Air New Zealand is investing in 13 Airbus neo aircraft (seven A321neos and six A320neos) to replace the A320 fleet that currently operates on the Tasman and Pacific Island services.
The fleet also boasts a new-look cabin interior with new leather seats that are 3cm wider at the middle seat and 1cm wider on the aisle and window. Their slim-line and curved design means passengers sink further into the seat back creating up to 7 per cent more usable space when compared with the equivalent pitch on the existing fleet.
Other customer enhancements include around 25 percent more overhead locker space, a new Android based inflight entertainment system with a larger 10” screen and high-power USB charging points and Wi-Fi connectivity.
Air New Zealand Cook Islands manager Marisa Newman expects the new aircraft to be well received by customers travelling to and from Rarotonga.
“The neo has been flying since late November and we’ve had some fantastic feedback from customers about the new-look cabin. As we’ve taken delivery of further aircraft we’ve been able to introduce the neo to more routes, including Auckland – Rarotonga, and we look forward to welcoming more customers on board,” says Ms Newman.
Air New Zealand operates daily services between Rarotonga and Auckland and up to three daily services at peak periods. The A321neo will operate alongside Airbus A320, Boeing 777 and 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft on the route.
Meanwhile, Air New Zealand has taken out a top international award for the enhancements it’s made to its Economy Skycouch to cater for the airline’s youngest travellers.
The airline was presented a prestigious Crystal Cabin Award in Hamburg last night for the improvements to the Economy Skycouch which include introducing a dedicated infant harness allowing infants to remain lying down throughout the cruise phase of flight, new infant pod, and for its modification to the existing Skycouch Cuddle Belt which means two children can share the Skycouch lying side by side.