ONGOING repair work on the Rolls-Royce engines on Air New Zealand’s Boeing 787 aircraft is being cited as a contributing factor to the carrier’s decision to suspend flights to Ho Chi Minh City and Tokyo Haneda.
On the Tokyo route, NZ will fly additional services to Narita during the upcoming Northern winter scheduling period, and the carrier will also maintain its seasonal flights to Osaka which are set to kick off next month.
Slot issues at Haneda mean the NZ aircraft spends a significant amount of time on the ground, whereas a 90 minute turnaround at Narita improves fleet utilisation and helps compensate for the 787 capacity restrictions.
The seasonal Ho Chi Minh City route has been operated between Jun and Oct for the last few years, but will not return in 2019, with the carrier noting that customers wanting to head to Vietnam will be able to fly via Singapore or Hong Kong on alliance partners.
NZ noted that ongoing engine rectifications on the 787s are likely to continue impacting the fleet until late next year.