Children travelling alone
COVID-19: Children travelling alone
As a result of the impact of COVID-19, from 28 March 2020 until further notice, Air New Zealand will no longer be accepting children travelling alone for international or NZ domestic travel.
Customers who want to make changes to bookings for international travel for children travelling alone can contact Air New Zealand to make these.
If you have booked flights through a travel agent, please reach out to them directly to make changes.
When checking in at the airport, the child travelling will be given a special wristband. When they reach certain stages of their journey and their Airband is scanned by staff, text message updates will be sent to up to five nominated contacts (the parent or guardian and drop off and pick up contacts). Text messages* are sent at the following stages:
- On check-in at the airport to confirm registration
- When boarding the plane
- When their flight has landed and they are handed over to ground staff
- When they are picked up by the designated pick-up person
* Text message notifications are currently not available for travel from Niue due to limited mobile services.
Children 5 to 11 years can travel alone provided they meet the unaccompanied minors conditions.
Travel as a child travelling alone is charged at the best available adult fare. Children travelling unaccompanied have the same entitlements on board as adult fares based on the fare purchased. Pre-selecting seats and Skycouch™ are not available for children travelling alone.
No - must travel with an adult 15 years or older, except for flights to and from Canada where the adult must be 16 years or older
(travelling without an adult 15 years or older)
Yes - eligible on selected routes and must use Airband
Yes - may travel alone or can use Airband at parent/guardian request, on selected routes
* Applies if the child has not been booked as a child travelling alone prior to check-in at the airport.
Multiple children travelling alone
Children under the age of 12 years must be declared as travelling alone at the time of booking if not accompanied by a person aged 15 years or over, except for flights to and from Canada where the adult must be 16 years or older. For example:
- A 14 year old person cannot travel with an infant
- A 15 year old person can travel with a 12 year old and a 2 year old
- A 12 year old person can travel with a 8 year old, but the 8 year old must be declared as an unaccompanied minor
Airpoints™ frequent flyers rewards
For our youngest frequent flyers who use the service frequently, we offer a discount on the children travelling alone service fees. For every 10 one-way journeys booked for children travelling alone, the child named on the booking will be rewarded with Airpoints Dollars™ to the value of 10% of the total service fees paid over the 10 one-way journeys.
Remember to add the child's Airpoints number to each booking. Their Airpoints account will automatically be credited with Airpoints Dollars after the 10th one-way journey is made. The 10 one-way journeys excludes any flights that have been refunded.
Your child doesn't have an Airpoints account yet? Join now
If you have a fully refundable fare and wish to cancel your ticket, we will refund both the cost of your ticket and the children travelling alone service fee.
Update contact details on your booking
If plans have changed, update drop off and pick up contact details online by managing your booking. Here you can also nominate and manage who you would like to receive text message updates. Alternatively, please contact us.
Save contact details in your Airpoints account
If you are regularly making bookings for children travelling alone, speed up the booking process next time by saving drop off and pick up contact details in your Airpoints account. Just sign into your account and update your travel preferences under My Profile to enable a Saved Contacts tab.
Check-in for children travelling alone is available at Special Assistance counters. Please allow an additional 20 minutes to complete check-in. Staff will check your ID, contact details and issue your child with an Airband. Don't forget photo ID for you and if your child is travelling internationally, their passport and any other travel documents required.
At some airports you will be able to escort your child to the departure gate. Where this is not possible, staff will escort your child through security and to the departure gate for handover to cabin crew. Please note that the adult dropping off your child must remain at the airport until the flight has departed.
During their trip
The option to select your child's seat is unavailable for children travelling alone. Your child will be seated near crew work areas so they can easily be supervised during the flight. Cabin crew are required to activate parental locks on inflight entertainment screens of all children travelling alone.
On landing, your child will be escorted through the arrivals process to collect any baggage and be handed over to the designated pick up person after ID is checked.
Delays and disrupts
We will contact you in the event of delays that will cause impact or where the flight is diverted to an alternative airport. There may be times, due to weather, where alternative road transport is offered. We will discuss this with you prior to your child departing on alternative transport.
You can also receive real-time flight information and any changes right to your phone. Simply download the Air NZ mobile app and add your child's flight.
Food will be provided in accordance with standard delay protocols for all passengers. If an overnight stay is required, we will provide accommodation and a female team member will look after your child through the night.
On international flights where meals are served, you can request a child meal or choose a special meal for diet or religious reasons. Just select your preferred option when booking online.
On our Trans-Tasman and Pacific Island flights where Seats to Suit is offered, movies, meals and drinks are only provided when purchasing The Works or Works Deluxe. If selecting a Seat only or Seat + Bag option, you may wish to purchase vouchers at the airport so snacks and drinks can be purchased on board from the Inflight Bites menu. Cash is not accepted on board.
You are welcome to supply your child with a snack box, however please be mindful of restrictions on liquids, aerosols and gels flying internationally that apply to drinks and liquids like yoghurt. All uneaten non-packaged foods must be disposed of on landing.
Our staff will do all they can to ensure a safe and comfortable journey however they cannot administer medication or ensure your child takes medication at specified times. If your child has a disability we will do all we can to allow them to travel unaccompanied, however this may not be possible in all situations.
To avoid disappointment on the day of travel please contact our Paxcare Team in advance to discuss your child's requirements and if they have a medical condition that may require clearance to travel.
Phone: +64 9 255 7757