By the end of the year, New Zealand’s national carrier is set to launch direct flights between Manila and Auckland. In time for celebrating 50 years of diplomatic relations between New Zealand and Philippines, this project is set to boost connectivity in time between the two nations.
Air New Zealand announced on Wednesday a further expansion in its Pacific Rim network, saying the new year-round service beginning December would operate three times a week using its Boeing 767-300 aircraft.
Air New Zealand chief executive Christopher Luxon said he was confident the service would attract Filipinos. “The Filipino population in New Zealand has more than tripled since 2001 and is now the third largest Asian ethnic group, with around 40,000 Filipino residents in New Zealand. The number of visitors from the Philippines also continued to grow rapidly, up more than 20 percent in the past year alone, so we’re anticipating that demand for this service would be steady in both directions.”
He said the non-stop service would be more convenient to travelers since flight time between Manila and Auckland is just around 10 and a half hours. The current option takes about two and a half hours more.
Tickets for this direct service would go on sale middle of this year, subject to government and regulatory approvals.
This new service gives travelers between Manila and Auckland additional flight options. Last year, Philippine Airlines also launched a four-times-a-week flight to Auckland, with a one-hour stopover at Cairns in Queensland, Australia.
photo from airlinereporter.com