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Jetstar flights will boost Cook Islands' Economy

Jetstar flights will boost Cook Islands' Economy

Jetstar’s announcement today that it will fly direct from Auckland to Rarotonga from 22 March 2016 will be a significant boost for the Cook Islands’ economy - generating millions of dollars of on-island revenue.

“This is positive and exciting news for the Cook Islands,” said Graeme West, General Manager of Cook Islands Tourism Corporation. “Tourism is the country's main industry, and the backbone of the economy, providing approximately 60% of GDP. The spinoff for the nation and for local business of a new airline adding an additional 25,000 return seats a year will be fantastic.”

New Zealand visitors represent 67% of total arrivals into the Cook Islands. “Our 82,000 Kiwi visitors a year are vital and the increased seat capacity from Jetstar will certainly help visitor numbers to grow,” said Mr West.

He said a journey to the Cook Islands is the ultimate South Pacific experience, which Jetstar’s low fares would enable more Kiwis to enjoy.

At 32 km in circumference, Rarotonga is the vibrant hub of the Cook Islands. It has a wide range of scenery, activities, places to eat, accommodation, and transport. Three Cook Islands beaches are ranked by TripAdvisor among the best 10 in the South Pacific. Aitutaki, often called the Honeymoon Island and renowned for its spectacular beauty, is about 200km north of Rarotonga and 45 minutes by air.

Mr West said Rarotonga and Aitutaki are easy destinations for Kiwis. “We use the New Zealand dollar and many New Zealand products, so there is a comfortable familiarity for Kiwis. Our tourism infrastructure is well established and offers a wide range of choices for accommodation, restaurants and activities.”

Jetstar’s regional network in New Zealand is attractive to people living outside the Auckland region. The international flight times provide convenient connections with domestic flights. Connecting services to Auckland are available from Wellington, Christchurch, Queenstown, Napier, Nelson, New Plymouth and Palmerston North.

ENDS

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