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Australian Holidays/flights

edited October 2010 in Not Sports Related
We hope to travel to Sydney via Hong Kong in july next year, some of you folk travel to Australia fairly frequently any advice on travel agents or flight agencies to use/avoid, should we book the whole package or contact the hotels directly?
cheers
Ray

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    Cheers Tel, like you say its bloody expensive.
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    Just been reading this as I want to go out and visit by brother & his Mrs in Sydney again some time........that was really useful advice Tel, thanks for that!

    Oh, and good luck TCE, bon voyage!

    P.S My mum & dad are currently out there and have been telling me how badly the exchange rate is affecting things and everything costs a bomb....I might be waiting until the exchange rate improves a bit or I won't be able to afford to do anything - I hope I don't have to wait ten years for that to happen!
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    That's the trip on the back-burner for a while, then!

    Thanks for the info, Tel.
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    Likewise, our anniversary trip next year will deferred.
    Two and a half grand we paid 5 years ago plus spending money, we are now being quoted Six grand!!
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    I have been to AUs twice in August recently and it is the best time to go to Queensland and N territories. Queensland includes Brisbane Cairns, Whitsunday islands and the barrier reef which is a must. Sydney still reasonablw that time of year.
    I would book the flights seperately as you probably can get a better deal but Bridge &Wickers are specialist travel agents for Aus. They are very knowlegdgeable about where to go and getting decent accomodation. I would highly recomend them.
    However it is expensive there at current exchange rate - I was there couple of weeks ago on business and was noticeably more expensive than couple of years back. As for someone commenting on house prices they are now far more than Sevenoaks in any decent area of Sydney.
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    Probably the cheapest way to do it would be either Air Asia Stanstead to KL, KL to either Gold Coast or Melb, then get internal flight/coach to Sydney, or Royal Brunei to Brisbane or Melb.
    Air Asia from what I've heard is a very good service for the money. Normally I wouldn't recommend Royal Brunei, but I've heard they've just upgraded their fleet to Boeing 777's.
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    Royal Brunei is also a 'dry' flight.
    Think coach trip to Carlisle times 3
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    my cousin is going in February to see the family in Sydney. Normally fly with Emirates, as do I, but they wanted nearly £1400 pp. They have booked though with El Attihad (sp, the mob who sponsor Man City) and have got it for about £1,000 pp. As stated the exchange rate is a real killer at the moment. I remember going in 1995 when it was about 2.70, even when I went Feb 2008 it was still 2.10. I wouldn't mind going next year but I'm not going to when it's that rate. Also remember to check when the Ashes matches are with regard to when you are going as that really bumps up the prices.

    PS - I would never use a specialised travel agent for anything other than flights as sometimes they can get good deals from the airlines on them but anything else such as internal flights, accomodation, special tour trips etc then I'd do it directly via the net. I've always found it cheaper and if you have the time to do it it's more fun researching, planning and then booking your own itiniary.
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