Kiwi air links boom - Who's flying here now?

Fasten your seatbelts, kiwis: our airline connections to the rest of the world are improving and quite dramatically lately.

Here's a look at the new airlines and destinations, offering a huge range of new travel options.

A number of global carriers have made big announcements about routes into and out of New Zealand lately. Not only do we have more choice, but airfares are getting cheaper and the level of onboard luxury is improving.

American Airlines

Just this week, American Airlines said it would slash prices on the Auckland-Los Angeles route, releasing limited highly competitive $799 return fares for later this year.

Passengers from Wellington and Christchurch can travel via Auckland for another $100 each. The Wellington travel period is from October 17 to December 15 and the Christchurch window between October 15 and November 30.

AirAsia X

Just last week, budget carrier AirAsia X held a big event in Auckland and it has started a service that will substantially boost capacity to the Gold Coast and on the airline's home base, Malaysia.

The airline launched with $99 promotional economy fares from Auckland to the Gold Coast and $249 to Kuala Lumpur with travel agents predicting the increase in capacity will keep a lid on prices to both destinations.

AirAsia X's network covers Southeast Asia, North Asia, India, Australia and now New Zealand. Its key hubs are in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Jakarta, Bali, Bangkok, Delhi, Bengaluru, Manila and Tokyo.

This will provide more choice for New Zealanders travelling to those destinations and capacity for tourists from Malaysia, India and Indonesia, markets which are growing rapidly.


The Dubai-headquartered airline's non-stop to Auckland-Dubai route means passengers can knock more than three hours off a flight which had been routed through Australia previously and more significantly on to Europe. The new direct flight was launched as the world's longest, taking more than 16 hours to get from here up to Dubai.

Hawaiian Airlines

This airline is offering highly competitive deals. The Honolulu-based airline has been flying to Auckland for about three years but already sees the potential for more capacity.

Air New Zealand

Our national carrier started flying to Buenos Aires and Houston in December and begins seasonal flights to Vietnam this winter. From June to October, Air New Zealand will fly three times a week from Auckland to Ho Chi Minh City's Tan Son Nhat International Airport with the potential to expand the season in subsequent years.

Philippine Airlines

Philippine Airlines is now flying to Auckland from Manila, with the potential to bring nearly 65,000 tourists a year to New Zealand. It will be the first time the airline has operated to New Zealand. Philippine Airlines will operate four days a week using an Airbus A320 with a stopover in Cairns, Australia.

Anne Gibson

Property editor of the NZ Herald

Thursday, 31 March 2016