Bigger planes and a shorter flight are on offer between
Rotorua and Queenstown, via Christchurch, now Air New Zealand
has committed to an improved service over the summer.
Rotorua International Airport chief executive George White
said Air New Zealand Boeing 737 flights from Rotorua to
Queenstown, via Christchurch, resumed in Rotorua on October
27 and would run until March 23.
Mr White said Air New Zealand's announcement was the result
of many months of hard work by Rotorua tourism providers, the
airport and Destination Rotorua Marketing.
One of the airline's three daily twin-engine turboprop
short-haul regional airliner services on the
Rotorua-Christchurch-Queenstown route has been replaced by
the Boeing 737 for some of the flights this summer.
Mr White said the "high-season upgrade" to a Boeing 737
service meant a 27 per cent increase in capacity between
Rotorua and Christchurch and a 14 per cent increase between
Christchurch and Queenstown.
Air New Zealand Australasia group general manager Bruce
Parton said the company was pleased to reinstate a jet
service linking two of New Zealand's most popular tourism
destinations for the peak summer season.
"Customers booking on the 737 service between Rotorua and
Queenstown will also enjoy a reduction in the total time of
their journey of approximately half an hour," he said.
Destination Rotorua marketing general manager Oscar Nathan
hoped the Rotorua community could support the service and
spread the word to friends and family that flights were
available to help the destination make the most of the
increased flight capacity.
"With the flights starting a little over three weeks ago, it
will take time to build up demand as the flight is increasing
capacity by as much as 27 per cent between Rotorua and
"The intention is that on top of the forward promotion
already undertaken, coupled with the economy improving and
Christchurch connections coming back to normal levels,
bookings will build over time and the service will become
more viable and permanent."
Mr Nathan said while it was great to see Air New Zealand
showing further confidence in Rotorua it was disappointing
the service had not immediately hit the levels of demand
"But in the current environment this can be expected and as a
result some 737 flights have reverted to traditional aircraft
when the larger capacity jet service is not required," he
- By Matthew Martin of The Daily Post