Air New Zealand to withdraw from London UK

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This topic contains 36 replies, has 17 voices, and was last updated by  SimonS1 28 Oct 2019
at 15:18
.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 37 total)

  • AMcWhirter
    Participant

    Breaking news this evening.

    Air NZ says it has decided to cancel its London Heathrow service from October 2020.

    Instead, and perhaps to rival Qantas, it plans to launch a non-stop Auckland-New York service.

    Further news to follow.

    2 users thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    That’s rather sad. NZ has for decades been the link between the UK and its most distant ‘colony’ or Commonwealth member. The Queen has a very special fondness for the country.


    EU_Flyer
    Participant

    That’s surprising given that I thought NZ had a particularly solid following in the US market for their LAX – LHR sector.

    Maybe the costs were too high and competition too great?


    rferguson
    Participant

    Will mean UK job losses also. Air NZ has a base of LHR Flight Attendants that operate LHR-LAX-LHR with the AKL based crews operating AKL-ALX-AKL.


    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    I have written a piece which I would think would be posted tomorrow.

    NZ’s CEO said that just seven per cent of London-Auckland travellers were using its direct flight via LAX.

    The route was launched almost 40 years ago and in that time the choice and variety of routings available have changed beyond recognition.

    It means the rest would be taking the many indirect airlines … mostly via the Gulf, Asia and mainland China.

    Some years ago NZ did, for a while, also operate AKL-LHR via HKG using a B777-200ER. But that route was dropped and, at that time, the then CEO said the direct routing via LAX would be retained for the sake of linking New Zealand with Europe.

    BA has not served New Zealand for many years. It means that once Air NZ exits the route there will no longer be a direct Europe-New Zealand service.

    No schedule details are available for the proposed AKL-NYC (EWR) non-stop flight. We know the aircraft type will be a B787 but the seating configuration is unknown.


    AMcWhirter
    Participant

    Just seen that our piece is now posted online.


    capetonianm
    Participant

    I think that for a while they had two LHR-AKL daily services, one via LAX and one via SIN. I am not sure why anyone would go via LAX unless they wanted to stop in the USA, due to the need to go through USA immigration formalities even if only in transit using the ‘direct’ (i.e. single aircraft/flight number/flight coupon) service.

    Another victim of EK.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    I believe the decision was made by the ‘acting’ CEO.
    ANZ has appointed a new CEO but not yet in the role.
    The LAX – LHR route has high loadings as does the ex Auckland-LAX route thus this decision must be based on high costs.
    I believe that ANZ may here have compounded an error made some years back when they axed the AKL – SIN -LHR route in favour of AKL-LAX-LHR.
    Possibly the reason the short lived AKL-HKG-LHR route did not do well was the strength of the CX offering out of HK with 8 flights a day to the UK
    Cathay leases the vacated LHR slot from ANZ for one of their 5 daily flights to LHR.
    With the strong heritage and much traffic between New Zealand and the UK it seems to me to be unlikely that this is the end of the story as possibly a wrong decision has been again made.


    Bullfrog
    Participant

    Times are changing .. I was fortunate to fly ANZ to LAX, and connected to their LAX to SYD .. yes, they operated a 747 to SYD in addition to their 747 to AKL.

    First Class consisted of 12 lie flat chairs (not beds) & the food on board was restaurant quality, with 100% coverage for every passenger.

    The service continued for a while after 9/11, and the LAX to SYD was axed.


    tomwjsimpson
    Participant

    Given they still lease the slot they used for HKG, I wonder who will take up these slots? Surely not another EK, EY or QR frequency . .


    SimonS1
    Participant

    I believe the decision was made by the ‘acting’ CEO.
    ANZ has appointed a new CEO but not yet in the role.
    The LAX – LHR route has high loadings as does the ex Auckland-LAX route thus this decision must be based on high costs.
    I believe that ANZ may here have compounded an error made some years back when they axed the AKL – SIN -LHR route in favour of AKL-LAX-LHR.
    Possibly the reason the short lived AKL-HKG-LHR route did not do well was the strength of the CX offering out of HK with 8 flights a day to the UK
    Cathay leases the vacated LHR slot from ANZ for one of their 5 daily flights to LHR.
    With the strong heritage and much traffic between New Zealand and the UK it seems to me to be unlikely that this is the end of the story as possibly a wrong decision has been again made.

    It’s inconceivable that the new CEO wouldn’t have been aware and approved the decision. Interims don’t make decisions like this.

    The reasons were publicly announced – only 7% of travellers from NZ to London use the LAX route, many new alternatives to NZ via other hubs since they started in 1982 (ie ME3), competition from US carriers on the LAX-LHR route mean it isn’t viable, and their partnership with Singapore means they can keep their customers happy.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    cwoodward
    Participant

    SimonS1 wrote:

    ‘It’s inconceivable that the new CEO wouldn’t have been aware and approved the decision. Interims don’t make decisions like this’.

    Really ? I disagree, Simon yours is a an opinion as is mine and perhaps mine is better informed as is yours.
    Quote
    ‘In fact only 7% of passengers use the route on ANZ’
    BUT
    How many fly to NZ ex UK and vv by other routes and carriers p.a.?
    Year to September 2019 the total was 238,000.
    A significant number of which one would expect New Zealand’s legacy carrier to have a strong share.


    SimonS1
    Participant

    SimonS1 wrote:

    ‘It’s inconceivable that the new CEO wouldn’t have been aware and approved the decision. Interims don’t make decisions like this’.

    Really ? I disagree, Simon yours is a an opinion as is mine and perhaps mine is better informed as is yours.
    Quote
    ‘In fact only 7% of passengers use the route on ANZ’
    BUT
    How many fly to NZ ex UK and vv by other routes and carriers p.a.?
    Year to September 2019 the total was 238,000.
    A significant number of which one would expect New Zealand’s legacy carrier to have a strong share.

    I’m only stating what the Acting CEO said in his press conference.

    He said that only 7% of travellers from NZ to London use the LAX route (the others use Singapore, Qatar, Etihad, Emirates, Cathay etc, most of which weren’t there when ANZ started the route in 1982). So Air NZ is struggling to compete on the NZ to London route.

    He also as far as passengers travelling only from LAX to London are concerned the competition had intensified significantly from US carriers.

    That is his explanation not my opinion.

    I do think it is highly unlikely the incoming new CEO would not have been made aware of a decision to discontinue a route like this.


    cwoodward
    Participant

    Simon1S
    I appreciate your explanation and don’t for one moment disagree with the accuracy of the quote made above.

    However as the new CEO appointment was made only on the 10th inst to commence in March 2020 I do disagree with your assumption that he would have been fully aware of this decision particularly as although a New Zealander he is not from the Airline Industry. The announcement was made by a bean counter who as a breed have a history of making wrong short term expedient decisions in the airline industry. This is of course just my opinion and others may well disagree.
    My view on the matter is simply that: I suspect that a wrong decision has been made or that there are more announcements to come the airline re this route.

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