My initial thoughts are...forget the E190's. NZ won't do that. They've already go excess fleet at their disposal with little to no P.I and the Tasman not at full capacity. I'd imagine there'll also be 'outrage' of using offshore based Pilots when we've got highly skilled unemployed ones here coupled with government handouts **cough cough** sorry loan.
So if we're back to the A320 we're looking at 2 weekly at 75% at an unknown "yield". That's the kicker of it all. If you could fly once a week if you were making solid double digit yield.
I don't disagree with that - in the short term. I doubt very much that NTL or CBR would stand a chance of serious consideration until the Tasman market has fully recovered - and until the North American market is also back to all destinations being served. Bujt in the medium term, I do see an advantage in having a smaller jet for thinner domestic and regional routes, and I think that it could eventually be a workable-sized fleet.
I guess what I'm saying is filling planes is half the equation.. perhaps we could look at VA's seasonal service that didn't grow and or that fact NZ didn't continue it post Freedom nor pick it up again under Fyfe or Luxon who both grew the airline considerably as signs for the second half of that equation.
Please don't think I'm completely disagreeing with you or NTL. Clearly there's something there. It's been done before, twice by two different airlines.
I also accept that filling planes is only half the issue - and we don't have the info re VA's yield. My conclusion is also pretty much the same as yours: clearly there's something there, and I'd suggest that in the medium term NZ should keep NTL on its radar, and that it shouldn't be rejected out of hand as a possibility.
How many people paid positive yield fares WLG-MEL-WLG.
I understood this sector on it's own was wickedly unprofitable which was partially why they switched to MEL eventually although I recall that side of it being kept reasonably quiet.
I assume you meant WLG-CBR-WLG? Again, we just don't know. I suspect SQ did have trouble attracting pax at decent yields, even on WLG-MEL, as the last time I went to HBA I took a routing including SQ from AKL-WLG-MEL-HBA, sold by consolidators at the lowest price on the day. But my point here is that if WLG-CBR could support 2-3x A320 equivalents at low yields, then maybe AKL-CBR with the same frequency could work with higher yields and potentially be profitable.
Overall, I'm thinking of the grander strategy for NZ. It's operating in a Single Aviation Market with Australia, but is still very NZ-focused. Efforts at establishing a domestic operation in Australia have been and gone three times - once when the Australian government pulled the plug on an NZ-"own metal" proposal, then with Ansett, and latterly with Virgin. I can't see them trying this again in the near future, especially with the current level of competition there in the domestic market. Serving points to the west beyond Australia is not going to happen unless the current "no more one-stop services" policy is abandoned (though I confess I find the suggestion someone made a while back for a resumption of LHR services via PER to be intriguing, and more plausible than almost any other operation to Europe in my view). So that leaves serving Australian cities via NZ to points eastward - what I call the "Finnair strategy" (which has done remarkably well for that carrier, and has resulted in a plethora of secondary points being served both to the west and east of Helsinki).
Of course NZ's "home" market is only 30 million compared with Finnair's "home" market of several hundred million, so let's not imagine miracles. But a steady growth in destinations served in Australia (to at least 11, including CBR and NTL) and a corresponding growth over time in routes to North America (LAS, DEN and YYZ have been on NZ's radar before) - and possibly even to South America once it recovers from its present covid, economic and political crises (I'm not holding my breath for that) would position NZ's offering very comfortably in a competitive transpacific market where it competes with QF, AA, TN, FJ and DL. This is not a short-term strategy, but medium-term (five to ten years perhaps).
But if not that, what should NZ's strategy be? Conservatively maintain the status quo? I don't see that being a winner in a growing global market where point-to-point travel is becoming increasingly offered over hubbing: the use of AKL for both point-to-point and hubbing is a natural advantage that needs IMO to be grasped.
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