21 January 2010
There was something different about four recent flights into Auckland Airport. All four were charter flights from Japan filled to the brim with tourists booked through Japanese travel agents.
The flights arrived weekly from December 29, 2009 to January 19, 2010, using planes hired from Air New Zealand. Each group stayed six days, travelling around New Zealand on special organised tours.
It’s a great example if an airport working alongside airlines to improve tourism in New Zealand and a practice the airport is keen to encourage.
The passengers were treated to a special welcoming package that included a huge water fountain over the planes as they arrived, a special Maori welcome and songs, VIP lanes at customs and immigration, and special inter-terminal buses.
Helen Li, Auckland Airport co-ordinator for the project, says the extra effort was much appreciated. “All the passengers were really interested, they especially enjoyed listening to the songs. It’s a great way to spend the waiting time.”