First Class Suites Slated To Return
The acquisition of another Boeing 777 on a lease also means the return of first-class suites for paying customers on select routes.
Air New Zealand’s Boeing 777, acquired on a lease, is an ex-Cathay Pacific aircraft. As a result, it means the plane is kitted out in Cathay Pacific’s product.
This Boeing 777 comes with six first-class suites with multiple business-class seats, providing another option for those customers wanting to try something different.
The Aircraft In Question
The Boeing 777-300ER was delivered in January 2009 and registered as B-KPJ to Cathay Pacific.
During the height of the global pandemic, it was stored before being acquired by Air Lease Corporation.
At Air Lease Corporation, it was registered again as T7-SON in August 2022. Before arriving in Auckland for coverage, it spent many months on the ground in San Antonio.
Now, the plane is with Air New Zealand and is slated to be registered as ZK-OKU.
A Common Way To Increase Or Cover For Capacity
Leasing means that what Air New Zealand enters isn’t uncommon within the aviation industry.
Companies will generally look to either short-term or long-term leasing solutions to cover lost capacity or to meet additional demand that may be seen.
Covering for lost capacity could be thanks to a grounding of aircraft and supply chain problems, among other reasons.
Notably, Qantas has drafted in help from Oneworld partner Finnair with the short-term lease of Airbus A330s to cover for lost capacity and rising demand across their network.
The Air New Zealand Fleet
The latest data shows that Air New Zealand operates with nearly 100 in-service aircraft.
For regional flying, this includes ATR72s and multiple Dash 8s. Its narrowbody fleet consists of Airbus A320ceo and neo family types.
The next-generation narrowbodies have been slowly replacing existing types. However, thanks to continued supply chain problems, these have been parked and removed from schedules numerous times.
Air New Zealand’s widebody fleet consists of Boeing 787s and 777s. However, the airline will eventually transition towards a fleet of only Boeing 787s for widebody long-haul flying.