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The Longest Routes From Auckland Airport This Month

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The Longest Routes From Auckland Airport This Month

The Longest Routes From Auckland Airport This Month. In terms of long-haul routes from Auckland Airport, Doha and New York take the lead. Auckland’s strategic location as New Zealand’s primary international gateway means it serves as a departure point for some exceptionally lengthy flights.

Auckland Role in Global Connectivity

Auckland connects New Zealand to a wide range of international destinations, making it a crucial hub for the country. Despite challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, New Zealand has reopened its borders, leading to increased activity at the Auckland Airport. However, recent issues, such as floods and lengthy customs wait times, have presented some challenges.

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Doha to Auckland: The Longest Route

Qatar Airways, based in Doha, currently holds the title for the longest route originating from Auckland. The airline operates a daily service connecting the Middle East to New Zealand, covering a total distance of 9,011 miles. This route is served by Qatar Airways’ state-of-the-art Airbus A350-1000.

New York and Dubai: Not Far Behind

While flights between New Zealand and the United States West Coast have always been prevalent, Air New Zealand recently introduced a flagship service to New York JFK, spanning 8,813 miles. This route, serviced by the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, initially operated three times a week and now faces competition from Qantas with its AKL to JFK service using the same aircraft variant since June.

Emirates, with its A380 aircraft, operates flights to two destinations in New Zealand: Auckland and Christchurch. The Auckland route, covering 8,810 miles, is a direct flight and connects easily to various destinations at the Emirati hub.

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Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth: The Top Five

Chicago O’Hare and Dallas/Fort Worth rank fourth and fifth, with Air New Zealand flying to Chicago and American Airlines connecting to Texas. These flights span distances of 8,180 and 7,439 miles, respectively.

Auckland to Houston: Close Behind

Air New Zealand’s Boeing 777-300ER serves a daily route to Houston from Auckland, covering a distance of 7,414 miles. Given Auckland’s status as Air New Zealand’s home base, it’s no surprise that Vancouver, the only connection to Canada, comes in seventh place, spanning 7,043 miles and offering 21 services to British Columbia for October.

San Francisco and Los Angeles

San Francisco claims eighth place, with both Air New Zealand and United Airlines operating Boeing 777 aircraft on this route, amassing a total of 38 services this month. This makes it the most frequently serviced route in the top ten in terms of the number of flights.

Los Angeles follows closely behind, with Air New Zealand operating the route with the 777-300ER for the 6,504-mile journey. Delta Air Lines is set to commence its Auckland service starting October 28th, operating year-round. United Airlines will also resume its route on October 30th.

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Beijing Rounds Out the Top Ten

In the tenth position is Air China’s route to Beijing, covering a distance of 6,462 miles, just slightly shorter than the route to Los Angeles. Auckland will see 18 return flights to the Chinese capital this month, further solidifying its role as a key international hub.

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Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways Plans to Offer Complimentary Starlink Internet Details Yet to Be Disclosed

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Qatar Airways Plans to Offer Complimentary Starlink Internet Details Yet to Be Disclosed

Qatar Airways Plans to Offer Complimentary Starlink Internet Details Yet to Be Disclosed. In a recent development, Qatar Airways, a long-standing user of Inmarsat-now-Viasat Global Xpress (GX) Ka-band satellite-based inflight connectivity service, has indicated its intention to offer SpaceX’s Starlink Aviation onboard Internet to its passengers on a complimentary basis. This offering will be accessible to passengers with a simple “one-click” process.

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Rollout on Specific Aircraft and Routes

According to an official press release from Qatar Airways, the low-latency In-Flight Connectivity (IFC) service will be introduced on “specific aircraft and routes.” The airline has also mentioned that they are currently in the pre-launch phase of the rollout strategy in collaboration with Starlink. SpaceX Vice President of Starlink Commercial Sales, Jonathan Hofeller, has expressed that Starlink is “set to support the entire Qatar Airways fleet.”

This news emerged following the APEX/IFSA Global EXPO event in Long Beach, where Qatar Airways Group’s Chief Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker, was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award. During this event, Starlink executives met with airline representatives in a nearby hotel.

Changing Landscape in In-Flight Connectivity

The Qatar Airways-Starlink collaboration signifies a shift in the in-flight connectivity landscape. Traditional GEO satellites are being challenged by Low Earth Orbit (LEO) constellations like SpaceX’s Starlink. For example, Flexjet has announced plans to replace the Viasat hardware on some of its aircraft with Starlink.

Viasat acquisition of Inmarsat, coupled with these changes, has led to some Inmarsat value-added resellers reevaluating their positions. SITA, a service provider to Qatar Airways, has already disclosed its intention to exit the cabin connectivity market by January 2025.

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Seeking Clarity from Qatar Airways

Runway Girl Network reached out to Qatar Airways to seek clarification on several points. They inquired about:

  • Qatar Airways plan regarding the replacement of Inmarsat (now Viasat) GX inflight connectivity hardware with Starlink.
  • Whether Starlink will be deployed across Qatar Airways’ entire fleet.
  • Commencement dates for supplemental type certifications and Starlink installations.
  • Which aircraft type will be the first to receive the new hardware.
  • The impact of SITA’s decision to cease being a GX value-added reseller on Qatar Airways’ decision to select Starlink.
  • Qatar Airways’ plans for continuing to roll out Inmarsat GX on its 787-9s.

Qatar Airways Response

In response to these queries, a Qatar Airways spokesperson stated via email that they would keep Runway Girl Network updated on any future operational developments. In a follow-up exchange, when further clarity on the deal was sought, the spokesperson requested the removal of a specific phrase from their press release.

Implications and Future Plans

In the absence of comprehensive details, it seems logical for Qatar Airways to consider introducing Starlink initially on its 787-8s. This fleet has seen recent in-seat In-Flight Entertainment (IFE) upgrades but still lacks true broadband connectivity.

Once Starlink is operational on Qatar Airways aircraft, passengers can anticipate complimentary access to ultra-fast Wi-Fi speeds of up up to 350 Mbps, which can be used for various Internet-based services including video streaming, gaming, web browsing, and more. In contrast, the airline presently charges $10 for inflight access to its ‘Super Wi-Fi.

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Read Also: Qatar Airways Elevates In-Flight Connectivity with Starlink Partnership

Conclusion

Qatar Airways, in its press release, also proudly asserts its position as “the largest airline to collaborate with Starlink.” Other notable Starlink customers include Part 135 operator JSX, Hawaiian Airlines (launch delayed until early next year), airBaltic, and ZIPAIR.

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