20 August 2018

Kāpiti Coast Service Takes Off

Air Chathams launched its new Kāpiti air service this morning. Flight 3C 641 has just landed at Auckland after getting airborne from Papaparaumu's Kāpiti Coast Airport at 6.54am en route to Auckland. The first flight was flown under the command of Captains Craig Emeny and Duane Emeny with the lovely Etevihe Sakaria the flight attendant looking after the passengers. The inaugural service was operated by Air Chathams Saab 340B ZK-CIZ which positioned to Paraparaumu on Sunday 19 August 2018 as flight 3C 340. The positioning flight was welcomed by a powhiri from the local iwi and local dignatories.

All tucked up for the night, Air Chathams' Saab 340B ZK-CIZ at Paraparaumu on 19 August 2018 ready for the first flight on the 20th.

Flight 3C 641, Air Chathams' first Kāpiti Coast to Auckland service departs Paraparaumu on 20 August 2018

Air Chathams will operate three daily return flights between the Kāpiti each weekday with two northbound flights and one southbound on Saturdays and one northbound and two southbound services on Sundays.

Air Chathams' Kāpiti Coast schedule

While the Air Chathams reservations system show seats available on all flights over the next two weeks the route is sure to grow. Air Chathams has shown a strong community focus towards the centres it service, a go the extra mile customer service and a realiable service. Word will get around!

Air Chathams' arrivals at Auckland for early this morning

Competition with Air New Zealand and Jetstar's cheap flights out of Wellington and to a lesser extent Palmerston North will be the challenge. The big plus is the convenience of flying out of Paraparumu saving an hours travel either way. For most people on the Kāpiti Coast it is easy to drop people off or pick up at the airport saving the parking fees. I understand the Kāpiti Coast Airport also charges parking fees. Air Chathams also offers a good range of cheap fares. Business timed flights are more expensive but so are the competitors' fares out of Wellington and Palmerston North.

Another key to the success of the new service will be getting Auckland people to use it. While the local residents on the Kāpiti Coast will know about the new local air service Aucklanders won't. I also wonder about the demand for business people wanting to fly into the Kāpiti Coast. To that end Air Chathams will do well to encourage the Kāpiti Coast as a destination for conferences and leisure.

Air Chathams are also looking to develop an air service to Norfolk Island.

My profile on Air Chathams has been updated : 

For links to posts on other airlines that have flown to Paraparaumu see :


  1. To be fair. I don't think Air NZ ever said anything about loss making. Yes it was all to do with positioning of finite resources and Kapiti just didn't make sense for a route that was never really going to grow in "Air NZ" world.

  2. Here is an arm chair idea...

    Aero Commander 690......
    Whangas to Masterton to Wellington Masterton to Auckland business commute.... gives a connection to Wellington via Masterton and the handful of business people from Masterton to Wellington can get a quick journey vis versa Wellington to Masterton business people... then a dedicated business run up to Auckland for the 'majority' of the business patronage.... surly a great way to try a market test the waters and see from there... beats having a aircraft sit around all day surely....

    1. Commander isn't for commercial usage, only used for Craig and other senior staff to get to places. Only got the Metroliner, Saab and Convair for commercial usage.

      MRO service would be better suited by the metroliner at first, Especially if WHK goes to Saab usage, means both Metroliners spare. Only to AKL though, WLG is too close i would think for a service, if anyone would pick up that route would be Sounds Air with the caravan.

      My 2 cents anyway

  3. The Aero Commander would be awfully expensive to operate, hence not cheap fares.

    A Metroliner doing an overnight service like Air NZ operated might work... But I suspect the runway width maybe an issue. Compare these runway length and widths...

    MRO 1205x23
    PPQ`1187x45 (100 metre starters)
    WHK 1280x30.5
    WAG 1372x45

    1. I'm not sure a metro would work into Masterton due to the reasonably steep climb gradients on the SIDs which wouldn't go down too well assymetric. Not to mention runway length being a problem at higher weights. I stand to be corrected though.