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Air NZ announces second London service via Asia

5 April 2006

Air New Zealand announces second London service via Asia

Air New Zealand today announced plans to launch a second daily service between Auckland and London flying via Hong Kong to London Heathrow Airport.

Commencing on 28 October 2006, the second service doubles Air New Zealand's current capacity between New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

"Demand for travel between the United Kingdom and New Zealand has grown significantly since we first launched a daily service in 1998, with annual arrivals to New Zealand increasing by more than 10 percent on average," said Air New Zealand Group General Manager International Airlines, Ed Sims.

"Over this time we have invested heavily to promote New Zealand as a destination, and this year, we will be increasing our current advertising and promotional spend by 50 percent in the United Kingdom and Europe markets to ensure we drive further growth," he said.

"The additional capacity will leave us better placed to take advantage of the demand we have created, especially during peak seasons when our flights are 90 to 100 percent full. More excitingly, we can stimulate new demand with higher frequency and new routing options, including the world's only current round-the-world service on one airline.

"We will also be the only Star Alliance carrier to operate between Hong Kong and London, which is fantastic news for our Star partners and customers," said Mr Sims.

Air New Zealand will operate the route utilising newly refurbished Boeing 747-400 aircraft. The 393-seat aircraft includes 46 lie-flat Business Premier seats, 23 Pacific Premium Economy seats and 324 seats in Pacific Economy.

Mr Sims said Air New Zealand's research has found New Zealanders prefer to fly their national carrier to and from United Kingdom.

"Kiwis have recognised that one of the world's longest journeys is more enjoyable on our new long-haul service featuring lie-flat beds in Business Premier, extra comfort and legroom in Pacific Premium Economy, and on-demand digital video entertainment and more personal space in every seat," he said.

Air New Zealand will operate the following schedule, subject to timeslot, capacity and regulatory approvals:

Flight No. Schedule Flight Time NZ88 Departs AKL 2359 Arrives HKG 0615+1 11:16 Departs HKG 0815 Arrives LHR 1330+1 13:15

NZ87 Departs LHR 2115 Arrives HKG 1700+1 11:45 Departs HKG 1900 Arrives AKL 1045+1 10:45

"These arrival and departure times offer favourable connectivity at Hong Kong and Heathrow airports. The transit time of two hours in Hong Kong is equivalent to our Los Angeles stopover, and is one of the shortest for travel between London and Auckland," said Mr Sims. Sales for the second United Kingdom service are available from today. Return economy class airfares from Auckland to London start from $2615 excluding airport taxes.

ENDS


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