Notices

Airport Customs in Auckland

Reply

Mar 4th, 2015, 10:37 AM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 7
Airport Customs in Auckland

We are looking for some basic airport / logistics help here. Right now we are trying to plan a connecting flight from AKL to ChCh. Like most in the US we are arriving in AKL at 5:45am from LAX. We want to make a connection the same day and make ChCh our first stop. We didn't book through due to the fact that at the time we didn't have our itinerary fully thought out when we booked the original flight.

Our dilemma is deciding on which flt from AKL to ChCh to take. We want to give ourselves enough time to get thru Customs and then get to the NZ Domestic checkin....but don't want to spend too much time waiting.

If day of week matters, we'll arrive on a Friday morning. Also, any experience with Flt Delays from LAX to AKL would also help us with our decision.

Any recommendations or experiences anyone can share would be certainly helpful.

FWIW we live in Chicago, so we know how bad an airport (ORD) can be. Our apologies to the rest of the world for that experience.

Thanks
Steve
SBloom9387 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 4th, 2015, 11:29 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,680
In my experience Air NZ flights arriving in AKL from LAX or SFO tend to arrive early.

If you're connecting to a domestic flight within 60-90 minutes after arrival (I'm not sure what the actual cut off time is, you can check), you will have to collect your luggage in AKL, clear customs, and roll it over to the domestic terminal yourself (or take a shuttle - we usually walk as it's only 10 minutes and we are in desperate need of fresh air by that point.) Then you'd need to re-check your luggage at the domestic terminal.

If you have two hours or more between flights, they will transfer your luggage for you - you just need clear it in customs and deposit it at the transfer desk in AKL.

By THEY I mean Air NZ and their partners. If you are transferring to a non-alliance airline, they may not transfer for you, I'm not certain.

For this reason, I'd allow at least two hours between flights.

Arriving into CHC presents the problem of driving exhausted and jetlagged - what do you plan to do on that end? I have a few suggestions if needed.
Melnq8 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 4th, 2015, 11:53 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 16,086
It has been a while since my last trip but like Melnq8 I don't recall a flight every being late. They have a lot of room to catch up if there is a late departure, which is unlikely if you are on one of the flights that leave late.

The way the time change worked for me was that I would get tired later in the day, but not in the morning. So I tried to stay up as late as possible and inevitably get up early in the morning.

But NZ isn't that big for nightlife anyways, so it works out.

I like the Botanic Gardens and it looks like the Canterbury Museum is open.

It's been four years now since the earthquake. I visited just shortly before that.
mlgb is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 4th, 2015, 12:01 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 16,086
Actually 5 years since the first of the two quakes. My favorite B&B survived the first one but not the second.
mlgb is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 4th, 2015, 12:23 PM
  #5
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 7
Melnq8 and mlgb, thanks much. Both of these are quite helpful.

We're looking at a 9:15am flt out, which looks like it'll give us plenty of time for customs and transfers. When we arrive in CHC, we're planning on catching a taxi or some other form of transport to our hotel which will be close to the train station. So any suggestions greatly appreciated.

As for the arrival in ChCh, we're thinking we'd make the most of the day (Botanical Gardens was high on the list) and then catch an early dinner and a good night's rest. We're heading out on the 8:15am TransAlpine train the next day....so hopefully not too stressful of a start.

We'll loop the SI (apx 10 days) then spend a couple of days in ChCh before making our way northward. We had wondered about the lingering effects from the quakes. So your thoughts re ChCh would be good since our plans there are wide open.

Thanks for the quick replies.
SBloom9387 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 4th, 2015, 08:24 PM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,680
A taxi on arrival in Christchurch is a grand idea. Good on you for not planning to drive immediately.

I highly recommend Quake City in Christchurch and if time and energy allow, a Segway tour of the city is a brilliant way to see the earthquake recovery, which is quite a feat IMO.

Post-earthquake Christchurch has come a long way considering the issues involved in the rebuild. The Kiwi spirit is inspiring.
Melnq8 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 5th, 2015, 02:09 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 65
I think a 9.10am flight to Chch will be fine, and will probably have a number of passengers that will have arrived on the same international flight. I'd also recommend following the blue line to the domestic terminal, as it will probably take less time than the bus and you'll be ready for some fresh air and a leg stretch.

I live close to the train station in Christchurch and wouldn't really recommend it as a great area for first time visitors to Chch to stay (not central, not near any sights).

Easily accessible (but not too close!) to the train station, I'd try the Chateau on the Park (you can walk to the botanic gardens and museum from there).

Tourism has suffered in Christchurch post EQ with the lack of hotel beds, so thanks coming, I really hope you enjoy it
Thelittlestkiwi is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2015, 02:32 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 764
We no longer bother trying to get our luggage transferred from the international terminal to domestic. We have seen huge queues at the luggage drop-off desk at that that time of the morning, so we prefer to wheel our own cart across to domestic and check it in there. The fresh air and exercise is welcome after a long flight.
You will have plenty of time for a 9.15 flight. You could make it earlier.
It is good to see that you are allowing a reasonable period of time to cover the South Island. Will you be picking up a car on the West Coast or are you coming back to Christchurch on the TransAlpine and then doing your loop from there?
Rob.
kiwi_rob is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 9th, 2015, 07:10 AM
  #9
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 7
Thanks all for very helpful info. Some great ideas re CHC and this has put me much more at ease re our arrival schedule.

We are planning on picking up a car in Greymouth. This should help with the "left side" driving as it appears we won't have too many"urban" situations"to deal with, vs CHC and the NI.

As for the 10 day loop, from Greymouth we'll head south, then across to Wanaka, QT, TeAnau, Dunedin, MtCook, CHC. Most days 4-5hrs driving or less, with a stop day or two in between. We then have several, flexible days for CHC to Nelson before taking a ferry to the NI....with about a week there....all of which we're thinking that we'll "just wing it".

We are really looking forward to this.
SBloom9387 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 9th, 2015, 04:00 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 764
Before you head south from Greymouth, try to fit in a day trip up the Coast to Punakaiki. The coastal scenery is beautiful and, if you strike the tides and weather right, the blowholes at Punakaiki can be spectacular.
Rob.
kiwi_rob is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:06 AM.