12 June 2016
Some thoughts on Sounds Air's proposed Christchurch service
I am pleased that Sounds Air are looking seriously at picking up the Blenheim-Christchurch route. I think with Sounds Air's reasonable standard fares it could well be a good run for them as long as they use a Pilatus PC12 on it.
I imagine, however, that expanding to Christchurch will not be an easy decision for them not in the least being the facilities at Christchurch for regional airlines. While Sounds Air are well set up in Wellington and there are check in counters for regional airlines in Auckland there is no obvious provision for such in Christchurch. Sounds Air will need to set up a check-in counter and have access to the tarmac for the luggage to be taken to the plane. Given the Beech 1900s parked a mile way from the main terminal this is not going to be easy.
The other issue I suspect will be the cost of such facilities. Obviously the more flights into Christchurch the more these costs are spread out. So it poses the question, will it only be a Blenheim Christchurch service or will Christchurch be the next hub for Sounds Air? Personally I think Christchurch-Paraparaumu could work. Another commenter on this blog has suggested Christchurch-Wanaka. I'm not so sure about that one. Time will tell.
Posted by Steve L at 4:12 PM