An Air New Zealand plane waits on the tarmac. Photo: FILE/18091012
Air New Zealand will not be reinstating its Rarotonga-Los Angeles route.
A spokesperson for the airline told the NZ Herald the reason was because it wanted to focus on getting customers to, from and within New Zealand.
Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Cook Islands Government underwrote the airline's weekly flights between Rarotonga and Los Angeles.
According to local tourism operator Tata Crocombe who owns The Rarotongan beach resort, the move will be a “substantial” blow for the local tourism sector and Cook Islands’ economy because fewer Northern Hemisphere tourists will visit.
Peter Szawlowski on 27/06/2022
We have been coming to Raro for many years. Yes, we are disappointed about the cancellation of the direct flights from Los Angeles, because it adds about ten more hours of flight time. But on the other hand we remember the early years, our Air new Zealand Flight from Los Angeles had to stop in Papeete to re-fuel before continuing to Raro. We are returning in November, it will be our 15th time.