24 April 2017

Sounds Air Ups Frequency



Sounds Air has announced additional Friday flights from Blenheim to both Christchurch and Napier.

The new Christchurch flight will depart Blenheim at 11:15am to arrive at 12:05pm. The return flight will depart Christchurch at 12:35pm to arrive at Blenheim at 1:25pm. The additional flight will mean there are 16 flights a week between the two centres


The new Napier flight will depart Blenheim at 2:15pm to arrive at 3:10pm. The return flight will depart Napier at 3:30pm to arrive at Blenheim at 4:30pm. The additional flight will mean there are 6 flights a week between the two centres



The increased schedule is effective from Friday the 5th of May.



Sun, Moon and Stars

Air Chathams' Whakatane Metroliner with the setting sun shining on its sun at Whakatane on 21 April 2017.

Sporting the moon and stars, the Starship Air Ambulance Beech Super King Air ZK-SSH at Whakatane on 21 April 2017

About to be put to bed, White Island Flights' Cessna 182 ZK-OFC at Whakatane on 21 April 2017

Waiting it's next training mission, Aerohire's Cessna 152 ZK-MDS at Whakatane on 22 April 2017

22 April 2017

Fun Flying at Whakatane

If you are in Whakatane and want to try out some fun flying go and have a chat to Peter Rutledge out at AEROHIRE at Whakatane Airport... He is one of those genuine guys who loves to talk planes and flying... I had the opportunity to go for a fly over Edgecumbe on Friday just as the sun was going down...

My ride was BRM Aero Bristell LSA ZK-LMR...

Where the river breached... you can see the plug in the stopbank...
The area of the town about the river which was flooded...

Look carefully... the silt in the streets and debris out on the road to be cleared away


A very sedate looking Rangitaiki River
Whale Island
The sun goes down on another day
LMR's front seat



18 April 2017

New Whitianga-North Shore service



Fly Stark's Facebook page has announced that they are starting up a Whitianga to North Shore service - up on a Monday or Tuesday to return on a Friday. Their first trip is next Wednesday 26th April after ANZAC Day.

Interested in flying in a Convair???





This photo was sent to me from Whanganui today... it looks as if the Saab is on heavy maintenance for a few so it gives aviation enthusiasts an opportunity to try out the Convair... 

Bookings can be made at http://www.airchathams.co.nz/

The Air Chathams' website makes it clear what you are flying on!

Go Air Chats!


17 April 2017

Thinking about Hamilton

This on Stuff on my local airport...

Hamilton Airport's passenger numbers are soaring, reversing the previous trend of passenger decline with growing Auckland congestion playing a part. The regional airport is experiencing the strongest year-on-year growth in any given month in the last four to five years. March had the highest monthly passenger numbers recorded within the last four years at 3200 flying from the airport. CEO Mark Morgan said the bottleneck over the Bombays was among the reasons for the increased passenger numbers. "Getting to Auckland Airport from the Waikato is problematic. In terms of the Southern Motorway, you can leave at 5am for an 8am flight and it is questionable if you will arrive on time. "Business people are reconsidering. Historically they may have driven to Auckland to catch a flight to Wellington or Christchurch but, because of the unpredictable traffic half of their business day could be spent on the road." Morgan believes the airport is also benefiting from a more positive economy, both regionally and nationally. "I think there's an increase in tourism and we've seen some benefits from that. We've seen an increase in tour group activity in and out of Hamilton Airport." There was year-on-year growth from July 2016 to March 2017  of 8 per cent on Air New Zealand services to Palmerston North, Wellington and Christchurch. In March 2017 compared to last year there was 20 per cent growth on the same routes for Air New Zealand. Some recent research by the airport has found that its profile is almost equal between business and leisure traveller. "Our view, before our research, would have been that we were more heavily weighted towards business travellers than leisure. "It will certainly change the way we market the airport." Hamilton Airport has flights to all the main business centres apart from Auckland after Air New Zealand withdrew that service just over a year ago. Given the problematic accessibility to and from Auckland, Morgan is keen to see this service reinstated at some point. "Twelve months ago passengers may not have considered flying from Hamilton to Auckland because it was considered driveable, but now the drive could take anywhere between two to three hours so the Hamilton to Auckland flight would have greater appeal. "We will continue to advocate with Air New Zealand to increase frequency and scheduling. I think the airport is in a much, much stronger position than it was two or three years ago. "We remain very focused on the regional airport strategy, but I think the challenges Auckland faces, with regards to traffic and infrastructure, will create a lot of future opportunity for Hamilton Airport." Hamilton stopped being an international airport in 2012 and  it has very clear direction from the shareholders and the board that  its focus is as a strong regional airport. So there is no consideration to attempting to woo back international services for the time being. Morgan wants the airport to be more than a place people fly from but also a destination, where people use the venue for conferences or parent groups who can use the cafe Mavis Lounge.


So my thoughts...

1. "March had the highest monthly passenger numbers recorded within the last four years at 3200 flying from the airport." 

I don't think so... 

Given in May there are 24 direct ATR flights to Christchurch each week... that's 1584 seats per week!
Given in May there are 33 direct ATR flights and 6 direct Q300 flights to Wellington each week... that's 2478 seats per week
Given in May there are 10 direct Q300 flights to Palmerston North each week... that's 500 seats per week
Note... It looks as if Q300 flights out of Hamilton have recently been replaced by ATRs so that's a higher number of seats...

If its 3200 people flying out of Hamilton per month it would be a load factor of 15%
I'd say 3200 flying out of Hamilton each week in March makes more sense! That would give a 70% load factor but my observation are Hamilton flights are always fairly full

2. Morgan said the bottleneck over the Bombays was among the reasons for the increased passenger numbers. "Getting to Auckland Airport from the Waikato is problematic. In terms of the Southern Motorway, you can leave at 5am for an 8am flight and it is questionable if you will arrive on time. "Business people are reconsidering. Historically they may have driven to Auckland to catch a flight to Wellington or Christchurch but, because of the unpredictable traffic half of their business day could be spent on the road."

Personally I don't think so... Sure, some people were flying via Auckland when Eagle Air were operating Hamilton-Auckland... in fact the Eagle flights were often full as people connected to and from both domestic and international flights. The domestics would largely be southbound and those passengers now would take the flights straight out of Hamilton. But I would argue Waikato people have not been driving to Auckland to catch a domestic flight for some time...  

3. Given the problematic accessibility to and from Auckland, Morgan is keen to see this service reinstated at some point. "Twelve months ago passengers may not have considered flying from Hamilton to Auckland because it was considered driveable, but now the drive could take anywhere between two to three hours so the Hamilton to Auckland flight would have greater appeal.

Barrier Air tried and failed... I think they needed to enter the market immediately after Eagle stopped... They didn't, and when they did enter the market they didn't advertise well. People need to know there is a service... People need to be reminded of the of how hideous getting to and from Auckland Airport is, especially in the morning and later afternoon and evening. People need to be convinced the service is reliable! People need to be convinced it is worth changing airline at Auckland - no interline. 

Interesting Air Chathams did AKL-HLZ on Thursday with a Metroliner pre Cyclone Cook. Sat around at HLZ for over an hour and then flew back to AKL. One wonders if they were checking out HLZ and HLZ Airport were checking out Air Chats!

4. I think the airport is in a much, much stronger position than it was two or three years ago. "We remain very focused on the regional airport strategy, but I think the challenges Auckland faces, with regards to traffic and infrastructure, will create a lot of future opportunity for Hamilton Airport."

I agree. Hamilton City grew by 20,000 people in the last three years! The market is growing every day. If Jetstar remain in the regional market I suspect they will come to Hamilton at some point... after all it is now NZ's 4th largest city and that will increase the number of passengers!

5. Hamilton stopped being an international airport in 2012 and  it has very clear direction from the shareholders and the board that  its focus is as a strong regional airport. So there is no consideration to attempting to woo back international services for the time being. 

Hamilton being an International will make sense only when the road access to Auckland is poor. 


16 April 2017

WOW

Over at Tauranga on 14 April 2017 was Tecnam P2008 ZK-WOW

Also, I final got a full sun shot of Sunair's Piper Aztec ZK-ECM... off to Great Barrier Island or Whitianga

15 April 2017

Tokoroa last Sunday

Maule ZK-JDT at Tokoroa on 9 April 2017

More often than not I don't call into Tokoroa airfield as the gate is often locked and if not there is nothing to photograph and sadly there are no longer scheduled services to Tokoroa... In its heyday as a forestry town, however, a number of airlines tried to make a go of a scheduled service to Tokoroa...

James Aviation


Auckland Aero Club

 

 
 
Company Profile
Air North's Tokoroa air service



 


10 April 2017

Add one Cessna 172...


Sunair has had another Cessna 172 added to their fleet, namely  Cessna 172S ZK-COS (c/n 172S9752).

Sunair also operates Cessna 172s ZK-CBZ, DHN, DPN and TAB.

For those who have save copies of my airline profiles, my post on Sunair has been updated to incorporate the airline's developments and changes over the last 12 months...
http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.co.nz/2011/02/sunair-still-shining-25-years-on.html 

06 April 2017

More Dunedin Services


Air New Zealand is adding a new return jet service between Dunedin and Auckland from July. The Sunday flight will be on the airline's 171-seat Airbus A320 aircraft, and will boost the number of seats on the route by 5 per cent. The service will start from July 9 and depart Auckland for Dunedin at 9.15am, returning at 11.40am. Air New Zealand chief revenue officer Cam Wallace said the airline has added 25 per cent more seats between Auckland and Dunedin in the past six months. "It's fantastic to see demand for services to and from Dunedin continue to grow and we're confident we can sustain an enhanced schedule that benefits visitors and locals alike." Dunedin Airport chief executive Richard Roberts said the extra jet flight, which follows the airline's move to triple daily A320 services between Dunedin and Wellington last October, was excellent news for the region. "The city has worked alongside Air New Zealand to stimulate and drive demand for services to and from Dunedin so it's really satisfying to see yet more capacity added." Air New Zealand has also rescheduled its Thursday and Friday evening flights between Christchurch and Dunedin to give more choice to customers travelling at peak periods, and has added an extra 68-seat ATR service on Sunday evenings.