31 July 2016

Air New Zealand Routes changes

There were three route changes for Air New Zealand today.

The most significant was Air New Zealand withdrawing completely from Whanganui. Bombardier Q300 ZK-NEP operated the late afternoon Auckland-Whanganui service (NZ8759/Airlink 759) and the final service out of Whanganui (NZ8762/Airlink 762). The final Auckland-Whanganui service was operated by Q300 ZK-NEE (NZ8757/Airlink757). The aircraft then positioned back to Auckland as Airlink 984. 

Whanganui was first served by the national carrier, (in those days NAC) on the 1st of November 1954. On that day flight 301 Douglas DC-3 ZK-AYK "Parekareka", commanded by Capt. G.W. Miles, with Second-officer J.W. Winefield, left Auckland at 8.20am, New Plymouth at 9.45am, and arrived at Wanganui at 10.25am. It left Wanganui at 10.40am, and Palmerston North at 11.20am, to arrive at Paraparaumu, (Wellington's airport at the time), at 11.55am. Later in the afternoon Douglas DC-3 ZK-APA 'Puweto' arrived from Paraparaumu and Palmerston North before departing for New Plymouth and Auckland.

Friendship services to Wanganui began on the 22nd of May 1961.

Tomorrow Air Chathams begin Whanganui-Auckland services.

Today Air New Zealand also pulled off the Christchurch-Blenheim service. Bombardier Q300 ZK-NEK operated the final Christchurch-Blenheim service (NZ8784/Airlink 784) and return Blenheim Christchurch service (NZ8297/Airlink 297).

Eagle Air commenced Blenheim-Christchurch services on the 29th of October 1996 initially using Metroliners and later Beech 1900s until the 1st of May this year. The Eagle service was replaced by Air Nelson Bombardier Q300s but loadings did not justify the 50-seaters leading to their withdrawal today.

Tomorrow Sounds Air begin Blenheim-Christchurch services.

Finally Eagle Air pulled out of Gisborne today. The final Eagle service was operated from Gisborne to Wellington  by Beech 1900 ZK-EAN (NZ2237/Eagle 237). The Eagle service has been replaced with Air Nelson Bombardier Q300s. The first Wellington-Gisborne service was operated by ZK-NEF (NZ8238/Airlink 238).


  1. CVA701 and SDA651 are airborne!!!
    Good luck Air Chats and Sounds Air!!!

  2. BHE-CHC was also operated by the EMB-110 before the Beech 1900 arrived.

    1. I think you will find it was Eagle Metroliners rather than Bandeirantes

    2. The Bandits were used for quite some time, have many photos of them in CHC operating the service.

    3. Yes, I recall the bandit on CHC-BHE as well. Although the metro was used for AKL from the routes inception. IIRC prior to Eagle operating this route, Air Nelson had either intended to or did operate BHE-CHC with a Metro in the early 90's. I think the route did kick off but was short lived - perhaps someone with a better memory could confirm this?