Shocking price difference: Flights booked in NZ versus overseas

It's almost always cheaper to fly to New Zealand than to fly out of it, Newshub Travel has found with our latest price check.

People booking tickets flying return to Auckland from popular destinations would pay up to 30 percent less than booking return tickets from Auckland to the same destinations.

The destinations included in the price check were Los Angeles, London, Chicago, Hong Kong, Sydney and Melbourne.

Flying return Auckland-London with Air NZ on the selected dates would cost you $2110, whereas return flights from London to Auckland would be 23 percent less, at $1614.

On Cathay Pacific, Auckland-London was quoted at $2862 - but flying the route in reverse, on the same dates, would be 30 percent cheaper at $1999.

It's not just flights to London where such price difference occurs.

Flights on Air NZ to Los Angeles on the same sample dates came in at $2093, but flying the route in reverse cost just $1399.

Auckland-Hong Kong return was quoted at $1306, but the reversed route dropped under the $1000 mark to $928.73.

Shocking price difference: Flights booked in NZ versus overseas
Photo credit: Newshub.

Full results: 
 

  • Air NZ: Los Angeles - Auckland return $1,399.00
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Los Angeles return $2,093.00 (33 percent cheaper)
  • Air NZ: Chicago - Auckland return $1,681.60
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Chicago return $1,834.00 (8 percent cheaper)
  • Air NZ: Hong Kong - Auckland return $928.73
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Hong Kong return $1,306.00 (29 percent cheaper)
  • Air NZ: London - Auckland return $1,614.03
  • Air NZ: Auckland - London return $2,112.00 (23.5 percent cheaper)
  • Air NZ: Sydney - Auckland return $631.00 (37 percent more expensive) 
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Sydney return $399.00
  • Air NZ: Melbourne - Auckland return $612.00
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Melbourne return $402.00 (37 percent more expensive)
  • Air NZ: Perth - Auckland return $1,055.00 (2 percent more expensive ) 
  • Air NZ: Auckland - Perth return $1,029.00
  • Cathay Pacific: Auckland - London return $2,862.05
  • Cathay Pacific: London - Auckland return $1,999.82 (30 percent cheaper)
  • Emirates: Auckland - London return $1,690.95
  • Emirates: London - Auckland return $1,739.40 (3 percent more expensive)
  • Qantas: Auckland - London return $2,091.00
  • Qantas: London - Auckland return $1,824.50 (13 percent more expensive)
  • Qatar: Auckland - London return $1,874.75
  • Qatar: London - Auckland return $2,527.66 (26 percent more expensive)
  • Singapore: Auckland - London return $2,143.85
  • Singapore: London - Auckland return $1,708.91 (20 percent cheaper)
  • Thai: Auckland - London return $2,428.15 (30 percent more expensive) 
  • Thai: London - Auckland return $1,750.25
  • Malaysia: Auckland - London return $2,171.45 (19 percent more expensive)
  • Malaysia: London - Auckland return $1,837.75

There were some airlines and routes where this wasn't the case, and flights out of Auckland were actually cheaper.

Airfares can differ by as much as 30 percent depending on where you book them.
Airfares can differ by as much as 30 percent depending on where you book them. Photo credit: Getty Images/Newshub.

Bucking the trend: 
 

  • Air NZ: Sydney -Auckland $631.00 return (37 percent more)
  • Air NZ: Auckland-Sydney $399.00 return
  • Air NZ: Melbourne-Auckland $612.00 return (34 percent more)
  • Air NZ: Auckland-Melbourne $402.00 return
  • Emirates: Auckland-London $1,690.95 return 
  • Emirates: London-Auckland $1,739.40 return (3 percent more)
  • Qatar: Auckland-London $1,874.75 return
  • Qatar: London -Auckland $2,527.66 return (26 percent more)
  • Thai: Auckland-London $2,428.15 return (30 percent more)
  • Thai: London-Auckland $1,750.25 return
  • Malaysia: Auckland-London $2,171.45 return (19 percent more)
  • Malaysia: London-Auckland $1,837.75 return

Why the difference?  
 

The general consensus from airlines is that these price differences are very normal and exist for a handful of reasons, the main one being competition.

Air NZ said its airfares around the world are priced independently to best cater for each local market.

"It is normal practice for airlines to offer different prices in different markets at any point in time due to normal market dynamics such as local customer demand, seat availability and localised promotional activity. Fares from all of our overseas markets are priced independently, as each has a different set of competitors and pricing dynamics," an airline spokesperson said.

Malaysia Airlines agreed and said its fares are "benchmarked based on market behaviours at every point of origin/destination".

Qantas said seasonal demand and currency strength were major factors for its operations.

"During the late-March and April travel months when the direct London-Perth services commence, the difference in fares will be reflective of traditionally stronger demand from Australians travelling to the UK and Europe, while the demand for UK and European travellers to Australia is generally lower," an airline spokesperson said.

All of the airlines listed in this price check were contacted for comment, but not all responded.

The airfares quoted were all for the same dates - departing September 1 and returning October 1.

Newshub.

 

Contact Newshub with your story tips:
news@newshub.co.nz