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Jetstar stations another A320 in NZ as part of major expansion

written by Jake Nelson | June 24, 2024

Three Jetstar A320-200s at Christchurch. (Image: Christchurch Airport)

Jetstar is embarking on a significant New Zealand expansion as it marks 15 years in the country.

The airline will base an extra A320 in Christchurch from December, bringing its total NZ fleet to eight, and launch new routes from Auckland to Sunshine Coast and Christchurch to Cairns, as well as increasing capacity on domestic routes including Christchurch–Auckland and Auckland–Wellington.

Auckland–Sunshine Coast will see three weekly Jetstar flights starting 13 December, while the carrier will begin three weekly flights from Christchurch to Cairns starting in April 2025.

Jetstar will also adjust its flight times between Christchurch and Melbourne to improve connectivity with its long-haul international network.

This is the largest increase to Jetstar’s New Zealand operations in more than 10 years, said the airline’s CEO, Stephanie Tully, and comes as the carrier is tipped to return to full pre-pandemic capacity in New Zealand this year.


“Over the past 15 years, we’ve helped make travel more accessible for millions of New Zealanders and this expansion will help to unlock hundreds of thousands of low fares and more choice for our customers and provide a significant boost to tourism on both sides of the Tasman,” she said.

“Having another aircraft based in Christchurch, as well as the launch of new flights and capacity, will help establish the city as a major gateway for Jetstar in New Zealand, providing more choice and great low fares for South Island residents.

“We thank Christchurch Airport and the Queensland Government for their ongoing support of low fares travel.”

Justin Watson, CEO of Christchurch Airport, said the move is a “huge vote of confidence” in the city, and will “bolster services and offer more travel options in and out of Christchurch Airport”.

“This is a smart decision by Jetstar. The city has some major new assets, including the Te Pae, our awesome new convention centre with Te Kaha stadium and Parakiore Recreation and Sport Centre coming onstream which will drive further visitor growth. Jetstar is positioning itself well to capitalise on that expansion,” he said.

“More seats across the Tasman offers better choice and a direct connection with Cairns opens up a seamless two-way link to the fantastic opportunities in the South Island and in Tropical North Queensland.”

Queensland Tourism Minister and state MP for Cairns, Michael Healy, has welcomed the new services into Cairns and the Sunshine Coast.

“The flights will go some way to alleviating the pain of losing Bonza Airlines from the local market,” he said.

“These will be the 33rd and 34th routes secured through the $200 million Attracting Aviation Investment Fund.

“The Fund is estimated to deliver more than 2.26 million inbound international seats and up to $1.95 billion in overnight visitor spend per year, supporting 22,700 Queensland jobs.”

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