Air New Zealand preparing to announce two new international routes

 Air NZ planeAir New Zealand has announced it is in the final stages of evaluating two new long haul flights - but where to exactly?

"We look forward to putting our brand and that of our nation on the map in at least two new international destinations for the airline next year," spokesman Stephen Jones said.

Expecting to make an announcement on the first route before Christmas, he said he is confident that Kiwis will really embrace it.

House of Travel retail director Brent Thomas said the long-haul flights might be somewhere in the Pacific Rim.

"Air New Zealand is building an airline that's servicing the Pacific Rim and point-to-point flying," he said.

He expects the airline would have done a significant amount of study to make sure the routes would be viable, purely based on the cost of setting them up.

Speculating on where it might be going, he said it could be a seasonal flight like their flights to Bali - but we would all just have to wait and see.

With more international carriers coming into New Zealand bringing passengers, he said passenger growth had increased by five per cent.

Air New Zealand was looking for different routes to grow their passenger base and also bring more people into our "beautiful country",  Thomas said.

Air New Zealand's Buenos Aires and Houston services commence operations next month.