Air New Zealand Trims Q1 2022 Schedules To 6 International Ports

After the New Zealand government pushed back the staged reopening of the country’s borders, Air New Zealand has adjusted the number of flights it planned to operate in and out of New Zealand from several international destinations across the first quarter of 2022.

Air New Zealand has amended its timetables in early 2022 to six international destinations. Photo: Boeing

Planned flying to six key international destinations trimmed

Late last week, Air New Zealand issued a travel advisory that reduced the number of flights it would operate to six international ports across various dates between mid-January and March 31. All the impacted flights depart from and arrive into New Zealand from Auckland.

Last Tuesday, New Zealand’s government delayed the first stage in New Zealand’s border reopening from mid-January until the end of February. It was to be a small reopening – New Zealand would allow its own citizens and permanent residents departing from Australia to skip the quarantine process on arrival.

However, that small start promised to breathe some life into Air New Zealand’s flights from its many Australian ports. The deferral of the reopening saw Air New Zealand abandon plans to ramp up its trans-Tasman flying from mid-January.

Instead, later in the week, the airline confirmed it would only operate daily return flights to Melbourne and Sydney between January 17 and February 27. In addition, three return flights a week to Brisbane, two return flights a week to Perth would also operate over the same period.

Air New Zealand has trimmed planned flights to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Nadi, and Taipei. Photo: Getty Images

Air New Zealand flights to four Australian ports maintained

Out of Auckland, NZ103 is pushing back at 09:45 every morning between those dates and heading over to Sydney, landing there at 11:10. After around an hour and a half on the ground, NZ854 departs Sydney at 12:45 and arrives back in Auckland at 17:45.

Melbourne-bound flights will leave Auckland at 10:55 and touch down in Melbourne at 12:50. The return flight, NZ872, will close its doors at 14:20 and get back into Auckland at 19:45. Both the Sydney and Melbourne flights are operated by Air New Zealand’s Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners.

Air New Zealand flights to Brisbane will fly every Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday during the January 17 – February 27 period. NZ141 leaves Auckland at 13:45 on those days and lands in Brisbane at 14:15. The return flight, NZ848, pushes back at 15:40 and lands in Auckland at 21:45 that evening. Air New New Zealand’s Dreamliners will also operate the Brisbane services.

While Air New Zealand advises it will operate two return services a week between Auckland and Perth, its booking engine does not yet reflect this. Instead, the airline is currently offering flights in conjunction with Qantas that include a connection on Australia’s east coast. Air New Zealand’s website may update later to include the direct flights announced last week.

Of course, just because flights are technically available for sale doesn’t mean you can buy a ticket and jump onboard. Air New Zealand won’t let you board their Auckland-bound international flights unless you have a confirmed quarantine bed.

In the other direction, while fully vaccinated Kiwis and Australians landing in Sydney and Melbourne can skip quarantine, international arrivals into Brisbane and Perth cannot.

There remain formidable barriers to flying to New Zealand. Photo: Getty Images

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Air New Zealand flights to Nadi & Taipei also reduced

Elsewhere across Air New Zealand’s international network, flights between Auckland and Nadi will operate once a week across February. On Thursdays, NZ952 will leave Auckland at 12:35 and touch down in Nadi at 14:25. The return flight, NZ953,  will leave Nadi at 15:45 and arrive back in Auckland at 19:45. Air New Zealand is also sending its Dreamliner to Nadi across February. Air New Zealand says all other flights to the Islands remain unchanged at this stage.

Finally, Air New Zealand says it will be operating just one flight a month between Auckland and Taipei between February 14 and March 31. Currently, the airline’s online booking engine doesn’t reflect this change. with available flights cropping up around once a fortnight over this period. All other international routes remain unchanged at this stage.