luggage weight restrictions?

Jun 26th, 2006, 10:26 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 6
luggage weight restrictions?

I've done my research and find that my flight from the US to NZ on Qantas restricts me to 2 pieces of checked luggage, not to exceed 70 pounds per piece.

HOWEVER, once I arrive in NZ I will be flying on Air New Zealand twice. Their luggage guidelines are only 44 pounds total for checked luggage.

This makes it tough to pack for an extended trip. Does anyone have experience with these luggage restrictions? Do I just pack really light, or fork over the extra $ for the overage fees?
caito76 is offline  
Jun 26th, 2006, 12:30 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
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how long is an "extended trip"? do you leave from the same city?

20kg is pretty much standard internationally. we've done several 3-4 week trips with no problems. (I just got back from a 4 weeks in Australia: max wgt= 19kg; and that's after buying art work, gifts, etc.). It is quite doable. Here's some hints: Fodors Forums under "baggage"/ "general interest" for ideas better than mine. a light weight suitcase.
3.bring old clothes to dump and leave in NZ. [especially important if you go to Rotorua] laundry, or let the hotel do it-maybe a little more expensive than excess bagage for each flight, but then you don't have to drag so much bagage around.
5.if you fly out of the same city, store a bag at the hotel.
6. wear your heavy clothes, shoes, and jacket.

New Zealand is a fantastic country, have a wonderful time! Remember, everyone says when they get home "I had a great time but I brought too much stuff"
tampatramp is offline  
Jun 26th, 2006, 02:59 PM
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We've travel alot, and have pretty much gotten packing down to a science.

Regardless of the length of our trips, we pack only a week's worth of clothing and do laundry along the way. Landromats are everywhere in NZ, and I'd be really surprised if you didn't find do-it-yourself laundry facilities in every hotel/motel/apartment you encounter in NZ.

We also layer - we've gotten by in NZ on six trips (four times during the winter) with a fleece jacket and a waterproof layer that fits over the fleece. We also take rain pants, silk long underwear, hats and gloves, and hiking boots because we spend alot of our time outdoors.

Kiwis are casual - there's no need to get all dolled up in NZ unless you're going to a formal event.

I'd also suggest you take clothes you can easily mix and match.

You'd be surprised how easy it is to pack when you pack for only a week.

FYI - In my experience Air NZ is very strict with their luggage limits. They weigh carry-ons too, so you'd do well to take a small amount of cabin baggage.

Traveling light is the only way to go -you'll be glad you did.

If you plan to pick up some items in NZ to take home, you might want to pack an empty collapsable bag of some sort.

You can then do your shopping towards the end of your trip, and you'll have the extra space from the duffle and the extra luggage allowance going home with your goodies.

Have fun - NZ is a wonderful place!

Melnq8 is online now  
Jun 26th, 2006, 03:25 PM
Join Date: Aug 2003
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Good advice there. We've learned the hard way to pack light, but even before we refined our act we had no trouble staying within the 20-kg limit on a 7-week visit to the USA. Same when we took a 3-week small-group tour through Vietnam, where to our embarrassment we found that we were the couple with the biggest bags; all the others, most of them more experienced travellers than us, packed noticeably lighter. Anything more than 20 kg (certainly 70 lb, which is over 30 kg) is just too much trouble to lug around anyway.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Jun 26th, 2006, 05:47 PM
Join Date: May 2004
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Check with Air New Zealand. If you were going to Australia instead of New Zealand, the international limits would apply for your entire trip if all flights were booked as part of the same itinerary.
Europewithkids is offline  
Jun 26th, 2006, 07:18 PM
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The above poster makes a good point - if for instance you're traveling Air NZ from Queenstown, then connecting with an international flight to the US in Christchurch, they may give you the US luggage allowance if you check your bags all the way to the US. It never hurts to ask anyway.

The extra allowance won't do you much good if you're making separate internal flights within NZ though.

Do you have frequent flyer status with an airline? If you do, you might get more luggage that way too, but IMO you're really better off packing light.

Melnq8 is online now  
Jun 28th, 2006, 05:51 AM
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I agree that it is reasonable to pack one week's worth of clothes. Many places have washing machines.

My wife and I had a 26' and 22' bag for checking, and smaller ones for carrying. In all our travels, the 26' has never weighed more than 42 lbs. Indeed, you really don't want to physically carry more than that.

In any case, when we went on our internal Qantas and NZAir flights, we wore our heaviest clothes, coats, and boots.

Pack your luggage now, just to see how much they actually weigh. Be reasonable, and you won't have a problem.
Jed is offline  
Jun 28th, 2006, 02:17 PM
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We just recently returned. We went ANZ both within and to/from NZ. We mentioned this and it seemed to put things in a favorable light when we checked in for the flights within NZ. It is easier for two people because they don't count the individual bags-just the 88 pound total for two people. We couldn't have carried more than that anyway. When you check in, wear your heaviest coat, shoes, and fill your pockets. As a last resort consider mailing gifts, etc. home before you fly.
GBC is offline  
Jun 28th, 2006, 03:34 PM
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Does anyone happen to know if all the airlines in that part of the world combine the total weight for two people as GBC posted above re ANZ. Specifically would appreciate info about Qantas, JetStar, and Virgin Blue. Have I overlooked any internal AU airlines?
Betsy is offline  
Jun 28th, 2006, 05:00 PM
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Betsy -

Jetstar does and I suspect the others do as well. When two people check in together each bag is weighed separately, then each is tagged. We've never had a problem if one bag weighs more than 20 kg as long as the weight of the second bag doesn't push us over combined 40 kg limit.

Beware - Jetstar tends to weigh carry ons as well and I think the limit is 7 kg.

BTW - I just finished packing for a two week trip to Western Australia. I got a weeks worth of clothing for two adults, two pairs of hiking boots, two sets of rain pants and jackets, two sets of hats and gloves, a backpack, two pairs of slippers and loungewear, coffee making supplies, cosmetic items and four paperbacks into one 29" Samsonite suitcase. Just weighed it and it's 22 kg. No problem.

Melnq8 is online now  
Jun 29th, 2006, 06:36 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Thanks, Melnq8. The Qantas allowance for international travel won't be a problem, but we'll be doing a couple of trips independent of our international itinerary, and I just want to be prepared. We are from the "pack for a week and do laundry along the way" school, so I don't have to have perfectly well-coordinated 30 outfits for our month-long trip. However, we will be spending time in Tasmania (I hope) and at the GBR (booked), so that means packing for two different climates, which may be a challenge not overcome by layering.
Betsy is offline  

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