Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu) has announced it will open a new international gateway to New Zealand with new nonstop service between Honolulu and Auckland three days weekly beginning on March 13, 2013.
The company’s market research indicates that Hawaii is an underserved market for New Zealand, as tourism figures show there are currently 30 percent fewer visitor arrivals coming from New Zealand than in 1999 when more nonstop flights were offered between the two destinations. In addition, New Zealand residents made more than one million trips to the South Pacific and Asia in 2011.
Hawaiian’s new service will add more than 40,000 seats annually between Auckland and Hawaii.
According to Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA), the New Zealand market is a strong source of visitors for Hawaii. In 2011, Hawaii received 20,730 arrivals from New Zealand – an increase of 15.4% compared to 2010 – which were responsible for generating $38 million in visitor expenditures. Year-to-date through May 2012, arrivals from New Zealand have increased by 5.1% year-over-year.
Hawaiian will operate the Auckland-Honolulu flights using its fleet of wide-body, twin-aisle Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft, seating 264 passengers – 18 in Business Class and 246 in the Main Cabin.
Auckland will be the eighth new destination that Hawaiian has introduced or announced new service to since November 2010, following Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, and Sapporo (October 30, 2012), Japan; Seoul, South Korea; New York City, and Brisbane, Australia (November 27, 2012).
Hawaiian’s growth into new markets and expansion of existing operations in North America has been fueled by its long-haul fleet renewal and expansion program that began in June 2010. Since then, the company has welcomed nine new Airbus A330-200 aircraft to its fleet, and is scheduled to introduce five more A330s into service in 2013.
Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. Boeing 767-3G5 ER N586HA (msn 24259) climbs away from Honolulu International Airport.