As the launch customer for the 787-9, Air New Zealand is the first to operate the revolutionary aircraft to the China market.
General Manager China Nick Judd says the arrival of the distinctive black aircraft bearing the New Zealand fern and Koru was a fitting way for us to celebrate eight years of operating between China and New Zealand. “The 787-9 Dreamliner signals a new era in long haul travel, offering our China customers the very latest in onboard technology, including the innovative Economy Skycouch, award winning lie flat Business Premier seats and spacious new Premium Economy seating.”
The China team kicked off their “Fly Happy” celebration with a cocktail and dinner event for 100 guests, giving them the opportunity to experience Premium Economy and the Skycouch display seats during the reception.
Prior to departure in Auckland, passengers were treated to complimentary Asian-inspired mocktails while enjoying some music before the aircraft took off toward Shanghai for the first time.
Before the aircraft left Shanghai, China-based cabin crew performed a welcome haka at the boarding gate and the Wellington Ukulele Orchestra serenaded the passengers.
Air New Zealand is the only airline to offer a daily direct service between Shanghai and Auckland with convenient onward connections to its 25 domestic New Zealand destinations.
Bilingual flight attendants are employed on our Shanghai services. Our crew are trained in New Zealand, understanding both New Zealand and Chinese cultures, so they’re able to offer a uniquely Kiwi onboard experience the Chinese customers feel very comfortable with.
The 787-9 Dreamliner will be scheduled on the daily direct Shanghai-Auckland service from mid December 2014.