Australia/New Zealand Oct. 2011

we (2 couples) are traveling to Australia/New Zealand in October and would love to meet other travelers before we depart.
We've traveled with Tauck in Egypt and with others to many foreign sites and ports of call. We are traveling from the Washington, DC area, and our travelmates are traveling from the West coast.
Looking forward to this grand adventure,


  • Mimi what is your departure date? My husband & I are on the Oct. 17th trip.
  • hi..
    mimi7..I have read your post and got to know about the port of call..Can you tell me where the port of call is and whats so interesting about that port..Anyways by reading this name it looks interesting..And definitely I am planning to go there..


    Looking for the information regarding: travel and villa locations
  • Hi, AndreaN,
    We are joining Tauck in Melbourne on Oct. 17 as well. We will arrive a day or two early and I think we are staying at the first hotel on the tour. We are traveling from the Washington, DC area so we are probably leaving on Oct. 14 and crossing the international dateline to arrive in Melbourne on the 16th? Can you tell that I let my husband make all the preparations?
    Looking forward to meeting everyone!
  • Hi Everyone,
    My husband and I are also on the Oct. 17th trip. We are leaving New York on the 13th so will be in Melbourne early. My husband also made all the reservations so I will be a true tourist (just tell me what time I have to be where). Looking forward to meeting everyone and having a great time.
  • Hi Mimi and Helene! So sorry it's taken me this long to visit the forum again. Really getting excited since final payment has been made.

    My husband and I used frequent flyer miles for our trip from Boston, so right now I'm leaving on the 12th arriving in MEL on the 14th, and he is leaving on the 13th arriving on the 15th. I'm hoping I can convince Qantas to open up a seat for him on the 12th so we can fly together.

    I booked the Langham for our extra days in Melbourne. I thought it would just be easier than changing hotels.

    We are on the Spotlight on Australia portion. We really want to visit New Zealand but decided we would go back on a NZ only trip one of these days - if we survive the flights!

  • Hi, Helene and Andrea,
    Final payment has been made, so I guess we are really going on this distant adventure. Can't imagine flying this distance twice, but also can't imagine being away from home for such a long time. We're looking forward to it.
    We are also arriving a day early. Got frequent flyer tickets - thanks to my husband who called no fewer that 30 times at all hours of the day and night. Starting to think about packing as it will be cool in the evenings and in in New Zealand.
    Six weeks and counting.
  • Hi Everyone,
    I guess it is finally time to get excited and start thinking about what to take. We have been out of commissioner because of hurricane Irene but now all is back to normal. What kind of clothing and how much luggage is anyone taking?
  • We usually travel in drip dry travel clothes and lots of layers. Probably one decent pair of slacks and one nice top for special occasions. Most of the REI travel stuff dries overnight and the hotel hairdryers hasten the process. From the rear, most of us look the same - khaki slacks, blue or beige shirts, olive green hats, hiking/walking shoes, lovely fleece jackets, roll-up raincoats - you've got the picture. It's not the clothes that take up the space - it's the incidentals and shoes.
    Travel documents arrived today!
    Looking forward to meeting in Melbourne. We are arriving at the Langham a day early as well.
  • Hi, Andrea,
    I hope you get on the same plane. We used American frequent flyer miles and were able to get seats on the Dallas-Syndney flight with Quantas. It's a relatively new flight, so it worked for us. We had to tell the travel agent about the route. Maybe you'll be lucky also.
    Good luck.
  • Hi Harriet,

    I hope we end up on the same plane too! I'm going to call AA/Qantas in the next few days to see if there is anything they can do. After tomorrow I will have enough miles this year to qualify for Executive Platinum in their frequent flyer program, so hopefully I can make it happen.

    I had thought about changing our routing when they introduced the DFW routing, but I really want to fly on the A380, and they are only using 747s out of Dallas.

    Are you getting excited? I can't believe it's almost here - I started planning this trip about over 2 years ago!
  • Hi, Andrea,
    We are getting excited. We are praying for good weather! The east coast here has had enough rain to consider building another ark! Have to get serious about packing and unpacking so that everything fits. It's not the clothes, it's the incidentals - the shoes, the raincoat, the cosmetics - I always like to take it with me rather than replace it there.....
    Looking forward to meeting everyone.
    Safe travels.
  • I've been working on a checklist of things to take since my last few trips I've forgotten something. I'm really trying not to overpack since I don't want to get into trouble with overweight bags during our intra-Australia flights. I can always send things out to be laundered during our last few days in Sydney if necessary.

    I've been keeping my eye on the weather. It's been rainy in Melbourne and Sydney - fingers crossed it will be nice and clear during our time there. Not too worried about Ayers Rock and Port Douglas, the weather looks perfect.

    If by any chance you're on Facebook I have a page that I keep updated with my travels called Andrea's Adventures. I'll be updating it with info about my flight as well as my first few days in Melbourne.

    Safe travels to you too - see you in a little over a week!
  • edited October 2011

    I am on the Oct. 31st trip and am looking forward to reading your updates on FB before I go!! Especially about the long flight.

    Have a great trip!


    p.s. I'm in Boston, MA, too.
  • Went on this trip a few years ago. Its such a wonderful journey! We went in there fall, your going in there Spring. We did use rain slickers twice, and we had fleece jackets for warmth. Its quite casual. More so then we thought. We did dress the first and last evenings and a few in between, but the outback we wore jeans at night, great cocktail hour at Ayres Rock, very warm during the day, a pair of capris and a T are fine, we did not have problems with the flys. Do not use bug spray as we were told, it attracts not detracts. Don't bother bringing, threw mine away. The great barrier reef was interesting, dressed nice casual at the resort for dinner each night. Day time of course we were in the pool.
    New Zealand was cool, dressed nice casual at night but some nights we just made it back in time and the dress was what we were wearing that day. New Zealnd is wonderful and the private plane is really the way to go when going to Mt. Cook.
    Not one man on our tour wore a jacket at dinner anywhere.
    We all seem to have the same anxiety before we leave but we managed with our one suitcase and a carryon quite well. They weigh in bulk during the inner flights, arranged by the guide, no one had a problem with weight on our tour.
    Be comfortable, have fun. The flights are the flights, its long, Quantas was a great airlines, we came from NY to LA and on to Melbourne. Saw 4 movies and read a whole book. Just get up and walk around. Have a geat journey.
  • Hi SUngar - thanks so much for your post! Great information, especially about the bug spray. Flies/mosquitos etc. love me, but hopefully I won't be bothered too much by them. Good to hear about everyone checking their bags at the same time for the group flights. It's been that way for the couple of group trips we've taken in the past, but you never know.

    Kathy, I will definitely be keeping my Facebook page updated, and I'm on Twitter as LuxTravelAndrea. Too bad you're not on our trip too! You'll probably be leaving on the day we return, the 28th, as we are only doing the Australia portion. I will try to upload pictures too. I went ahead and bought the biggest international data plan I could for my iPhone!!

    Hard to believe a week from now hubby and I will be in Melbourne!!

  • Hi Andrea - yes, you're correct, we leave the 28th. This will be our first Tauck tour and I can't wait as I've heard such great things about them!

    I'm looking forward to all of your posts and will watch for them.

    Have a great time!!

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