadays, but I don't think Qantas flies direct to Honolulu. I'd have to go with United probably or maybe Air NZ?
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