Air New Zealand is to withdraw from London altogether in late October 2020 when its last remaining route, London Heathrow – Los Angeles – Auckland is suspended.
Air New Zealand has cited the myriad of one-stop options that are now available for passengers travelling between Europe and New Zealand as the reason for the suspension.
It is of course not the only airline to cut one-stop routes between Europe and Australia / New Zealand. They are expensive to operate with relatively high crewing costs and poor aircraft utilisation. However, it is noteworthy that Air New Zealand has chosen to withdraw from London altogether, in contrast to Qantas which has sought to retain a presence in London.
Air New Zealand was also a popular option for passengers flying London – Los Angeles direct. However, with one daily flight, Air New Zealand has become less competitive against the joint schedules offered by AA and BA.
Air New Zealand currently offers passengers the option to fly from London Heathrow to Auckland via Singapore through a codeshare with Singapore Airlines. It has said it will offer more codeshare options to passengers after the cessation of London – Los Angeles.
Separately, Air New Zealand has announced its intention to fly from New York Newark to Auckland non-stop with the Boeing 787-9 aircraft.
Air New Zealand in London
Air New Zealand, dubbed “The Ritz Of The Skies”, began flying from London on 26 August 1982. This was initially on Thursdays and Sundays only from London Gatwick via Los Angeles and Tahiti on a Boeing 747 aircraft. Until relatively recently, Air New Zealand served New Zealand from London via Hong Kong and Los Angeles.