Great to update you all on our work as we continue our recovery from Covid-19. It has certainly been a challenging time for airline and staff. We really appreciate the support of our loyal regional customers who are also doing it tough through Covid-19.
The pandemic has changed the size of our business and as such we have been required to relook at what we do and how we do it. Through that process we have decided to expedite the transition of the ATR-72 onto the Chatham Islands service. We are excited to announce that this is only a few weeks away from happening. Our beautiful Convairs will remain in operation through until 2021 when we will start to phase them out completely. It will be a sad day when we witness our last Convair service. They have been the backbone of our airline for a quarter century!
We also want to acknowledge our loyal customer base through our brand-new Frequent Flyer Programme called ‘Green Miles’. Earn points every time you fly and use them to fly anywhere on our network….even a holiday to the Chathams!
I hope you enjoy this newsletter. And thanks for your ongoing support!
That's sad to hear but, I guess, inevitable. I wonder if any (besides the one a block down from me) will be preserved in NZ? Is there much of a market for them as flyers or spares sources somewhere like Canada?
Post by planewriting on Sept 30, 2020 15:16:54 GMT 12
The DC-3 has not been operating scheduled services now for about two years. Late yesterday afternoon however I was out at the airport for about an hour seeing my daughter off. On arrival the DC-3 was just starting up and shut down just as we were leaving. The engineers have been preparing her for the summer $99.00 scenic flight operation based at Classic Flyers. In all, the DC-3 has taken approximately 3000 passengers on Tauranga scenics.
Post by harrysone on Sept 30, 2020 17:35:04 GMT 12
It appears that New cockpit door regulations are the culprit forcing early retirement with the CV580s ...too expensive to fit to elderly airframes when they were scheduled to retire in 2-3 years anyway. Their Alison engines and props still highly priced items, they will fetch quite a bit but airframes probably won’t. One should be preserved for prosperity i reckon!
Last Edit: Sept 30, 2020 20:43:48 GMT 12 by harrysone
Oh wow, I thought those scenics were run on days off their scheduled airline route flights. I did not realise it had been taken off the routes. Sad.
I believe the cessation occurred when Whakatane ops were tightened up. As far as Air Chathams is concerned, regarding the DC-3 scenics is concerned, it is cheaper to base it at Tauranga than at Mangere where they paid for it be parked outside. Chief DC-3 pilot Keith Mitchell used to fly in from Christchurch, at cost, whereas as new chief DC-3 pilot, Adrian Whitehead, lives just a few miles away at Papamoa and so his flight schedule is geared to have him home to cover each DC-3 weekend. The other crew are similarly rostered so that they travel down from Auckland together by car. The airline has a house at Whakatane for crew. There is sufficient space to accommodate the regular scheduled Whakatane crews along with the DC-3 folk.
Post by planewriting on Oct 1, 2020 12:06:10 GMT 12
Actually not many people from cruise ships have been on the DC-3. Many overseas visitors to Tauranga had already made bookings to go to Hobbiton or Rotorua as part of their cruise package. Most DC-3 seats are sold in advance however we sometimes can take last minute walk ups. There is now a hop on hop off bus stopping at Classic Flyers and on occasion we have managed to take such passengers.
Reports of my demise are over stated! I have avoided becoming your next coke can & in fact had my first road trip in late 2019 from AKL to Castlecliff in Whanganui where I'm retiring under the flight path to eventually become accommodation (lieral Air BnB) I've got my own Facebook page with lots of photos www.facebook.com/zkcif/ For my quick life history in 5 minutes watch this video www.facebook.com/zkcif/videos/480623502540855/