Air New Zealand cancels and reschedules Australia-Christchurch flights

By John Walton, March 18 2011
Air New Zealand cancels and reschedules Australia-Christchurch flights

Following last month's devastating earthquake in Christchurch, Air New Zealand has reduced the number of flights between Christchurch and four cities in Australia.

The airline has also rescheduled many flights, bringing them earlier in the day to improve connection options through Christchurch Airport.

27 Air New Zealand trans-Tasman flights from Christchurch to Sydney, Melbourne and Coolangatta have been removed from the schedule in the autumn period from April to July 2011.

Schedule changes will also hit trans-Tasman flights from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, with most of the changes moving flights to earlier in the day. 

Christchurch Airport CEO Jim Boult explains why: "Air New Zealand is also rescheduling many of the remaining trans-Tasman flights to Christchurch which previously arrived in the late evening to now arrive in daylight hours. We welcome this move as it will be helpful for passengers wanting to transit to other centres and find accommodation outside Christchurch."

Many of Christchurch's hotel rooms -- including most business, conference and convention hotels -- were taken out when the February earthquake damaged their structural integrity. Hotels in the city's CBD were particularly affected.

Business travellers in transit through Christchurch to key South Island business destinations should take note of the new timings.

Earlier flights are likely to be more convenient for same-day transfers to agribusiness towns and cities across the south and the West Coast's mining and resources areas.

John Walton

Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.

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