Shandelle Battersby flies aboard NZ2 from Auckland to Los Angeles.
A 777-300, with a seat configuration of 3-4-3.
Price: From $939 one way.
Flight time: 12 hours and 10 minutes.
My seat: 45C, in a SkyCouch row. We hadn't booked the SkyCouch but were offered the belt pack for my 8-year-old nephew. He slept for six of the 12 hours sprawled across me and his dad, who slept for about zero of the 12 hours as a result.
Fellow passengers: A good mixture including plenty of people who, like us, were travelling with kids outside the school holidays.
How full: Rammed to the gunnels.
Entertainment: A good selection of movies and telly, including plenty of options that are not listed on the main menus but pop up in the "recommended" panel down the right-hand side. The 8-year-old was thrilled with the three Diary of a Wimpy Kid shows; not so thrilled we wouldn't let him watch Deadpool.
The service: Great, as always.
Food and drink: I had an okay chicken curry for dinner but skipped the breakfast. The children's meal of crumbed chicken strips was outright rejected.
The toilets: Standard and best avoided after a night flight.
Luggage: One bag of 23kg each.
The airport experience: Auckland International Airport is a little chaotic with the refurbishment but nothing compared to the hell that is LAX. Three big flights arrived at once and it took two hours to snake through the seemingly endless security lines after the E-gate machines seemed to reject almost everyone that attempted to use them.
Would I fly this again? Indeed — it's always great to go direct and Air New Zealand is awesome.