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Air New Zealand may cut more jobs despite huge capacity increase

written by Adam Thorn | June 5, 2020

Air New Zealand chief executive Greg Foran has warned more staff could be made redundant on top of the 4,000 already lost as he seeks to reduce the business’ wage bill by $150 million.

The news comes despite the airline announcing it’s to significantly increase its domestic capacity from 20 to 55 per cent in July and August.

In a memo to staff obtained by the NZ Herald, Foran said, “Make no mistake, this is going to be a hard journey as we create our own playbook for the airline to emerge even better than before.”

He has outlined a three-step program, which aims to return the airline to “healthy profits” in the next 800 days, despite the airline only being 70 per cent of its pre-coronavirus size.

Union E tū said in response the airline was “blinded to the importance of treating both employees and customers with respect”.


“Thousands of workers have only got several weeks of work left before being made redundant,” said Savage, its head of aviation.

“We will meet with union members as soon as possible to find out in detail how they want to respond. They have lost trust in senior management because of the way they were treated in the first round.

“The company is facing a big challenge, but now is not the time to repeat their past mistakes. To rebuild better, we need to keep these vital workers in jobs.”

Despite the planned cuts, the airline is to significantly increase its operations next month, including restarting its direct A320 service between Auckland and Invercargill.

Services between Christchurch-Rotorua, Invercargill-Wellington and Christchurch-New Plymouth will also resume.

The full network is published below.

Earlier this week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern hinted the country could essentially drop social distancing and return to “very, very normal” life in the coming days as it shifts to “Alert Level 1”.

Yesterday, the country celebrated its 13th straight day of finding no new cases and PM Ardern predicts the country will have eradicated the disease by 15 June. Currently, only one person in New Zealand has COVID-19 and is expected to make a full recovery.

General manager networks Scott Carr said, “We’ve been encouraged by demand from leisure travellers recently and we’re also expecting demand for business travel to continue to build.

“As a result, we have been working to add more flying to our domestic schedule from next month and this includes additional services for the July school holidays.”


(Number of weekly returns in brackets)

Auckland to/from:

  • Blenheim (16) Q300
  • Christchurch (59) A320
  • Dunedin (13) A320
  • Gisborne (23) Q300
  • Invercargill (4) A320
  • Kerikeri (16) Q300
  • Napier (36) ATR/Q300
  • Nelson (32) ATR/Q300
  • New Plymouth (25) ATR/Q300
  • Palmerston North (37) ATR
  • Rotorua (10) Q300
  • Tauranga (28) ATR/Q300
  • Taupo (9) Q300
  • Wellington (64) A320
  • Whangarei (17) Q300
  • Queenstown (47) A320

Wellington to/from:

  • Blenheim (17) Q300
  • Dunedin (19) A320/ATR
  • Gisborne (11) Q300
  • Hamilton (27) ATR/Q300
  • Invercargill (7) Q300
  • Napier (16) ATR
  • Nelson (33) ATR/Q300
  • New Plymouth (16) ATR/Q300
  • Rotorua (16) ATR/Q300
  • Tauranga (22) ATR/Q300
  • Timaru (9) Q300
  • Queenstown (19) A320/ATR

Christchurch to/from:

  • Dunedin (25) ATR
  • Hokitika (9) Q300
  • Hamilton (15) ATR
  • Invercargill (20) ATR
  • Napier (15) ATR/Q300
  • Nelson (25) Q300
  • New Plymouth (7) Q300
  • Palmerston North (19) ATR
  • Rotorua (7) Q300
  • Tauranga (10) Q300
  • Wellington (66) A320/ATR/Q300
  • Queenstown (18) A320/ATR



  • Departs Hamilton 7:30am
  • Departs Wellington 6:05pm


  • Departs Tauranga 7:00am
  • Departs Auckland 6:15pm


  • Departs Napier 7:20am
  • Departs Auckland 3:30pm/6:30pm

New Plymouth-Auckland

  • Departs New Plymouth 8:05am
  • Departs Auckland 4:25pm

New Plymouth-Wellington

  • Departs New Plymouth 7:30am
  • Departs Wellington 5:00pm

Palmerston North-Auckland

  • Departs Palmerston North 7:15am
  • Departs Auckland 4:30pm


  • Departs Nelson 6:30am/8:05am
  • Departs Auckland 3:00pm/5:20pm


  • Departs Nelson 7:05am
  • Departs Wellington 4:30pm/5:50pm


  • Departs Nelson 7:25am
  • Departs Christchurch 6:15pm


  • Departs Dunedin 7:00am
  • Departs Christchurch 5:55pm


  • Departs Invercargill 8:45am
  • Departs Christchurch 4:45pm


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