Air New Zealand restarts Hobart but pushes back Chicago

The Kiwi carrier says it won’t resume flights to Chicago until the back half of 2025.

By David Flynn, April 19 2024
Air New Zealand restarts Hobart but pushes back Chicago

Air New Zealand will return to Hobart in October, adding the Tassie capital to its trans-Tasman network, albeit only on a seasonal basis.

There’ll be three AirNZ flights per week between Hobart and Auckland between October 2024 and March 2025, the airline reveals in an update to its summer schedule.

But the long hop from Auckland to Chicago will remain on hold due to a shortage of aircraft “due to ongoing engine challenges.”

The Star Alliance member now says it doesn’t expect those non-stop flights to be back on the schedule until “the second half of 2025” when the airline will take delivery of new Boeing 787 jets.

Citing “ongoing challenges with the availability of Rolls Royce Trent 1000 engines on our 787-9 aircraft,” the airline is now contacting “customers who have bookings on our Chicago route from October to share their options, so they do not need to contact us proactively.”

"Those who booked via a travel agent should contact their agent to confirm changes to their itinerary.”

The delivery of those factory-fresh Boeing 787s, which will arrive with new business class suites, is now running a year behind schedule.

To fill the gap, Air New Zealand will begin upgrading its current Dreamliners with the next-gen Business Premier seats – including four spacious Luxe suites – and premium economy recliners.

“We’re expecting the first of our retrofit aircraft in October this year,” an Air New Zealand spokesperson told Executive Traveller earlier this year, “however where this aircraft will first fly to hasn’t been decided yet.”

“Our retrofit aircraft could be on any long-haul and short-haul route (anywhere we fly the 787 currently).”

“The new aircraft will be more efficient for our ultra-long-haul routes like Chicago and New York. However, until they arrive, there is a possibility our retrofit aircraft may also service these routes.”




19 Sep 2013

Total posts 203

If that means less 787s available while they are being upgraded, I can see Air New Zealand having to use Wamos aircraft for some time. That may cause problems for those booked in Premium Economy.

29 Jan 2012

Total posts 177

Really, they didn't know this would happen. Seems to be a current trend with airlines to promise schedules and then make excuses as to why they can't fly them. ANZ like other airlines, sold or decommissioned aircraft to save $ during the pandemic and now don't have the capacity to fly the network they sell. ANZ could have kept the 772's flying with a reduced payload, they can do the distance and it may not bring the returns ANZ was hoping for, but at least the sector is flying and clients aren't being inconvenienced - the aircraft can then be replaced when the new fleet arrives, if it ever does. Companies are now totally focused on their bottom line and clients, well they can be replaced easily by new generation passengers.

Very disappointing ANZ.

18 Mar 2014

Total posts 98

If you cared to do any research you'd realise they have two 787's currently parked up in Auckland without engines due to the issue with the RR Trent 1000's, so a massive dent to available capacity and nothing to do with the 772 decision 3 years ago. Also, Boeing has delayed delivery for nearly every airline, so they're all scrambling to make adjustments to schedules, just look at United, Ryanair, etc.

09 Mar 2016

Total posts 2

Simple. There is competition on the US routes and Air NZ cannot deal with competition. No other direct flights to Hobart: Monopoly. No competition on most domestic flights: Monopoly. Fares gouged. And as regional Kiwis we are being absolutely screwed. A last minute return flight from Nelson to Auckland is about $1000 for two. Trans Tasman to Sydney from a hub is about half.

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