The Eagle Air Beech 1900D fleet will be retired by August 2016
|Eagle Air Beech 1900D ZK-EAB at BHE in happier times ©nzompilot|
Air New Zealand will invest in 4 additional new ATR 72-600 aircraft allowing the Q300 fleet to replace the 1900D on services to ports that can sustain the 50 seaters.
“This is good news for the following 12 towns: Kerikeri, Whangarei, Tauranga, Hamilton, Rotorua, Gisborne, Taupo, Wanganui, Palmerston North, Blenheim, Hokitika and Timaru. Each will progressively move to 50 seat aircraft and benefit from fare reductions.”
However Whakatane, Kaitaia & Westport will no longer be serviced by Air New Zealand, while four other regional pairings will also go.
Unfortunately there are a small number of regional routes where customer demand simply cannot sustain larger 50 seat aircraft and Air New Zealand will therefore suspend the following services from April 2015: Kaitaia – Auckland; Whakatane – Auckland; Whangarei – Wellington; Taupo – Wellington; Westport – Wellington and Palmerston North – Nelson. Hamilton – Auckland will also be suspended from February 2016.
Air New Zealand will also introduce regional "Gotta Go" fares and restructure its bereavement fares, to counter the wave of public criticism of high last minute fares.
From 20 November customers dealing with a bereavement or unexpected critical medical situation will have the security of knowing they can travel domestically at short notice for a fixed price of $169 for a single sector or $249 for two or more sectors. These fares can be booked up to seven days in advance of travel for a close family bereavement or up to 48 hours in advance of travel for a critical medical situation.
Gotta Go fares will be available from February 1st 2015
Read more on the announcement via the Air New Zealand Press release HERE