28 Mar 2013

End to standby could mean higher cost flights for some

6:11 am on 28 March 2013

A travel expert says Air New Zealand's decision to remove standby flights will disadvantage people living outside the country's main centres.

Air New Zealand announced last Friday it would scrap standby seats from 6 May and replace them with 100,000 more pre-booked tickets this year.

House of Travel commercial director Brent Thomas said the decision makes sense as many travellers prefer to snap up deals and book flights in advance on the airline's Grabaseat website.

However he said the cheaper flights are usually between Auckland, Wellington, Chistchurch and Dunedin and for people elsewhere, no longer having the option of a standby flight could mean more expensive flights.