Air New Zealand plans trans-Tasman Boeing 787-9 flights

Air New Zealand plans trans-Tasman Boeing 787-9 flights

Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane will see a brand new Boeing 787-9 appearing on flights from Auckland later this year as Air New Zealand beds down its first Dreamliner.

The Kiwi carrier will take delivery of the first of ten 787-9s in July, with that plane to begin flying a daily Auckland-Perth route from October 15th.

However, Air New Zealand has confirmed that the Dreamliner will be temporarily rostered onto trans-Tasman flights to Australia's three east coast cities before the Perth service commences.

The 787-9 flights to Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane will start “sometime in July or August, definitely in September” says Captain David Morgan, Air New Zealand's chief flight operations officer.

"We will put the aircraft into service across the Tasman for crew training and also to ensure that the aeroplane is integrated seamlessly into our network” Morgan tells Australian Business Traveller.

“We’re certainly not going to have it sitting around on the ground after the delivery in July!”

The Dreamliner will certainly stand out at Aussie airports, as it will be painted in Air New Zealand's iconic 'all black' livery.

However, unlike Jetstar's Melbourne-Gold Coast and Melbourne-Cairns runs for its first Dreamliner, Morgan says Air New Zealand's trans-Tasman 787-9 services won't be firmly scheduled.

Passengers won't be able to book a particular flight across the pond with certainty that it will be the Boeing 787, "it will just depend on the day" Morgan says.

That 'surprise and delight' aspect will prove a treat for lucky trans-Tasman travellers.

We're hoping that top-tier members of Air New Zealand's Airpoints frequent flyer scheme, and the Velocity program of its partner Virgin Australia, will benefit from upgrades to the lie-flat business class beds or even the new premium economy seats.

Flights from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne to Auckland are only around three hours long, but that's no reason not to enjoy every bit of extra comfort you can soak up.

See: Photos, video: Air New Zealand's Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner seats

Australian Business Traveller visited Auckland as a guest of Boeing.

Follow Australian Business Traveller on Twitter: we're @AusBT

David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.
 

5 comments

  • Broderick Boyd

    brobro

    6 Jan, 2014 09:29 am

    Just depends on the day? Pretty casual response for those who are wanting to sample the aircraft out of Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

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  • David Flynn

    David

    6 Jan, 2014 09:41 am

    Broderick: I think you will find AirNZ is doing this less for trans-Tas travellers who want to 'sample' the aircraft than for their own benefit (in terms of getting 'up to speed' with the 787). I'd love to see a locked-down schedule like Jetstar did, with certain flights decreed as Boeing 787 flights, but this can come with the risk that people book THAT particular flight and the 787 is a no-show... I'm sure AirNZ figure it's better not to promise and then have the 787 turn up, than let people down.

    That said, I would not be surprised if many very savy frequent flyers nut out the likely 787 flights closer to the start of these 'trials' or once they begin.

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  • Broderick Boyd

    brobro

    6 Jan, 2014 03:02 pm

    Hi David, wasnt having a go at the reporting. Just thought it was a casual response from AirNZ as I would love to book a day flight from SYD to AKL but dont want to risk a no-show. Thanks for the clarification however.

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  • David Flynn

    David

    6 Jan, 2014 03:39 pm

    Hey Broderick: no worries mate, I didn't read your comment as anything to do the reporting, I was just looking at from the issue from AirNZ's side... and there's a whole interesting issue over how airlines should manage 'special' flights like 787 runs. I recall UA's first domestic 787 services were packed with aviation enthusiasts and others who'd booked that flight just for the 787, of course when something else trundled up to the gate they were NOT happy... but UA had not shared any info in advance that the plane was swapped.

    We have an article which talks about this whole 'plane swap' issue at http://www.ausbt.com.au/when-an-airline-swaps-planes-before-your-flight-where-do-you-stand

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  • Broderick Boyd

    brobro

    6 Jan, 2014 04:19 pm

    Ironic you mention the UA issue. I was scheduled to fly out of Denver last year on a 787, however a 777 showed up. So dissapointing.

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23 Jul, 2019 11:17 am

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