Air New Zealand Chief Customer and Sales Officer Leanne Geraghty says the new aircraft is a welcome sign that the airline is doing what it does best – keeping Kiwis connected by adding additional capacity. “We’re focused on growing our domestic network and this A321neo is especially configured for domestic flying to add almost 50 additional seats per flight compared to our A320s. Our customers have told us, departing on schedule and reaching their destination on time is incredibly important. With the exciting introduction of the larger A321neo domestic aircraft, we’ll commence boarding five minutes earlier and encourage all customers to be at the gate ready to board at minimum, 15 minutes before departure, to ensure an on-time departure.”
The new aircraft is undergoing five days of pre-service readiness in the Auckland Hangars before it commences its first flight on 8 November from Auckland to Wellington. The new aircraft is the first of two new A321neos to join our domestic fleet this year. The second will arrive later this year, donned with Air New Zealand’s world-first black Star Alliance livery. Three more A321neos are expected to arrive next year with the final two scheduled for 2026. The A321neos will predominately fly between Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Queenstown and Dunedin. Air New Zealand has an average fleet age of 7.3 years making it one of the youngest and most efficient fleets in the world.