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AirNZ Via Lax

West Yorkshire
posts: 11
AirNZ Via Lax

I was looking at booking a flight from Heathrow to Christchurch Via LAX but have heard some bad reviews about the transitting through this airport. Does anyone have any very recent experiences as I had heard rumours they were trying to improve it.

The reason I was looking at this route as apposed to HKG was I was thinking of booking Premium Economy or Skycouch to have more room on the flight and this is the only route with these seats.

Any very recent experiencs or tips welcome.


Liverpool, UK
posts: 10,324
reviews: 24
1. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

It looks like the route is flight NZ0001 from LHR to Auckland via LA and then a connecting flight from Auckland to Christchurch.

If these are your flights it seems from the AirNZ website that they have good arrangements in place with an escort service through the transit procedure and a dedicated transit area with refreshments.


Auckland Region...
posts: 614
reviews: 45
2. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Hi Gillian This is the route I always take. It is a direct flight with a refuelling stop at LA. I like to get to my destination as quickly as possible.

You go through immigration very quickly and pleasantly (this is the bit that has improved the most over the years) into a rather dull transit area, no showers but clean toilets and wash basins. There is seating and plenty of space to stretch out.

Air NZ supply hot and cold drinks, cookies, chocolate and some fruit while you wait.

I intend to book this flight again for September in a PE spaceseat.

West Yorkshire
posts: 11
3. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Hi Toddy04

Thanks for your reply, you make it sound better than a lot of reviews I've heard with nightmare queue's which is what I was worried about and the time getting on and off the plane but I guess everyone on the plane will be getting back on the same one as you said it is a straight flight with just a stop to refuel so there is no worries abotu missing flights etc!

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
posts: 44,038
reviews: 60
4. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Just a reminder that since you DO go through immigration at LAX you need an ESTA in place before the flight.

Surrey England
posts: 2,052
reviews: 61
5. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Hi Jillian,

It's really no big deal,all very straight forward.If you are in Business Premier you will be off the plane first and have a separate transit area to sit in.I guess Premium economy passengers are off next so would follow BP passengers.If you were to be one of the last economy passengers off the plane you may have to queue a while as my son did.By the time he got to the transit lounge it was almost time to reboard.

It gives you a chance to stretch your legs and you only take your hand luggage with you and you are straight back in the same seat.

The ladies loos can get a bit busy though as many women take the chance to freshen up before the next long haul.

Auckland Region...
posts: 614
reviews: 45
6. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Hello again Jillian.

I have just booked my PE flights on Air NZ. They have just released cheap companion fares.


I am not sure if it will work for your dates but it's worth a look.

Also responding to your comment that "everyone on the plane will be getting off and on again" In fact a number of pax just use this flight for one of the legs. While you're waiting in LA they do board other customers who haven't been on the first flight. You do usually get to keep your original seat though.

Edited: 12:38 am, April 10, 2013
Destination Expert
for Thirassia, Fira
posts: 5,668
reviews: 10
7. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

Also remember that if you grab a piece of fruit at the LAX lounge and put it in your bag, please either eat it on board, discard it when you arrive in one of the amnesty bins or declare it on your biosecurity card (and dispose of it). New Zealand has very strict regulations about fruit and if its in your possession and not declared, then you'll be liable to be fined, which would be a shame at the beginning of a vacation.


If you have any questions about what to declare, just ask one of the officers you'll see in the airport - they're pretty friendly and would far rather someone ask and clarify a question than run the risk of a fine.

Enjoy your holiday.

Fortaleza, CE
posts: 7,490
reviews: 360
8. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

The LAX improvements I've read about recently have had to do with the Tom Bradley Terminal and the Delta terminal. Air New Zealand uses Terminal 2 airnewzealand.com/connecting-at-los-angeles Assuming you're arriving and departing on Air NZ, it should be an easy process. Actual lines for Immigration can vary depending on how many other flights arrive at the same time, and number of personnel on duty. Since you're on one airline, I'd think chances of missing the connection at slim. You shouldn't have to change terminals. What are your arrival and departure times?

Edited: 2:34 pm, April 10, 2013
Fortaleza, CE
posts: 7,490
reviews: 360
9. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RsBFyFwqjI has some info on various stores and restaurants in the terminal. Enjoy your flight, and your brief views of my home town, Los Angeles.

By the way, be sure to fill out your Customs form on board the flight form LHR. The Immigration officer will initial it. After you pick up your checked bags, you go through Customs. This normally consists just of handing over that form, though you can get asked to go through secondary inspection, even at random. Then you take the bags, tagged for you ultimate destination, to a transit station, and hand them over. If you bought any crèmes or liquids in a duty free store, be sure those are put into your checked bags. Then you go to your gate, likely having to go through TSA inspection of carry-on bags. Really, not an onerous process.

South Pole
posts: 15,408
reviews: 39
10. Re: AirNZ Via Lax

dont know what sutter is going about here as the op was simply talking about the air new zealnd LHR to AKL transit stop in LAX.

no need to complicate the issue with all that extraneous information.