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Air New Zealand Repaints de Havilland Q300

Photo : Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand has announced that the remaining de Havilland Q300 aircraft still in the teal Pacific Wave livery will feature iconic black and white, the current livery.

The Q300 is the smallest plane in the airline’s fleet and the remaining eight aircraft are the only jet donning the teal Pacific Wave livery. The airline said that it is the end of an era as the original livery with more than eighty years of history, it started with the creation of Tasman Empire Airways Limited (TEAL) and now become Air New Zealand. Air New Zealand started using the black and white livery in the 2010s.

The livery transformation will be taking place in New Zealand, with the support of Airbus. It provides the perfect location to repaint turboprop aircraft. Airbus facility is normally used to repaint the military. The aircraft were previously painted off-shore in Australia and it is the first time the aircraft have been fully repainted in the country.

The eight aircraft will go through the repaint process over the next four months and expect to finish the transformation by July, in time to meet the surging demand during the school holiday.

“We’re really excited about this opportunity to work with Airbus on the repainting of these planes which help connect our customers to the regions – from Hokitika, Gisborne, Napier, Rotorua, Whangarei and beyond. It’s fantastic to have the capability to do this in our own backyard.” Brett Daley, Air New Zealand’s Group General Manager of Engineering and Maintenance, said.

Air New Zealand purchased its first Q300 in 2005. The aircraft can accommodate 50 passengers, with the design of 2-2 configuration and a seat pitch of 30-33 inches. The airline has 23 Q300 and 29 ATR-72 aircraft in its turboprop.

In response to the climate change. Earlier, the airline revealed that the fleet plan of acquiring the first electric aircraft by 2030. In addition, Q300 would be replaced with an aircraft that operate on alternative power after 2030.

Network Expansion

After keeping its head above water for the last three years, Air New Zealand has been expanding its wings again. The flag carrier resumed its daily flight to Shanghai in May as Kiwi has gone further in partnering Air China to provide four-times-a-week service to Beijing. China was New Zealand’s second-largest international visitor market in 2019.

In the meantime, the airline is expecting the travel demand will be increased during the winter. Earlier, it announced that the seasonal service to Sunshine Coast, Australia will be launched in June. Sunshine Coast will be the ninth destination in its neighboring country. Earlier, the airline resumed the service to Bali, Indonesia, one of Kiwis’ favorite travel destinations.

Pete Ainsley

Author

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