The Government has asked airlines to limit the number of available seats on international flights inbound to New Zealand, in order to better match arrivals with availability of hotel quarantine rooms. Similarly, the New South Wales Government has limited the number of arriving travellers into Sydney Airport to 450 per day for the same reason.

Lufthansa has introduced optional Covid 19 testing at Frankfurt Airport, available before you embark on your international trip. The results are available within 3 hours, allowing travellers to comply with the growing number of countries opting for an actual negative test result as opposed to a  mandatory quarantine at their destination. 

Emirates has re-started their New Zealand operations this week. Initially a 3 x weekly flight, the Boeing 777-300 will fly from Auckland with a stop enroute in Australia to Dubai. By September the airline plans to re-instate non-stop services to Dubai. Their A380 is scheduled to return to Auckland in November.

Singapore Airlines has added a 3rd weekly flight between Singapore and Auckland, commencing this week. Flights will operate Wed, Thu, Sat. Singapore Airlines also operates once weekly Singapore to Christchurch. Singapore is now open for both north and southbound transits. NZ passport holders cannot stop in Singapore and visit the city.

Air New Zealand has returned to Shanghai and Tokyo from this week. There is one flight per week to each city. In response to the Melbourne Coronavirus lockdown, the airline has altered operations of its weekly Melbourne flight allowing travellers to fly Melbourne to Auckland only. They will not be uplifting passengers on the Auckland to Melbourne outbound flight. Auckland – San Francisco resumes  on 21 July and Auckland – Los Angeles returns to a daily return service from 21 July – 31 August. There is an additional service between Auckland and Hong Kong also poised to start.

JetStar has resumed its New Zealand domestic operation resulting in some welcome additional capacity on the main trunk routes in NZ. Jetstar is also good for keeping local airfares in check; please support them.

Qantas has brought forward its Boeing 747-400 retirement date. The first Qantas 747 arrived in 1971 and so the airline has had 747s in its fleet for the best part of 50 years. Qantas set the tone for innovation and glamour internationally at the time with the upper deck ‘Çaptain Cook Club’ lounge (pictured). The final flight will be 22 July when their last 747-400 departs Sydney for Los Angeles – the aircraft then flying onto the wreckers yard in the Mojave Desert.