Two of New Zealand’s growing regional airlines have announced an ‘agency alliance’ that will extend affordable air services to their existing customers.
Barrier Air, currently flying routes between Auckland, Kaitaia, North Shore and Great Barrier Island, is extending it’s services from 8th February south to Hamilton on a daily basis.
Kiwi Regional Airlines passengers, flying routes between Nelson, Dunedin and Hamilton will be able to connect in Hamilton with Barrier Air flights to Auckland, and on to Great Barrier Island, North Shore or Kaitaia around midday on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, starting 15th February.
Passengers booking on Kiwi flights to Hamilton will be able to ‘add on’ a connecting Barrier Air flight to one of these destinations at a concessionary rate; and Barrier Air passengers will be able to land in Hamilton, and transfer to a connecting Kiwi flight to Nelson and Dunedin.
In a joint statement from the airlines, Kiwi CEO Ewan Wilson and Barrier CEO Mike Foster said they were “very pleased to be able to help ordinary kiwis living in regional areas to fly from north to south, and vice versa, on fully regional services.”
Mr Foster said the NZ Civil Aviation Authority was in the process of certifying his airline’s new route between Auckland and Hamilton, following a proving flight on 28th January.
“We want Hamilton passengers to be able to continue flying to Auckland when Air New Zealand stops that service on 7th February, and we want to give all regional passengers more choice and better access to our services in the north.”
Mr Wilson said he was “happy that we can offer new destinations through Barrier Air that were very difficult to access in the past.”
“Imagine a Dunedin couple deciding to try something new by flying through Hamilton to Great Barrier Island for a week away from it all, at a very affordable price.
“Or for the grandkids in North Shore to be able to fly from the local airfield all the way to visit the grandparents in Nelson, without having to brave the horrendous Auckland city traffic and airport parking fees!”
Each airline’s reservations staff will be able to act as ‘agents’ for the other airline’s flights, with tickets for the new connections due to go on sale next week. Both CEO’s explained that this agreement is not a codeshare service but an agreement to sell each other seats with each separate tickets but coordinated schedule.