i think be checking the airline web sites that fly those routes.
eg. air new zealand (virgin australia) and qantas.
some of the other international airlines can do a good one way fare from sydney to auckland eg. LAN and emirates but then u could be stuck with an expensive one way back to melbourne.
of course u could always look at incorporating those legs in your international ticket.Edited: 20 December 2012, 23:52
Have a look at the Webjet site (http://www.webjet.com.au/), altho' once you've identified the fare that you're interested in, you can save fees by booking direct with the airline concerned.
You may be able to fly Air New Zealand to Sydney with a stopover in Auckland on the way. Sometimes speaking to a travel agent or airline rep can make these easier.
Depending on your NZ itinerary, I'd suggest that the cheapest option would be an open jaw ticket SYD-AKL then CHC-MEL, finding your own way overland from Auckland to Christchurch.
I'm not sure what's lien'e experiences are, but we travel annually to NZ and have never yet found a return ticket which wasn't in fact two one way fares.
January is peak holidays season so I would be surprised if you found any really cheap fares. Besides, January is only a few weeks away so any available bargains would have been snapped up by now.
The best fares we have found are usually with Virgin/Air New Zealand (code share but try to get onto ANZ metal - it's better) or Jetstar (not my personal favorite airline but usually the cheapest)
Jetstar is by far the cheapest (99%) of the time......I have flown as low as 129 one way in late Jan, never over 200 (for the past 6 summers) usually booked months ahead, but frequently see specials a month or two out......worth checking but it might be hard if you have specific dates in mind.
And agree there is no lower price for a return over 2 oneways, sometimes the opposite as the ex NZ fare AFTER currency conversion is sometimes cheaper than Aust-NZ legEdited: 21 December 2012, 07:48
Emirates are very competitive on the SYD - AKL , MEL AKL and BNE AKL routes as well as the SYD CHC route.
SYD AKL LAN and Aerolinas Argentius are also cheap sometimes.
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Yet another piece of necro-posting in the cause of self promotion? In case
You hadn't noticed, January has been and gone, as has the OP.
This is a very old post !! ... missed the previous post to see why it was zapped.