DavidByrne wrote:NZ516 wrote:ZK-NBT wrote:
How about a daily ATR HLZ-ZQN? Long flight but a lot cheaper to run than an A320. NZ6 did mention later not so much room for ski gear.
Interesting thought I recall a decade or so ago talk of NZ looking at more jets into the regions, IVC is the only one that got 1. I guess NZ doubled down on frequency and the A7R, that was back in the 733 days.
But the reality is in terms of new domestic routes, there surely isn't many viable ones that aren't already served? NZ are at about 90% of pre Covid levels on domestic which says more kiwis than ever are flying as what was the % of international connections on domestic before? 20-25%?
I think HLZ to ZQN would be too long in a ATR over two hours. So a 320 flight be the only option. For a Whangarei to Wellington a Q300 would fit well along with the existing AKL Q300 flights. Originally both routes were served by the Eagle Beech 1900. But only the AKL service remains. Now with the huge population growth in Northland the supply of flights has not kept up with demand.
Regarding the third question of how much percent were Int connection pax not sure how high it was.
In the back of my mind I recall something about WRE’s limitations making it impractical to run a Q300 WRE-WLG. Is that correct?
As I understand it, you'd be able to carry 50 in and out of WRE in most conditions on a Wellington flight. It might get a bit restricted in the hight of summer. You'd have to sort some fuel out as well. Charter flights have been run from WRE to NSN (amounst other places) in the distant past with the Q300 fleet. Assume they tankered fuel in from AKL on those occasions. I'd be surprised if the airline added a direct WLG flight though.
DavidByrne wrote:NZ516 wrote:In addition to the above 3C should give Kapiti Coast to CHC an ideal route for their Saab 340. The population of the Kapiti district is growing fast 50,000 and the convenience of this airport compared with using WLG is fairly obvious.
That’s true - when NZ operated into PPQ it either planned or operated CHC services briefly. 3C, with a smaller aircraft and a lower cost base, might well be able to make a go of it.
Also, I wonder whether NSN-DUD, tried briefly by Kiwi Regional, would support either an NZ Q300 or an Origin Jet-stream. I don’t see this as a route for 3C given they don’t serve either centre currently, nor for S8 (their aircraft are too small for a flight of that length IMO).
NZ ran PPQ-CHC flights for a considerable period of time. I can't recall exactly how long but believe it was a couple of years, maybe even three. It operated at the expense of one of the AKL rotations and was middle of the day.
DavidByrne wrote:NZ6 wrote:I don't think it's so much about under estimating the 'potential leisure market'. We already have baseline numbers around how many people currently board HLZ destined for ZQN? - What, if anything can the airline, tourism operators do to increase these numbers? That is the question
That's the only viable option isn't it? - Like I said in my earlier reply. You don't have a regular and reliable supply of business travelers and HLZ isn't a international visitor hub. So as both airports are end of line you're really only left with local O&D passengers.
I think the issue with "potential leisure markets" is that you don't really know how many bums you'll get on seats until you try it. Experience elsewhere shows that leisure travellers who would avoid an indirect flight will jump at the chance of a nonstop connection. Of course there's a risk attached, but a winter and/or summer peak season getaway might just work.NZ6 wrote:You talk of the global 'mega trend' but where's the evidence to suggest that'll scale down and be relevant to two relatively small markets such as this? - Ultimately will a direct flights change patronage numbers? - or reversed. Is the lack of a direct flight forcing domestic tourism into other centers? (On another note, that 'mega trend' is more about the A350/787 economics and capability vs the previous generation aircraft which makes long point to point travel possible but that's another topic)
I think that the evidence of the LCCs in Europe, using 320/738-sized aircraft shows that many city pairs which might at first appear bizarre can have a life. Of course, they try some and drop some, but they see no shame in that. Some of the routes come back seasonally year after year, even if only two- or three-times weekly. At a domestic and Transtasman level NZ is pretty much akin to an LCC in its economy offering. And in Europe, you'll see that the trend toward connecting smaller centres short-haul by LCC is accelerating, alongside a proliferation of long-haul services by major legacy carriers. Are they being over-optimistic? Perhaps; but with our relatively covid-free status in Australasia we are probably in a better position than in Europe.NZ6 wrote:ZQN isn't a rinse & repeat destination like the tropical Islands might be so unless you have a special interest in winter sports it's by in large a once off destination, well at least once every several years then once the borders open, will that interest go elsewhere.
Of course, direct flights might make a weekend away more appealing. Conferences, events, weddings and so forth also help lift some of that patronage. But the A320 at 180 odd seats is a lot of aircraft to fill on an ongoing basis.
Agree there - and this is where I get on my old hobby-horse of suggesting a need for an aircraft in between the AT7 and the 320. To me, it seems illogical that a carrier should have a fleet mix which actively militates against further route development in its core markets. But that's for another day. Yes, the 320 is large, but failing alternatives it's the only game in town.
Another fleet (A220) is a lot of complexity to introduce though. It's a shame the proposed ATR stretch never came to anything. A 90-100 seat turboprop with some commonality to the exisiting fleet would have been hard for NZ to resist.