Thinking about whether or not I can afford a trip to New Zealand right now. It is not a small thing and it would involve a lot of planning for me to be able to pull it off. As an example if i wanted to go down to Orlando and see that mouse kingdom, I could go hop on a plane and be down there in about three hours I suppose. In this case I can figure out what the cost would be for air fare and for Greenstone lodge Queenstown accommodation in New Zealand, but the time is a big deal too. I do not have an unlimited amount of time I could devote to this trip and it really does not seem as though you want to do something like this in a big rush. It is likely to be a once in a lifetime type of adventure, so why go scurrying through it as though your butt was on fire.
I have not sat down to look at the airline schedules yet, but my guess is that it takes a long time to get there from here. I do a search for LAX to New Zealand and that gives me a price range, it is going to be North of a thousand dollars for a round trip, upwards to fourteen hundred I suppose. My guess is that you do not want to get the coach seats on that flight either. A web page I found lists the travel time for New Zealand as just under 14 hours, flying from LA. I would have to get across the country to get to LAX and then when I got to New Zealand (I would guess it would be Wellington or Auckland), then I would have to get to the final destination.