Air New Zealand letter a 'brush-off'

Clare Curran
Clare Curran
Labour member of Parliament Clare Curran is ''disgusted'' by Air New Zealand's response concerning the cutting of a direct flight from Auckland.

As of March 1, the direct evening flight, which used to leave Auckland at 7pm and arrived in Dunedin at 9pm, ceased. That cut prompted the Dunedin South MP to write to Air New Zealand chief executive Christopher Luxon inviting him to Dunedin to discuss the move.

In his March 10 response, he reiterated the airline's commitment to the city.

''Unfortunately, the ongoing losses we have been incurring on the existing jet services between Auckland and Dunedin mean we have had to make adjustments that ensure that services to Dunedin are sustainable.''

He declined to come to Dunedin as the changes were ''effectively communicated'' to the Dunedin business community last month. He apologised for not extending that invitation to Ms Curran and Dunedin North MP David Clark.

Ms Curran said the letter was a ''brush-off'' and she was disgusted by the response.

''The chief executive of Air New Zealand should be taking Dunedin more seriously.''

She believed the airline had a statutory obligation to provide a national service, and feared more cuts were likely.

''I am asking the people to speak up. I have been approached constantly since this was announced,'' she said.


I've got an idea

I've got a great idea for Dunedin. I saw this movie once, you might of heard of it. Field Of Dreams? This guy hears a voice "if you build it he will come" So he did, he built a baseball stadium and his dead dad turned up and bought a whole lot of people along who bought a ticket and saved the day. So I have a dream for Dunedin. If we build a stadium a whole lot of people will come to the city and get bottoms into seats on the plane, plane won't need to be cancelled and it will save the day. I reckon it's a great idea. One day if we are lucky it will happen. Anyway it's just an idea.


Irrelevant. You said monopoly, there isn't one. Why one earth would there be two flights at that time when one isn't even sustainable? This is clearly a case of Clare being annoyed that she can't occasionally take her preferred flight and using her position as an MP to try and make it something it's not. I'm so embarrassed that she is representing our city.

Your pilot, Captain 'Jet' Liner

Yes, Lily, but do they cover the route and times Clare mentions, and, um, isn't their customer service allegedly random?


You might need to look up the definition of a monopoly - there are currently two providers. Jet Star flies direct Dunedin - Auckland - Dunedin every day.

Suffer a jet

Fungus P, 'the people', as you sneeringly put it, won't have a bar of air travel. We go surface. Since Ansett left, Air NZ has a monopoly. Try charters from Aero Club pilots logging hours.

Bigger than Angry Birds

"Does nobody outside of Dunedin know we have the Stadium? Surely we should be getting more flights, not less."  

Darn tootin', BMC.  Because it's bigger than Angry Birds - visiting places to look at stadiums in which there's nothing happening.  It's so much easier to see them clearly when they don't have bunches of people milling around, getting in your photographs.

Be logical

Minnie me: Be logical. If the flight was profitable, why would Air NZ cut it? Just to spite us? There is no reason to release loading figures. Do you really think you would look at the figures and (aha!) prove that it's all a plot to inconvenience Dunedinites?
When a manufacturing company drops a non-profitable product line, does an MP write to the CEO asking for a meeting and then go crying to the newspaper when this is declined? This is really so embarrassing for Clare - she has made herself look like a spoiled brat. 

I don't understand it

I simply don't understand what I'm reading. Does nobody outside of Dunedin know we have the Stadium? Surely we should be getting more flights, not less.

No crew savings

Air New Zealand always has a jet crew overnight and still does Sunday till Friday to fly the 6.50am flight out in the morning. The flight that has been stopped had the same crew fly it back to Auckland. so no savings there. For Luxon to say to say the changes were "effectively communicated" to the business community last month is rubbish, as my partner flies at least once a week to Auckland and new nothing of the changes until trying to book flights. I challenge Air New Zealand to release loading figures (which they won't do) for this flight as it always had good loadings both ways.

First world problems

I think Air New Zealand's response is perfectly valid. I've caught that flight in particular and always seems half to three quarters full anyway - it's no different to an Australian direct flight having less demand at a certain time. The flights Curran gets on are funded by the taxpayer so who's to complain really, maybe the Labour party should focus on winning elections and declaring donations properly.


Clare why don't you find something more productive to do?  Air NZ wouldnt cancel a service if it was being used. Clearly no one was using the service so it was....cancelled.



The world Is sorry

Clare: Next time a business has to make a descision  maybe it should be passed by you in case it does not quite fit into your ideal world.

Which part of ''Unfortunately, the ongoing losses we have been incurring on the existing jet services between Auckland and Dunedin mean we have had to make adjustments that ensure that services to Dunedin are sustainable'' didn't you understand?


Dunedin Airport

From what I understand its not economically viable to operate a late evening service into Dunedin because it requires a crew to overnight in the city. That costs too much. Unfortunately, Dunedin lacks the tourist and business market to make the growth of jet services in to the city economic. I think we are going to have to get used to more ATR services to Christchurch and Wellington to connect with services to Auckland. Also, I think we shouldn't be surprised if Virgin and Air NZ suspend international services from Dunedin Airport in the near future.
From what I understand, the economic viability of these services is marginal when you take into account the additional aviation security and customs service costs for a small number of international flights.
Dunedin is becoming predominantly a regional airport, whereas Christchurch and Queenstown are focus airports and traffic continues to grow. If Dunedin wants a bigger slice of the aviation market and to secure its future as an international gateway, it needs to boost its population and demand from tourists wishing to come here. 

Sustainable business

It appears Clare Curran hasnt a clue when it comes to sustainable business . No company can continue to absorb losses . The Airline industry at least, can redirect flights and infrastructure to keep a return on investment. Curran should concentrate in a similar vein and change her IT/emailing specialists before she completely sabotages the Labour Party .Kind of think she isnt going to be around next term if Labour want to get serious.

Who cares?

Much ado about nothing from Clare again. Do us all a favour and give up your seat... please.

Dollars needed - not words

All the 'speaking up' in the world will do no good, Ms. Curran. You really need to be asking 'the people' to buy tickets.

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