China Southern Airlines to fly Airbus A380 to New Zealand
The airline will fly one of its four A380s to Auckland (photo: Kentaro Lemoto / Flickr)
By 3 News online staff
Asia’s largest airline will fly the world’s largest passenger plane to Auckland next month with 250 Chinese travel agents on board.
China Southern Airlines has chosen New Zealand as the destination of its yearly event in a push to get Chinese tourists using their direct service to Auckland, which started last year.
They will use their newly commissioned Airbus A380 for the flight after the Chinese Government finally gave it regulatory approval to be used on long-haul routes.
The superjumbo will make two return trips to Auckland from Gaungzhou, China's third biggest city, replacing the service currently operated by an Airbus A330.
Auckland Airport spokesperson Glenn Wedlock, says the trip is a great opportunity to promote New Zealand for an emerging market.
“This is an incredible opportunity for the individual operators and destinations that are part of their tour, as well as for the New Zealand tourism industry as a whole,” he told the New Zealand Herald.
It will be the third airline to fly the plane to New Zealand, behind Emirates and Qantas.
The contingent will spend five days travelling around the North Island visiting attractions like Rotorua, Waitomo Caves and Hobbiton in Matamata.