Air New Zealand has a unique network from its main hub at Auckland International Airport (AKL). It connects to most of the Pacific Rim.
A key part of the airline’s strategy and network is connecting countries in the South Pacific. One unique route is Air New Zealand’s flights to Niue Hannan International Airport (IUE).
‘The Rock’ of the Pacific
Niue is located 2,400km (1491 miles) northeast of New Zealand, between Samoa, Tonga, and the Cook Islands. With a small population of under 2,000, Niueans are automatically citizens of New Zealand as part of the ‘Realm of New Zealand,’ which also encompasses Tokelau and the Cook Islands.
Being one of the world’s largest coral islands, the island has a distinctive look, with large limestone cliffs overlooking the ocean, creating a plateau 60 meters (200ft) above sea level. Another portion is a coastal terrace sloping down towards the ocean. A coral reef surrounds the island and is popular for tourists interested in game fishing and diving.
Hannan International Airport
Air New Zealand is the sole carrier operating to Niue, operating one weekly flight from Auckland (AKL), operated by the Airbus A320neo. Previously the airline operated its A320 on the route.
When traveling to Niue from New Zealand, the flight crosses the date line, so travelers will arrive the day prior. Flight duration is 3hr30min to Niue and 3hr45min when returning to Auckland. Flights operate from New Zealand on Saturdays, with the below schedule:
- NZ936 departs on Saturdays from Auckland International Airport (AKL) at 09:10, arriving at Niue Hannan International Airport (IUE) at 12:40 (arriving the day prior, Friday)
- NZ937 departs on Fridays from Niue Hannan International Airport (IUE) at 13:50, arriving at Auckland International Airport (AKL) at 17:30 (arriving the following day, Saturday)
The airline increases its frequency to two flights per week between June 24 to October 28, departing from New Zealand on a Tuesday and returning from Niue on a Monday.
Air New Zealand offers its ‘seats to suit’ product on the flight, enabling passengers to pick from a ‘seat only’ fare to its ‘works deluxe,’ which includes two checked bags, meals, drinks, and a ‘neighbor free guarantee.’
New Zealand’s assistance in building an airport
In 1964, the Niue Assembly requested that the New Zealand Government assist in building the nation’s airport. The New Zealand Army constructed the airport, with the assistance of Niueans, building a 1,600m (5,400ft) runway. The airport received its first commercial flight in July 1971, initially served by Polynesian Airlines from Fiji. The runway was upgraded in 1981 to accommodate the Boeing 737, with Air New Zealand introducing its direct connection.
Between 1990 to 1992, the airport was the base of Niue Airlines, which is no longer in operation.
The airport is named after Ralph Hanan, the former New Zealand Minister of Island Affairs.
Sources: Niue Island
Air New Zealand
- IATA/ICAO Code:
- Airline Type:
- Full Service Carrier
- Auckland Airport, Christchurch Airport, Wellington Airport
- Year Founded:
- Star Alliance
- Greg Foran
- New Zealand