I’ve flown the Australia to America route a few times now, and I’ve learnt that there is a huge difference between the airlines – bigger than I ever thought.
I use Skyscanner to search for cheaper airlines/dates, since you can search by a whole month, or even year, and you can search by a whole country, rather than one airport. You can do searches like ‘LAX’ to ‘United States’, for the month of ‘August’. It’s magical. I always check with STA Travel and Student Universe, because there are often student discounts.
The cheapest airline from Sydney – LAX is Air Pacific, but it has a stopover in Nadi, Fiji. The best airline for the route is definitely Qantas but it’s usually 1.5x the cost of Air Pacific. Delta is pretty good as well. A one way costs up to $1500, but there often comes up return flights for $999.
This time, I opted for Sydney – Nadi – LAX with Air Pacific, at just $545!!!