hi there i am go to oz and new zealand next year and would like to know who would be the best people to bank with out there, should i set up an account be for i leave or do it when i get there. also who is the cheapest to book your flights with. should i book a one way or return. what other types are there.
I don't know how long you plan on being in NZ and Oz, but i was over in Oz for 4 1/2 months and set up a bank through HSBC because they have branches in my hometown in the US and in Sydney where I spent most of my time. Also I set the account up ahead of time since they have them in the US. A bank that I saw alot in Oz and NZ was ANZ (its Australia New Zealand bank). If you are only going for a short time you shouldn't need to open an account because you can use ATMs usually for a small fee if its not your home bank, and you can use credit cards.
For flights I traveled from NY to Oz and flew Qantas, which was a great quality airline. Also I was traveling in NZ and met a girl who booked a one-way flight from Australia to NZ and wasn't allowed to get on the flight because in order to get into NZ she was told she also needed a ticket out of the country, so I would check out that info before purchasing a ticket.
I agree with BlueSand93. From the States, the best choice would be Qantas over United. Seeing that you are coming from the UK, there are plenty of choices via the Mid East or SE Asia. Qantas is currently having sales to Australia and I booked flights JFK-LAX-SYD and MEL-LAX-JFK for $1430. Return flights will save you money but limit your flexibility
For Banking the Commonwealth Bank would probably be the best as it has more ATM's than all the others and they are also the one bank that regularly has an ATM in a bit out of the way places where as ANZ, NAB, Westpac etc rarely have an ATM in a small suburb.
As for flights it depends on how adventurous you are as to the best ie cheapest. If you want a direct route then Qantas is probably about best, but if you are adventurous you can get a cheaper option but it does need to be booked in advance by a long way. You can buy an Oasis Aitlines flight to Hong Kong, then get a ferry from Hong Kong to Macau and a Viva Macau flight flight Macau-Sydney. That would normally work out a fraction of the cost for a qantas flight but does invloved a lot of mucking around on your behalf.
Do yourself a favour when you come to Australia. DO NOT spend 3/4 of your time in Sydney like one of the others posted. Sydney is not the real Australia it more like a wanna be New York. Stay there for a week or so and then move on to a much nicer city. Melbourne is far nicer although still a little bit Americanised with the building it is very cosmipolian.
Have a great trip.