Air New Zealand Group General Manager Australasia Bruce Parton said the airline was delighted to have won the recent Government tender to operate the services.

"Air New Zealand has a significant presence in the Tasman market and has a long and well-established relationship with the people of Norfolk Island, having been a trusted air service provider to customers there since 1947," he says.

The Australian services will complement Air New Zealand's weekly services between Auckland and Norfolk Island.

"Air New Zealand will now be flying five days a week into Norfolk Island from either Australia or New Zealand, with services on Monday, Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday."

Mr Parton says the new services, utilising a 168 seat A320, are a good fit into the airline's short-haul schedule.

"We are excited about the opportunity to deliver our award-winning, uniquely Kiwi experience to customers who will be travelling with us between Australia and Norfolk Island."

Mr Parton hopes the new services will provide a tourism boost to Norfolk Island, which is famed for its natural beauty and fascinating history.

"Another benefit for our customers and Norfolk Island Tourism is our ability to offer dual destination travel - for example, Australian travellers will now be able to choose to visit both Norfolk Island and New Zealand on the same itinerary."

"We're also able to leverage our strong distribution platform in Australia to assist with the ongoing promotion of Norfolk Island as a destination, and are looking forward to working closely with Norfolk Island Tourism to support these services."

Air New Zealand will initially operate two services per week between Sydney and Norfolk Island (on a Monday and Friday) and two a week between Brisbane and Norfolk Island (Tuesday and Saturday), with services to commence on 2 March 2012.

Mr Parton is confident that there is good opportunity for Air New Zealand to build on the proposed schedule and deliver additional services during busy tourism months.

"We will certainly look at operating additional services during peak seasons and adjusting our capacity as appropriate to meet ongoing demand," he says.

Customers will be able to select from Air New Zealand's innovative Seats to Suit product which enables customers to tailor their travel according to their needs. Four fare product offerings include Seat only, a Seat and checked bag, The Works (which includes inflight entertainment, meals and drinks) or Works Deluxe, which adds in premium check in, priority baggage, lounge access where available, an additional checked bag, and a guaranteed empty seat next to you in the air.

Proposed schedule:

Sydney-Norfolk Island (Monday and Friday) depart 0935 arrive 1240
Norfolk Island-Sydney (Monday and Friday) depart 1340 arrive 1610

Brisbane-Norfolk Island (Tuesday and Saturday) depart 1010 arrive 1400
Norfolk Island-Brisbane (Tuesday and Saturday) depart 1500 arrive 1610

Flight bookings will be available from tomorrow.


Ends

Issued by Air New Zealand Public Affairs ph +64 21 747 320