11 Jul 2009

Joint tourism drive by Waikato and Bay of Plenty

7:44 am on 11 July 2009

Waikato and the Bay of Plenty are to join forces in a tourism drive in Australia.

Air New Zealand ended services from Hamilton - Australia in April, but the budget airline Pacific Blue is to operate six flights a week, starting in September.

Hamilton will promote the Bay of Plenty as a tourist destination for Australian arrivals and Tauranga airport will promote the flights locally.

Tauranga Mayor Stuart Crosby says getting people to Hamilton is important. He and Hamilton Mayor Bob Simcock, say the move will open previously untapped Australian tourism markets.

Despite many different operators, Hamilton airport chief executive Chris Doak says the city has had international flights for 15 years.