23 August 2014

More from Gisborne

Gisborne business leaders are collaborating with Air New Zealand representatives on a push to boost tourism and reduce air fares for flights connecting Gisborne with the nation’s capital. Air NZ flies from Gisborne Airport to both Wellington and Auckland but the use of smaller 19-seat aircraft on the Wellington route rather than the 50-seat Q300 aircraft used on the Auckland route, means it has been more expensive to travel between Gisborne and Wellington. It costs up to $928 (plus tax) to fly same-day return between Wellington and Gisborne at the top fare, compared to $738 (plus tax) between Gisborne and Auckland. However, Gisborne Chamber of Commerce is hoping to change that. Chamber president Trevor Helson said Air NZ had recently joined the chamber, with a desire to be more engaged with regional areas. Mr Helson said membership would allow Air NZ to work with the community to provide the best services they can. “Air NZ sees a relationship with the chamber as a good way to facilitate this. “It is recognised by Air New Zealand that the cost and frequency of flights to Wellington are not optimum and more work needs to be done.. “The Gisborne chamber had already identified this as a priority and will work closely with them to make Gisborne more accessible by air, especially from Wellington. The chamber welcomes the more inclusive approach now taken and, along with Eastland Community Trust, will push hard to get air fares that make sense and are clearly not artificially high just because there is no competition. “This situation has gone on for far too long and the region has suffered because of it. The experiences with introducing the Q300s to Auckland has shown that there is potential to grow the service if sensible prices are available. There is no reason why the same cannot happen to Wellington.” Over the past full financial year 134,450 passengers travelled through Gisborne Airport, which saw 7723 aircraft landings from Auckland and Wellington. Air New Zealand regional affairs manager Ian Collier said the company was committed to providing air services to and from Gisborne. Mr Collier said it was committed to building strong relationships with local stakeholders such as Tourism Eastland and Gisborne Chamber of Commerce and its members, to further drive demand for Gisborne services and promote inbound tourism. “We view our membership of the chamber as an important link between our business and local business, and are committed to working closely with the chamber for collective benefit. The smaller aircraft in our fleet that serve Gisborne cost more per seat to operate than the larger aircraft in our fleet. This is reflected in airfare pricing.” Air NZ was working to upgrade services to larger aircraft on routes where demand was able to support the extra seat capacity — provided this sat within the limitations of overall fleet management.

1 comment:

  1. Great to see that from Mid Feb all of the flights from GIS to AKL will be on Q300,s. All we need now is a Q300 flight between GIS & WLG