Travellers between Hong Kong and New Zealand have just had their options expanded with the launching of Hong Kong Airlines’ inaugural daily direct service to Auckland, which landed in New Zealand’s most populous city on Friday, November 11. The carrier is deploying its A330-200 aircraft on the route, which offers a total of 283 seats including 24 in business class.

Passengers on the first flight received a commemorative certificate and boarding pass envelope, while Auckland Airport arranged a traditional water cannon salute, and a ribbon and cake cutting ceremony to mark the new service.

“So far, we have received an overwhelming response from travellers since tickets became available for purchase,” said Hong Kong Airlines’ chief commercial officer, Li Dianchun. “As a result, we have already increased our service to ten times weekly from December 11, 2016 to February 13, 2017.

“We also anticipate strong demand out of the New Zealand market to Hong Kong and connecting on our network in Asia. We hope that our new route will further strengthen the cultural, tourism and business ties between these two countries.”

The new Hong Kong Airlines route comes as numerous other carriers have begun expanding their New Zealand services. Last month (October 2016), rival Hong Kong airline Cathay Pacific began deploying its A350-900 aircraft on its Hong Kong-Auckland service, while Emirates recently moved to five daily A380 services between Dubai and New Zealand, comprising two direct services and three via Australia. Meanwhile, Chinese carrier Tianjin Airlines announced plans to begin a three-times-weekly service between Tianjin and Auckland starting in December.

Details for the Hong Kong-Auckland route are as follows (all times are local):

Flight No. From To Departs Arrives Days
HX021 Hong Kong Auckland 1520 0730+1 Daily
HX022 Auckland Hong Kong 0930 1555


Additional service between December 11, 2016 and February 13, 2017:

Flight No From To Departs Arrives Days
HX027 Hong Kong Auckland 0155 1855 Wed, Fri, Sun
HX028 Auckland Hong Kong 0100 0805