Air New Zealand B787 Dreamliner cabin crew

Air New Zealand is set to introduce its Boeing 777-200 on its direct services between Sydney and Rarotonga.

The airline will begin flying the aircraft from 31 March 2017 and will offer its award winning interior products including lie flat Business Premier beds and comfortable Premium Economy seats.

The service also introduces Air New Zealand’s unique Economy Skycouch to the Sydney-Rarotonga route for the first time allowing customers to book a row of three economy seats with customised footrests that raise to a horizontal position, creating a flat flexible space to stretch out and relax.

Air New Zealand’s Acting General Manager Australia, Blair Catton, says the 777-200 will increase seat capacity on the route by more than 30% and is an exciting proposition for Australians wanting to visit the Cook Islands.

“The 777-200 has proved hugely popular with customers who appreciate Air New Zealand’s distinctive interior fit out as well as the unique kiwi service and design features offered on this aircraft,” he says.

Cook Islands Tourism Corporation Chief Executive Officer, Halatoa Fua, says Australian visitor arrivals are up 16% so far this calendar year. The destination is also working to increase its premium tourism offering.

“Rarotonga is surrounded by an untouched crystal clear turquoise lagoon and offers an incredible cultural experience that travellers can enjoy while staying at a range of accommodation options, and eating at the wide variety of restaurants and cafes serving world-class cuisine,” Fua says.

“Those after a more serene and romantic experience can also hop over to Aitutaki, which is just a short 45-minute flight north of Rarotonga and is ideal for weddings or honeymoons.”

In line with this announcement, Air New Zealand has released a special Premium Economy online fare for $509 including taxes ex SYD and a Business Premier fare for $590 including taxes ex SYD. Direct Services only, valid for travel from 31 March 2017 to 29 June 2017.

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management