American Airlines has announced two new routes to New Zealand from next year.

The carrier will launch the only nonstop route between Los Angeles and Christchurch in October 2020, with a three times weekly service operating from October 2020 until March 2021. The 13-hour flight will be served by a B787-8 aircraft with 20 business class and 28 premium economy seats.

Tickets for the new route will go on sale on November 30, and AA says that its joint venture with Qantas will enable customers to connect on from Christchurch to both Wellington and Melbourne.

Meanwhile the airline will also launch flights between Dallas Fort Worth and Auckland, with the route also operating between October 2020 and March 2021. Flights will initially operate three times per week using a B787-9 aircraft, before moving to daily from December 1, 2020.

Tickets for the Dallas-Auckland route will also go on sale on November 30. AA already operates a seasonal service between Los Angeles and Auckland, a route which will recommence three weeks earlier next winter.

Commenting on the news Vasu Raja, American’s Senior Vice President of Network Strategy, said:

“The South Island sums up everything that our customers are looking for in New Zealand – adventure, culture and wildlife found nowhere else.

“We want to make their lifelong dreams a reality and bring New Zealand’s beauty even closer as the gateway to the South Island where you can drive, hike, cruise and fly to a variety of classic New Zealand experiences.”

“Now, we’re able to get customers from places like Louisville, Savannah or Monterrey, Mexico, all the way to New Zealand with just one stop.”

The news follows Air New Zealand’s announcement that it will drop its long-standing London route in favour of a new Auckland-New York Newark service in October 2020.