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flight recommendations from east coast


nattygurk
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Hi will be traveling next July Boston to Tahiti. Trying to decide best flight options? One stop and do it all at once or fly to California and then next day take rest of trip. Also any airlines better/more comfortable than another. It is a loooong trip for us.  Will be flying economy. First time to the South Pacific. Thanks in advance! 

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From Toronto, we usually stay overnight in Los Angeles on the way there.  We also try to get to Papeete a couple of days before we embark, so we're mostly over the jet lag when we begin the cruise.  Coming back, we usually just fly to LAX, change planes, and then on to Toronto: that way we get over the jet lag at home.

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This is our first time to Tahiti and I decided to fly all the way there in one day.  We are limited for time with the kids at home.  We leave Minneapolis at 7:15 am and go to SFO and a long layover then off to Tahiti and we get there at 8:40 pm.  We are getting a room at Fare Suisse overnight then off to Moorea for 3 days of relaxing before our cruise and getting use to the time difference.   Doing it all in one day home also.  I picked united since I liked the flight times better.  I also wanted all my flights ticketed together with one airline to avoid issues if we have flight delays for weather or any other reason.  We upgraded our flights to premium economy on the Tahiti portion only to have more leg room.  Our flights with the upgrade were each $300 cheaper than the PG allowance just for the LAX to Tahiti fare.

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It's all personal preference. Traveling from Florida, we like everything the opposite of FM555. We would never do the whole trip in one day. Relying on an airline to get you to the west coast on time, and paying the much higher airfares from Florida to LAX on morning flights isn't our preference (and requires a hotel overnight near the airport before the early Florida flight). We don't want to spend a long time sitting at LAX so the 11:00 PM flight isn't our preference. And we prefer to have at least 1 overnight (and 2 is better) in Tahiti before we board since it gives us time to relax and adjust to the time change.

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We are also flying from Boston but staying overnight  in LA then taking the 11pm flight to Papeete. We’re big fans of Jetblue and their direct flights to LA. Once we land in Papeete, we’re heading over to Moorea  precruise. Post cruise we are leaving PPT at midnight and landing around 9am in LA. Our Jetblue Boston flight leaves at 1pm. We are also traveling in November/December, so I like to have a buffer on the way there in case of bad weather here. BTW - the Jetblue credit card often has a nice 40k mile bonus for new members. Those miles took care of our US flights. 

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19 hours ago, huladoula1 said:

We are also flying from Boston but staying overnight  in LA then taking the 11pm flight to Papeete. We’re big fans of Jetblue and their direct flights to LA. Once we land in Papeete, we’re heading over to Moorea  precruise. Post cruise we are leaving PPT at midnight and landing around 9am in LA. Our Jetblue Boston flight leaves at 1pm. We are also traveling in November/December, so I like to have a buffer on the way there in case of bad weather here. BTW - the Jetblue credit card often has a nice 40k mile bonus for new members. Those miles took care of our US flights. 

We use Jetblue whenever possible from Florida to California (as well as to Boston for family on Cape Cod). I used my Jetblue credit card and points (including the 40K when I signed up earlier this year) to fly out a few days earlier to SFO than we had planned when Dorian was headed toward FLL. We were able to get a credit for our original flight (which was also to SFO), and our rental car cost was the same with a weekly rate. We had a great time driving down to LAX for our flight to PPT,  spending time with old friends and exploring the Pacific Coast highway along the way. We'll have no problem using the credit from the 2 day earlier flight that we cancelled.

 

I wish the Jetblue Florida flights from LAX lined up nicely with the return 11pm flights from PPT. We have always rented a car, and explored the LA area until our red eye back to Florida. Two red eyes in a row are hard at our age. On the PG cruise we just came back from, we rented a day room at the LA Airport Holiday Inn instead of renting a car. The cost was about the same.

 

Since we're retired, our time isn't as valuable as those who are still working and using vacation time. Adding a few days on the way there and back to make the trip more comfortable are an easier choice for us than those who have jobs to return to. We've been there and done that.

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On 9/25/2019 at 8:50 AM, MNmomof4 said:

This is our first time to Tahiti and I decided to fly all the way there in one day.  We are limited for time with the kids at home.  We leave Minneapolis at 7:15 am and go to SFO and a long layover then off to Tahiti and we get there at 8:40 pm.  We are getting a room at Fare Suisse overnight then off to Moorea for 3 days of relaxing before our cruise and getting use to the time difference.   Doing it all in one day home also.  I picked united since I liked the flight times better.  I also wanted all my flights ticketed together with one airline to avoid issues if we have flight delays for weather or any other reason.  We upgraded our flights to premium economy on the Tahiti portion only to have more leg room.  Our flights with the upgrade were each $300 cheaper than the PG allowance just for the LAX to Tahiti fare.

 

On 9/28/2019 at 6:10 PM, SWFLAOK said:

We use Jetblue whenever possible from Florida to California (as well as to Boston for family on Cape Cod). I used my Jetblue credit card and points (including the 40K when I signed up earlier this year) to fly out a few days earlier to SFO than we had planned when Dorian was headed toward FLL. We were able to get a credit for our original flight (which was also to SFO), and our rental car cost was the same with a weekly rate. We had a great time driving down to LAX for our flight to PPT,  spending time with old friends and exploring the Pacific Coast highway along the way. We'll have no problem using the credit from the 2 day earlier flight that we cancelled.

 

I wish the Jetblue Florida flights from LAX lined up nicely with the return 11pm flights from PPT. We have always rented a car, and explored the LA area until our red eye back to Florida. Two red eyes in a row are hard at our age. On the PG cruise we just came back from, we rented a day room at the LA Airport Holiday Inn instead of renting a car. The cost was about the same.

 

Since we're retired, our time isn't as valuable as those who are still working and using vacation time. Adding a few days on the way there and back to make the trip more comfortable are an easier choice for us than those who have jobs to return to. We've been there and done that.

We live outside Washington DC.  We book two tickets for this trip.  First is round trip DCA to LAX, with two days buffer between the Tahiti flights.  We use either American or United for this leg.  Then Air France round trip to Tahiti.  We spend two days each way in LA.

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Back in June for our first trip to cruise on the Paul Gauguin, we spent one night in LA on the outbound trip. We booked our Charlotte to LAX tickets using American AAdvantage miles, but booked our LAX to PPT on a separate ticket direct with Air Tahiti Nui in Premium Economy. We did not want to risk a flight delay from CLT to LAX impacting our 4:40pm departure connection to Tahiti (especially since we were flying on non-connecting tickets), so we opted for more peace of mind by doing the overnight in LAX. 

 

On the return flights, we took the chance and booked it without an overnight in LA, but scheduled it as about a 5 hour time between flights at LAX to allow for inbound delay. Since we were coming home, and there are many flight options to get from LAX to CLT, we opted to roll the rice and skip the overnight, since we would already have one overnight on the PPT-LAX flight.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Like many had mentioned before it’s such a personal preference of whether you want to stay the night somewhere in the middle. Yes, it’s probably safer in case  a flight is delayed. But for me and DH, it’s more of a hassle of going to the hotel, unpacking, sleeping, getting up, packing and then getting back on another airplane. We would just rather push through the process and get there.  And then spend a few days pre-cruise relatively near port. 
 

we aren’t retired, and maybe we will change your mind when we are. But I really don’t think so just because of the hassle factor. But ask me again in X years. Who knows!

 

 

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We are still in the middle of our trip but can add that we flew BOS to LAX and then immediately connected to Air Tahiti Nui on the 4:40 pm departure. It was a long day but we don’t like decoupling connected flights (two check ins,etc). We stayed at the IC Tahiti for two nights so that we could attempt to be over jet lag by the start of the cruise.  It all worked well. We will reverse that euphemism we fly home this Wednesday. If you can afford Premium Economy, go for it.  The leg room on ATN is poor in Economy. And their movie selection wasn’t great. 

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18 hours ago, lovestx said:

We are still in the middle of our trip but can add that we flew BOS to LAX and then immediately connected to Air Tahiti Nui on the 4:40 pm departure. It was a long day but we don’t like decoupling connected flights (two check ins,etc). We stayed at the IC Tahiti for two nights so that we could attempt to be over jet lag by the start of the cruise. 

 

We are doing the same thing flying from Orlando to LAX (1st class non-stop) and then on to PPT on ATN's 4:40pm flight in Premium Economy. Was originally taking their redeye but they added the evening flight so that seemed better to us. Considered a LAX stayover but decided to push on thru. We're only spending 1 night at the IC Tahiti, however, as we'll take the ferry to Moorea the next day for a 2-night pre-cruise stay at the Hilton Moorea then 4-nights post-cruise in Bora Bora.

 

Everyone's comments and suggestions here have been so helpful! 

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