Air New Zealand Leases Additional Aircraft to Meet Increased Demand
Leasing to Accommodate Soaring Travel Demand
In response to a surge in travel bookings following the opening of quarantine-free travel arrangements between New Zealand, Australia, and the Cook Islands, Air New Zealand is set to lease an additional aircraft. The airline plans to lease an extra Boeing 737-800, with the expectation that it will be operational by the end of 2021.
Expanded Fleet for Domestic and Trans-Tasman Services
The leased aircraft is slated for use on domestic routes. This strategic move will allow Air New Zealand’s existing domestic fleet to be deployed for trans-Tasman and Pacific Island services. The decision to lease an additional aircraft is part of the airline’s broader recovery strategy from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has wreaked havoc on the global aviation industry.
Return to Pre-Covid Capacity Still a Distant Goal
Despite the addition of the leased aircraft, Air New Zealand does not anticipate a return to pre-Covid capacity on its trans-Tasman and Pacific routes until at least the end of 2022. Although the quarantine-free travel arrangements have boosted bookings, any changes to these arrangements could potentially impact the airline’s operations and capacity to meet demand.
Smaller Aircraft, Efficient Services
The leased Boeing 737-800 is a single-aisle aircraft, smaller than the twin-aisle aircraft typically used on trans-Tasman and Pacific routes. However, the airline asserts that the aircraft’s smaller size will not affect its ability to meet the increased travel demand. The use of a smaller aircraft for domestic routes and larger ones for trans-Tasman and Pacific routes is seen as an efficient deployment of resources.
- Air New Zealand is leasing an additional Boeing 737-800 to meet increased travel demand, stemming from the opening of quarantine-free travel with Australia and the Cook Islands.
- The leased aircraft will be used on domestic routes, freeing up the current domestic fleet for trans-Tasman and Pacific Island services.
- The airline does not expect to return to pre-Covid capacity on these routes until at least the end of 2022.
- The leasing of an additional aircraft is part of Air New Zealand’s recovery strategy from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.
- Changes to quarantine-free travel arrangements could potentially impact the airline’s operations.
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