Significant capacity boost for Auckland-Perth alliance services

Wednesday 9 May 2012, 4:37PM
By Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand and alliance partner Virgin Australia today announced plans to boost capacity on the busy Auckland-Perth route by more than 20% in the upcoming financial year 

From 3 September, Air New Zealand will replace its 234 seat Boeing 767-300 with a 304 seat Boeing 777-200ER aircraft on its non-stop Auckland-Perth service.

The introduction of the 777-200ER on Auckland-Perth adds another 70 seats on each flight and introduces lie-flat Business Premier beds and Premium Economy to the route for the first time.

Air New Zealand Group General Manager Australasia Bruce Parton says Perth is one of the airline’s fastest growing routes, with a significant increase in demand over the past 12 months.

“Western Australia is the fastest-growing economy in Australia and we’ve seen double-digit growth in visitor arrivals from Perth over the past year, with particularly strong growth over the past quarter.

“This has prompted us, in conjunction with our alliance partner Virgin Australia, to review our schedule and capacity to better match that strong demand from travellers on both sides of the Tasman. We’re confident the 777 will be a very popular choice for this route and that bookings will continue to grow as a result.”

Virgin Australia Group Executive of Alliances Network and Yield Merren McArthur said the use of a larger aircraft supported the airline’s strategy of enhancing services to important corporate and leisure destinations.

“As part of the repositioning of Virgin Australia, one of our key focuses has been ensuring that the growing Perth market is adequately served with appropriate capacity and a first-rate product for business travellers. Together with our new Airbus 330 aircraft, Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand guests will now have the option of lie-flat beds from Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland into Perth, accompanied by premium Business Class service.”

Both Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia offer a range of different fare choices on the Auckland-Perth route, providing options for everyone from freedom travellers to family holidaymakers and business customers.

More than 80 percent of the 30,000 customers Air New Zealand carried from Perth to Auckland last year were heading to New Zealand for leisure, highlighting the attractiveness of New Zealand as a holiday destination.

Tax inclusive seat fares Auckland-Perth start at NZ$519 one way per person, with seat fares from Perth available from AU$500 one way per person.