Air New Zealand will fly to Shanghai for first time since February

written by Adam Thorn | June 16, 2020
A pair of Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 at Auckland Airport. (Rob Finlayson)
A pair of Air New Zealand Boeing 787-9 at Auckland Airport. (Rob Finlayson)

Air New Zealand will operate one return service per week between Auckland and Shanghai for the first time since February.

Before the pandemic, the airline flew seven times per week to the Chinese city, but it was the very first to be axed as the pandemic spread.

However, both countries are still enforcing strict border controls that mean only residents can enter before undergoing 14-day quarantine.

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The new route comes despite the airline still operating a significantly reduced international network, with only limited flights to Australia, Hong Kong, LA, Niue, Narita and Norfolk.

The 787-9 Dreamliner will depart Auckland on Mondays at 11pm from 22 June and arrives at Shanghai at 7:15am. The return departs Shanghai at 2:15pm on Wednesdays from 24 June, arriving in Auckland at 5:45am.

Air New Zealand general manager of networks, Scott Carr, said, “Shanghai was the first route to be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and government travel restrictions, so it’s pleasing to be able to resume operating passenger services on this route from Monday.”

The news comes a week after Air New Zealand announced it would again operate one weekly return flight to Tokyo, Narita from 25 June, after previously cancelling the service on 30 March.

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Prior to the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the flag carrier operated 10 services per week on the popular route.

Domestically, the airline has announced it will significantly increase its domestic capacity from 20 to 55 per cent in July and August, including restarting its direct A320 service between Auckland and Invercargill.

Already, the business is now operating to all 20 domestic ports it previously serviced.

AUCKLAND-SHANGHAI ROUTE

The 787-9 Dreamliner will depart Auckland on Mondays at 11pm from 22 June and arrives at Shanghai at 7:15am.

The return departs Shanghai at 2:15pm on Wednesdays from 24 June, arriving in Auckland at 5:45am.

AUCKLAND-NARITA ROUTE

Departs Auckland at 11:15pm, arrives Narita at 7:20am.

Departs Narita at 3:30pm, arrives Auckland at 5:05am.

There will be a one-off departure from Auckland on 25 June, and Narita on 27 June. Then on every Tuesday from Auckland from 30 June; and from Narita every Friday from 3 July.

JULY/AUGUST ANZ NETWORK

(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

ANZ BUSINESS-TIMED FLIGHT NETWORK

Hamilton-Wellington

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

Tauranga-Auckland

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

Napier-Auckland

  • 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

Nelson-Auckland

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

Nelson-Wellington

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

Nelson-Christchurch

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

Dunedin-Christchurch

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

Invercargill-Christchurch

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

3 Comments

  • Dave

    says:

    Just to clarify, Air NZ (as well as other carriers including LATAM) was flying numerous Auckland-Shanghai return cargo flights every single day during the ‘covid-19 lockdown’ period. Those delicious crayfish weren’t going to get to the Chinese markets by swimming.

  • Dermott Renner

    says:

    Air NZ was most nights flying 2 787’s to Shanghai without passengers during lockdown

  • Terence O’Neill-joyce

    says:

    You did not mention that Air New Zealand has failed to resume service to Fiji, an island Nation in dire economic trouble, as the hotels and staff gone stand almost empty.
    However Air New Zealand quoted as being pleased that service, however limited with the PRC ., is to resume is hard to swallow,on humanitarian grounds.

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