16 February 2016

Kiwi Regional's first day in Tauranga

Kiwi Regional Airline departed Tauranga for the first time today with a full flight bound for Nelson. Kiwi Regional Airlines chief executive Ewan Wilson said sales of seats on the twice-weekly flights to Nelson and on to Dunedin had been "excellent". "Tauranga is performing well for us against all our other routes, which is fantastic, given we have yet to fly in or out of the city. "Our experience highlights the need for affordable, direct, inter-regional air services in New Zealand, and vindicates our decision to add the Bay of Plenty as one of our key regions," he said. Wilson said Kiwi's SAAB340A aircraft was scheduled to arrive in from Nelson at 11.15am, departing 50 minutes later at 12.05pm. He welcomed members of the public coming to Tauranga Airport to view the aircraft from the terminal. Flights to Nelson with Kiwi depart at 12.05pm every Tuesday and Saturday, and fly on to Dunedin on Tuesdays.

Thanks to the Hairy Mole Rat (SORRY LEFT THE RAT OUT OUT ON THE PHOTOS) who captured the departure of the first Kiwi Regional Airlines' first flight departing Tauranga on its first day of flights to the city on the 16th of February 2016.


Ewan Wilson has taken himself out of the running for the next Hamilton City Council election and will put more of his time into his airline. The 15 year veteran of local body politics said it was time to retire and focus on his business. "Over the last 15 years, it's been wonderful but it's time for a change and it's time to give other people an opportunity to fill the seat," said Wilson. "I'm currently absolutely focussed on both Kiwi Regional and my health board and council obligations and post-October I'll continue to focus on aviation."...

Wilson came under fire for splitting his time between city council and Kiwi Regional Airline where he is the chief executive. In May 2015, Deputy Mayor Gordon Chesterman said Wilson's civic responsibilities were being hampered and called for his head. "Being a city councillor in Hamilton is not a full time job," said Wilson.


  1. Next stop kiwi come to Napier and do services to NZDN

  2. I think they're doing well but they're slowing down. They've got a good livery and plane. But they need another plane! If their Saab cannot operate they're in deep trouble. Also it's currently operating 6 days a week so the flights need to be shared between 2 planes - especially if they want to add routes.

    New routes that could work:
    Napier - Dunedin
    Nelson - New Plymouth
    Nelson - Queenstown
    Nelson - invercargill

    1. It looks like Originair will be flying Nelson-New Plymouth from April. The unannounced flights (OG3405 etc) show up on their booking system with only the full "flexi" fare showing.

  3. KRA is looking at HLZ/NPE which could do NPE/DUD or NPE/NSN/DUD.

    To add any more routes, KRA definitely needs to has a second aircraft.

  4. Which needs substantial new money. Companies Office records show another $200K invested by Mr and Mrs Dommett in January, with 2Cheap Cars Ltd (which has said it wants to exit) still there...but presumably still selling.

  5. KRA NEEDS to get a new plane. It's as simple as that. There's nothing wrong with the current one but it's already being used to it's maximum and it simply cannot do any more flying. My top routes for them to try would be;

    IVC-DUD (tag onto current service)
    DUD-BHE-HLZ (this could work with increasing BHE pop)

    NSN-NPL/NPE are obvious no brainers but Origin would be better for that (if they are still flying!)

  6. I'm going one better... KRA needs a 3 Saab fleet.
    Hold your horses everyone, there is another Saab comming mid year. KRA know that a one plane fleet isn't ideal but it codes have back up. KRA wants to return to ZQN and would use the Tauranga route ad a natural connection. They have been doing some charters in this regard. Also did a stint hauling Huey Lewis and The News to Taupo and back loading passengers to Hamilton to give locals a chance and found a potentially new route on offer.
    Other jilted by Jetstar centres are still negotiating with KRA and Invercargill has been one of them.

  7. I agree that HLZ/TUO is on the cards and so HLZ/NPL.

    Ewan Wilson wants to make HLZ as KRA hub, as HLZ is New Zealand's 4th largest city.

    In the South Island, I suspect that NSN will be KRA southern hub for NSN/DUD, NSN/NPE and NSN/IVC routes.

    Is Air NZ flying DUD/IVC using a Q300 or ATR?

    If not then KRA would do DUD/IVC on a NSN/DUD/IVC route.

    Iam still not sure if ZQN is a viable destination without stepping on Air NZ toes.

    1. None is flying DUD/IVC as it's too close a pairing. They would come into the same issue as DUD/ZQN

    2. HLZ/TUO is a two hour drive... HLZ/NPL three hour... both would have to compete with the car... HLZ/TUO there would be no traffic and HLZ/NPL minimal - again akin to DUD/ZQN