Category Archives: Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand’s first domestic Airbus A321 touches down in Auckland

Air New Zealand Chief Customer and Sales Officer Leanne Geraghty says the new aircraft is a welcome sign that the airline is doing what it does best – keeping Kiwis connected by adding additional capacity.

“We’re focused on growing our domestic network and this A321neo (ZK-OYA) is especially configured for domestic flying to add almost 50 additional seats per flight compared to our A320s.”

“Our customers have told us, departing on schedule and reaching their destination on time is incredibly important. With the exciting introduction of the larger A321neo domestic aircraft, we’ll commence boarding five minutes earlier and encourage all customers to be at the gate ready to board at minimum, 15 minutes before departure, to ensure an on-time departure.”

The new aircraft is undergoing five days of pre-service readiness in the Auckland Hangars before it commences its first flight on 8 November from Auckland to Wellington.

The new aircraft is the first of two new A321neos to join our domestic fleet this year. The second will arrive later this year, donned with Air New Zealand’s world-first black Star Alliance livery. Three more A321neos are expected to arrive next year with the final two scheduled for 2026.

The A321neos will predominately fly between Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Queenstown and Dunedin.

Air New Zealand has an average fleet age of 7.3 years making it one of the youngest and most efficient fleets in the world.

Photo: Air New Zealand.

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand to resume flights to Chicago O’Hare

Air New Zealand has announced it will resume its nonstop service from Chicago on October 30, bringing the airline back to all 29 of its international pre-Covid destinations.

The services will operate three times a week with a state-of-the-art Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft, allowing customers the opportunity to fly in Business Premier, Premium Economy and Economy Skycouch.

Additionally, this marks the launch of Air New Zealand’s brand new international menu, which will showcase the best of Air New Zealand produce to travelers across the world; including seared salmon from Marlborough and crisp salads from the orchards and fields in Gisborne, Waikato and the Manawatū.

In other news, From October 30, 2022, all new Economy bookings made on Air New Zealand’s Tahiti, Perth and Honolulu services will enjoy the full-inflight service offering, including a tasty meal, Inflight Entertainment, and baggage allowances, as the airline makes moves to further lift its customer proposition.

What’s changing?

Perth and Tahiti

  • From October 20, Seat and Seat+bag fares will no longer be available to be booked on flights departing after October 30.
  • Customers will now be able to choose between The Works (Economy), Premium Economy and Business Premier.
  • During the transition period, customers who have purchased a Seat or Seat+bag prior to 20 October, will receive a full meal and beverage service and Inflight Entertainment if travelling post October 30.
  • Original ticketed baggage allowance, Airpoints Dollars and Status Points accrual will apply to existing tickets.

Honolulu

  • From October 30, Honolulu flights will move to a full-service offering.
  • Customers can choose between Economy, Premium Economy and Business Premier on these flights.
  • During the transition period, customers who have purchased a seat, Seat+bag or The Works will automatically receive our full service Economy offering.
  • Original ticketed baggage allowance, Airpoints Dollars and Status Points accrual will apply to existing tickets.

Top Copyright Photo: Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner ZK-NZN (msn 38182) LAX (Jay Selman). Image: 404201.

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand touches down in New York

Air New Zealand touched down at John F. Kennedy International Airport on September 17, marking the first of its nonstop flights connecting the city of sails and the city that never sleeps.

 

The airline’s new international menu was debuted onboard NZ2, showcasing the best of New Zealand produce to the world. This features more choice in the air, so Premium customers can add the likes of seared salmon from Marlborough, free-range chicken from Waikato or bacon, and streamed green vegetables or fresh, crisp salads picked straight from orchards and fields in Gisborne, Waikato and the Manawatū.

As part of the new menu, Business Premier customers were welcomed to their dining experience with an amuse-bouche of New Zealand paua saucisson (abalone sausage) with herb cream and tomato.

Air New Zealand now serves seven destinations in North AmericaChicago (from 31 October), Honolulu, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Vancouver and (after much anticipation), New York City.

The first flight from New York (JFK) to Auckland (AKL) departed at 21:55 ET with an estimated flight time of 17 and a half hours.

Flight schedule between Auckland and New York, effective September 19, 2022:

Flight No.

Aircraft type

From

To

Departs

Arrives

Frequency

NZ2

Boeing 787-9
Dreamliner

Auckland

New York

19:40

19:55

Mon, Thu, Sat

NZ1

New York

Auckland

21:55

07:30 +2

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand reports a loss before taxation of $810 million

Air New Zealand issued this financial report:

2022 Financial summary

  • Loss before other significant items and taxation of $725 million1, compared to $444 million in the prior year
  • Statutory loss before taxation of $810 million
  • Operating revenue lifts 9 percent to $2.7 billion, driven by Cargo performance
  • Recapitalisation completed in May, raising $2.2 billion
  • Liquidity of $2.3 billion as at 23 August

    In a year of ongoing twists and turns, Air New Zealand has recapitalised its business and, in the last quarter, experienced greater than expected demand for travel, while managing rising costs and an ongoing pandemic.

    The airline has today announced a loss before other significant items and taxation of $725 million for the 2022 financial year, consistent with guidance provided to the market in June. The statutory loss before taxation was $810 million2.

     

    Although the financial year ended strongly following the phased reopening of New Zealand’s borders from March, the airline’s operating revenue of $2.7 billion was significantly impacted by pandemic related travel restrictions.

    Cargo and domestic revenues helped lift overall revenue by 9 percent, however high fuel prices and reduced flying over much of the year resulted in a loss for the period.

    Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran said the airline continued to be guided by a clear strategy, moving deftly to address continued change by focusing on doing the right thing for its stakeholders.

    “For customers, we’ve been focused on restoring services, maintaining a choice of fares and launching innovations to improve their journey with us. For our amazing staff we have provided one-off awards to acknowledge their continued extra mahi, and for our communities we’ve been obsessed with operational performance, which drives the reliable services they depend on,” says Mr Foran.

    “For our shareholders, whose support has refuelled the business for future growth, we’ve completed a successful recapitalisation that was structured to be fair to our shareholders, including those that didn’t take up the rights offer.”

    Mr Foran said cargo revenue continued to be a major contributor to the company’s performance, up 32 percent to $1.0 billion. Additional flying under the New Zealand and Australian government airfreight schemes contributed $403 million of that revenue. With borders now largely reopened, the Australian scheme has ended, and the New Zealand scheme is tapering off and will cease by the end of March 2023.

    Firmly in the ‘revive’ phase of the ‘survive, revive, thrive’ journey, Mr Foran says the current environment is one of strong bookings despite ongoing challenges.

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1 Loss before other significant items and taxation represent Earnings stated in compliance with NZ IFRS (Statutory Earnings) after excluding 2items which due to their size or nature warrant separate disclosure to assist with understanding the underlying financial performance of the Group. Loss before other significant items and taxation is reported within Note 3 of the Group’s 2022 audited annual financial statements

When travel restrictions began to lift in March the company recorded a very strong recovery in bookings and revenues. This trend continues, with high booking levels through July and August. Corporate bookings are also encouraging and are trending closely towards pre-Covid levels.

Mr Foran referred to the airline’s mid-August schedule changes, which reduced seats by 1.5 percent through to the end of March 2023, as another example of doing the right thing for stakeholders.

“As we’ve been seeing overseas, travel demand is much stronger than anyone anticipated. But we’re operating in a very tight labour market with high fuel prices, tough economic conditions and the highest levels of employee sickness in more than a decade.

“Our rehiring efforts and training capability have been excellent, as has work to get our Boeing 777-300ER aircraft back flying again, but the experience for some of our customers and the impact on our front-line staff this winter has been unacceptable, so we’ve adapted yet again.

“Having adjusted our schedule to provide customers with increased surety over their travel plans for the coming spring and summer, I am hugely appreciative of the work the Air New Zealand whānau has done to deliver more than 25,000 flights across June and July alone.”

The airline also made investment decisions in support of its Kia Mau strategy. These include the plan to move the Auckland workforce to its airport campus, investment in a new hangar at Auckland airport and the decision to close its Gas Turbines business unit by the middle of the 2023 calendar year.

Air New Zealand Chair Dame Therese Walsh thanked Greg and the Air New Zealand team for a year in which the airline not only managed significant challenges but also introduced changes that will deliver improved services to customers and made progress on their long-term sustainability goals.

“The airline’s continued ability to step carefully through an ongoing pandemic while looking beyond the horizon is becoming a core capability. While introducing and then removing vaccination requirements for domestic travel, there have been preparations for our New York launch and the completion of designs for our new Boeing 787 Dreamliner cabin experience.

“For our AirpointsTM members there were more than 2,000 new products added to our AirpointsTM store as well as the introduction of Flexipay, so customers can enjoy even more online shopping options. I’m especially excited about our next generation app, which will give customers a more seamless travel experience when it rolls out in the coming months.

“In April we announced ‘Flight NZ0’, a programme to engage customers as we work towards net zero carbon emissions by 2050. We were the second airline globally to announce an interim science-based target to 2030 and continue to make progress on sustainable aviation fuel and zero emissions aircraft technology.

“Throughout the year we have also made improvements to the pay and conditions for our people, settling 12 collective employment agreements, increasing the base pay of our front-line workers and restarting incentive payments to staff on individual employment agreements ensure we retain our dedicated team.”

Dame Therese acknowledged the support the airline has received from its shareholders over the course of a challenging two-year period.

“From the Crown loan provided in the early days of the pandemic, to the airfreight support scheme that helped us keep connected to key export markets, to the $2.2 billion recapitalisation completed in May which allowed thousands of shareholders to take part in refuelling the airline for success. We have had significant support from all our shareholders and for that we are truly grateful.”

Strong liquidity position with dividend suspended

As at 23 August 2022, the airline has available liquidity of $2.3 billion, consisting of approximately $1.9 billion in cash and $400 million of available funds on the unsecured standby loan facility with the Crown. The cash balance includes $200 million of issued redeemable shares which the airline intends to redeem once our recovery is further progressed.

The Board does not expect to consider payment of dividends before the airline’s earnings substantially recover, and in the context of a supportive and sustained broader economic environment and recovery.

Outlook for 2023

With borders now open to the majority of the airline’s markets, Air New Zealand expects the 2023 financial year to represent the first full year of uninterrupted passenger flying since the beginning of the pandemic.

Total flying capacity for the 2023 financial year is expected to be in the range of 75 percent to 80 percent of pre-Covid levels. On this basis, the airline anticipates a significant improvement in financial performance relative to financial year 2022.

Given the degree of uncertainty regarding volatility in jet fuel prices, the risk of a global recession, and other macroeconomic factors including inflationary pressures on costs, no earnings guidance will be provided at this time.

Video:

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand is taking proactive measures to protect the travel plans of its customers as sickness levels continue to cause disruption

Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner ZK-NZG (msn 37963) HNL (Ivan K. Nishimura). Image: 956949.

Air New Zealand has issued this statement:

Over the next six months, the airline will operate a slightly reduced schedule of 1.5 percent fewer seats than originally planned, meaning a change to some flights.

Most customers who experience a flight change will be transferred to another flight on the same day for domestic travel, and for international travel, on the same day or a day either side of their original booking. Where customers cannot be accommodated within these timeframes, they may change their booking online, opt into credit or request a refund.

Those customers with changes will start to see them from today and will be automatically transferred to another flight. Those with further onward connections may also be disrupted and we will work through these directly with impacted customers.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran says making these changes now gives customers advance notice and will help the airline provide a service that’s more reliable during its rebuild.

“Like many airlines around the world, we’ve been ramping up our operation at a time when Covid and the flu continues to impact the aviation industry. Looking at the disruptions our customers and staff have faced over the past five weeks, we’ve made some adjustments to reduce short-notice cancellations in the months ahead.

“While we did factor sickness into our ramp up plan, we’ve seen the highest rates of crew sickness in over a decade. We see these challenges continuing not just for crew, but for our whole operation, and so we’re making proactive changes to address them.”

Mr Foran says reducing the number of flights means the airline will be able to have crew on standby to cover illness, which has not been possible lately.

“We’re pulling out all the stops to minimise disruption and provide surety for our customers over the next six months. We have rehired or brought on more than 2,000 pilots, airport staff, cabin crew, contact centre and engineers, and we’re going as fast as we can with recruitment and training.

“We’re also exploring options to lease a crewed widebody aircraft for the busy summer period. We know customers want the Air New Zealand experience, and that’s what we want to deliver too. But at the moment we’re stretched to capacity and making sure our customers are able to travel is our top priority. The lease of an additional crewed aircraft may help us achieve that.”

Air New Zealand’s domestic and international schedule will be operating at 90% of pre-Covid capacity for the next six months.

In other news, ANZ is bring back grounded Boeing 777-300 aircraft:

Top Copyright Photo: Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner ZK-NZG (msn 37963) HNL (Ivan K. Nishimura). Image: 956949.

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand to relaunch 14 international routes

Air New Zealand is gearing up for the busiest July in two years with the relaunch of 14 international routes in 16 days. With these routes back in action, the airline will be operating 60 percent of its international capacity – the most international flying in the last two years.

From July 9, 2022, the airline will have three quarters of its international and domestic routes back up and running with popular destinations like Honolulu, Houston and Tahiti restarting after around 820 days of not operating.

The Boeing 777-300 aircraft will also be back flying passengers, helping towards the addition of around 40,000 seats per week in July on the international network.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran says it takes a village to get the airline back up and running and is incredibly proud of the sheer amount of work the team at Air New Zealand has put in to get to this moment.

“To bring one Boeing 777-300 out of storage in Auckland takes around six to eight weeks to get it ready for the skies. We’ve hired or rehired more than 2,000 Air New Zealanders across the business including 150 pilots, more than 500 cabin crew, and 270 airport employees, with another 1100 vacancies to be filled. It’s no easy feat but we’re getting back to where we were so we can give our customers that Air New Zealand service they know and love.

“We’re seeing first hand how keen people are to travel again, particularly across the Tasman. Come July, we will double our services across the Tasman and restart popular direct services like the Sunshine Coast, Hobart and Adelaide. By 9 July we will be back to all nine Australian ports which is an important milestone for us.

“I’d like to thank our customers for their patience while we get back to where we were pre-Covid, as well as our teams who are working hard to gear back up.

“Getting aircraft out of storage, people back in, opening ports, and working with new travel requirements, there’s a lot to consider, and the Air New Zealand team are doing their very best to make it happen as quickly as possible.”

Air New Zealand’s restart schedule is as follows:

Auckland

Commencing from

Frequency Jul-Oct

Honolulu

4 July

3 per week

Tahiti

6 July

2 per week

New Caledonia

6 July

2 per week

Houston

7 July

3 per week

Adelaide

6 July

3-4 per week

Cairns

5 July

3 per week

Hobart

7 July

2 per week

Sunshine Coast

9 July

2 per week

Gold Coast

3 July

4-2 per week

Nadi

5 July

3-2 per week

Nadi

5 Jul

3-2 per week

Brisbane

24 June

4-3 per week

Melbourne

24 June

7-6 per week

Sydney

25 June

9-5 per week

Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

Air New Zealand offers the best sleep in the sky as it unveils new 787 cabins

Air New Zealand has made this announcement:

The airline has responded to overwhelming customer feedback on the importance of sleep and need for more comfort and space. The interior design is inspired by the uniqueness of Aotearoa so customers will experience New Zealand as soon as they step onboard.

Air New Zealand’s new Dreamliners, due to arrive in 2024, will give customers more choice than any airline in the world, providing the best sleep in the sky regardless of the cabin customers choose to fly in.

This includes a new Business Premier Luxe seat, designed for customers looking for more space and privacy, and Skynest, the world’s first sleep pods in the sky for Economy travellers.

Feedback from extensive customer research over five years has highlighted the importance for a good night’s sleep and the need for more space and comfort, so the new experience is designed around creating a home away from home that leaves customers refreshed and raring to go at their destination.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran points to the airline’s ambition to create the greatest flying experience and says the new cabin, combined with world-leading Kiwi hospitality, is the winning formula.

“New Zealand’s location puts us in a unique position to lead on the ultra-longhaul travel experience. We have zeroed in on sleep, comfort, and wellness because we know how important it is for our customers to arrive well-rested. Whether they are heading straight into a meeting, or to their first holiday hotspot – they want to hit the ground running.

“It’s a proud moment to finally unveil five years of hard mahi, in what truly is a cabin of possibility. One that will provide customers with options to get some shut eye wherever they’re sitting.”

Innovation has driven the new cabin experience from nose to tail. For Economy customers, the Skynest concept, first announced in 2020, will be a world-first.

“We wanted to offer our Economy customers a lie-flat option and that’s how Skynest was born. It’s going to be a real game changer for the economy travel experience.”

Chief Customer and Sales Officer Leanne Geraghty says the cabin’s interior design is inspired by the uniqueness of Aotearoa, from the forest inspired carpet to the seats that draw inspiration from New Zealand’s native bird, the Tui.

“Whether we are welcoming visitors or flying New Zealanders home, we want our customers to experience Aotearoa from the moment they step onboard – and get the best night’s rest.

“Research shows us the first night away from home is the hardest to get a good night’s sleep so everything we do onboard is to help create a sense of calm – from the lighting and sleep ritual including sleepy teas and balms, to the healthier food choices and breathable fabrics. Meditative onscreen content, Zentertainment, will also help customers unwind and get ready for rest.

The airline has also added a Sky Pantry to the Premium Economy and Economy cabins, so customers can stretch their legs, grab a bite to eat and hydrate at their leisure throughout their journey.

Sustainability has been at the heart of the design process. Using modern fabrics, rather than leather, has saved around one kilogram in weight per Business Premier and Premium Economy seat, reducing overall carbon emissions. In Premium cabins, the airline will also switch to serviceware that is 20% lighter, helping to reduce carbon emissions, and in Economy, the new serviceware will reduce plastic dishes used inflight by 28 million every year.

The Cabin of Possibility

Business Premier Luxe

The best sleep in the sky. Our new offering is for customers looking for the ultimate space and privacy. A luxury experience with all the features of Business Premier, but with a fully closing door and space for two to dine.

Business Premier

A comfortable and private nest for a blissful journey and tranquil sleep. And if traveling with a companion, the middle row allows customers to open their nest and share their experience.

Premium Economy

For the treat-seekers looking for a little luxury to unwind and enjoy a taste of Aotearoa. Our new seat offers more privacy and protected space where you can recline at leisure without interrupting the person behind.

Economy Skynest

It’s time to swap the headrest for some bedrest. Say hello to the world’s first sleep pods in the sky, Skynest. Stretch out in one of six pods for part of your journey and catch some shut eye. A game changer for economy travellers.

Economy Skycouch

Use the Skycouch the way you want. Sit, spread out, or lie down and snooze. Share the space or keep it all to yourself.

Economy Stretch

It’s all in the name. This seat is for those who want to rest and stretch their legs further than the regular Economy seat.

Economy seat

An enhanced economy seat designed with more storage, comfort and space and a 50% bigger screen for entertainment. Connect to Bluetooth audio and pair your device to act as a remote control or second screen.

Additional highlights include::

  • WELLNESS: The importance of restful sleep during travel is at the heart of Air New Zealand’s refreshed cabin experience. From the lighting to the choice of carpeting to the engineering minutia of the seats themselves – Air New Zealand has innovated from tip to tail.

  • DESIGN: This has been a five year design process (170,000 hours total). The interiors are inspired by Aotearoa’s iconic native bird, the Tui.

  • FOOD: Travelers will be wined and dined with the best of New Zealand produce, with lighter choices for Premium customers, and better-quality meals for those in Economy

  • OPTIONS: It will offer the most choice of any airline in its three cabins to get the best sleep in the sky

  • SUSTAINABILITY: With sustainability being a core focus, Air New Zealand used fabric rather than leather that reduced carbon emissions, and has sustainably sourced all of their blankets, pillows and other soft products used onboard. The new serviceware in Premium cabins has the potential to remove 28 million single use plastic dishes every year.

Notes

The eight Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners arriving from 2024 and retrofitted current 787-9 fleet will have either eight or four Business Premier Luxe seats, 42 or 22 Business Premier, 52 or 33 Premium Economy, 125 or 213 Economy seats, and specifically on the ultra-longhaul aircraft, six Skynest sleep pods.

Video:
Air New Zealand aircraft photo gallery:

 

Air New Zealand to fly nonstop to New York

Air New Zealand has announced its first, nonstop flight from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to New Zealand’s Auckland International Airport.

Starting September 17, Air New Zealand will offer direct flights from New York to Auckland, celebrating the airline’s continued commitment to growth, with JFK being its seventh North American airport. This incredible aviation milestone will be the fourth longest flight in the world at 17 hours and 35 minutes.

Pertaining to COVID-19, in order to enter New Zealand:

  • All travelers entering New Zealand must be fully vaccinated in line with New Zealand government entry requirements.
  • A negative pre-departure test (PCR, LAMP or Rapid Antigen) in line with New Zealand government requirements is required for all travelers.
  • No compulsory requirement for all arriving travelers to either self-isolate or enter a government managed isolation hotel, i.e. all forms of isolation for arriving travelers (including foreign nationals) are removed at all border reopening steps except for unvaccinated New Zealand citizens and residents returning to the country.
  • All travelers will be provided with two rapid antigen tests at no charge on arrival at Auckland Airport which are self-administered after exit from the airport.
  • Travelers will be asked to undertake the first test on day of arrival and then a second test on day 5/6 after arrival, this can be done once travelers have left the airport e.g. at home or hotel.
  • Travelers who test positive via either of their arrival day or day 5/6 RAT test will be required to take PCR test to confirm positive status, if positive they will then be asked to self-isolate in line with the requirements that apply to all community COVID-19 cases in New Zealand.

Getting to New Zealand just got easier. Today, Air New Zealand has announced its first flight from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport to New Zealand will be on 17 September this year.

Landing at Auckland International Airport, the airline will operate the new route three times a week, year-round with its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft. The new service further deepens the alliance between Air New Zealand and United Airlines.

Departing New York at 9:55pm, customers will enjoy Air New Zealand’s award-winning cabin experience, and when they wake up they’ll be able to hit the ground running, heading off the beaten track and immersing themselves in everything New Zealand has to offer.

“Traditionally, flight numbers 1 and 2 are used for an airline’s flagship route. And that’s what New York will be – our flagship route. We’ve worked incredibly hard over the past few years to make this ultra-long-haul service a reality – it’s one of the longest routes in the world, at just over 16 hours northbound and 17 and a half hours southbound.”

There’s been a lot of thought put into the onboard experience and a particular focus on the sleep ritual for Premium customers, introducing relaxing balms and sleepy teas and snacks. For those needing help to unwind a little more, the airline will launch ‘Zentertainment’ on its inflight entertainment system to encourage a restful sleep. And before descent into Auckland, a brunch service including a classic Kiwi flat white coffee will be offered.

Through Air New Zealand’s strong partnership with United Airlines, domestic customers across the US can easily connect to New Zealand through New York as well as Air New Zealand’s other gateways.

The configuration of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner that will service this route offers more Premium seats than other Dreamliners in the airline’s fleet. The flight will offer 27 seats in Business, 33 in Premium Economy, 215 in Economy and 13 Economy Skycouches – innovative private Economy seats that convert into a couch after take-off so customers can spread out, lie down or snooze.

Inaugural outbound flight schedule – September 17 only:

Flight No. Operated by Aircraft type Departs Arrives Frequency
NZ2 Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner Auckland

16:00

New York

16:15

Sat

Flight schedule effective 19 September:

Flight No. Operated by Aircraft type Departs Arrives Frequency
NZ1 Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner New York

21:55

Auckland

07:30 +2

Mon, Thu, Sat
NZ2 Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner Auckland

19:40

New York

19:55

Flights will arrive into and depart from Terminal 1 at John F. Kennedy International Airport. Flights are subject to government and regulatory requirements.