30 May 2009

Airline cuts seen as inducing tourists to go elsewhere

7:09 am on 30 May 2009

The Intercity coach line group believes cuts to international flights by Air New Zealand will force tourists to head to other destinations.

Air NZ has cut its flight capacity a further 3% because of falling demand triggered by the global recession.

Services from Hong Kong to London will reduce from daily to five days per week. Some domestic flights will also be reduced in frequency.

The airline says it's identified a potential surplus of up to 40 domestic cabin crew and pilots plus 40 jobs at Christchurch and Auckland airports.

Intercity chief executive Malcolm Johns says tourism competitors such as Australia are stepping-up their marketing and this could threaten New Zealand's market share.

Mr Johns says tourists are looking for good deals more than ever and New Zealand will lose if it can't provide them.