Air New Zealand Electric Plane to Opearte Wellington-Marlborough

Air New Zealand has selected Wellington (WLG) and Marlborough (BHE) Airports as the ports for its upcoming all-electric aircraft operations.

Last year, Air New Zealand announced the purchase of its first all-electric ALIA CTOL aircraft from Beta Technologies. It will initially use the Beta ALIA for a cargo-only service in partnership with NZ Post.

The all-electric ALIA CTOL from Beta Technologies
The all-electric ALIA CTOL from Beta Technologies

This service will commence in 2026, operating between Wellington and Marlborough Airports. Both airports will therefore play a pivotal role in introducing lower-emissions aircraft to New Zealand.

Wellington Airport Chief Executive Officer Matt Clarke said:

“Partnering with Air New Zealand to host the commercial demonstrator is a giant leap for sustainable aviation, providing the basis for all airports to prepare for the next generation of aircraft technology. Our team put their heart and soul into the hosting bid and that same energy will now be focussed on getting this service off the ground.”

Wellington Airport will be the home base for Air New Zealand’s first next-generation aircraft. Meanwhile, Marlborough Airport will also install the required charging infrastructure to power the aircraft for the return journey.

This commercial demonstrator aims to lay the foundations for the New Zealand aviation system to introduce lower-emission aircraft. It forms part of the airline’s Next Gen Aircraft mission, which aims to accelerate the development of aircraft technologies.

Air New Zealand's Chief Sustainability Officer, Kiri Hannifin said:

“We are incredibly grateful to both Wellington and Marlborough airports for being so willing to take on a leadership role in supporting Air New Zealand to establish next-generation aircraft capability in our business.

“Their involvement is critical in supporting the infrastructure required to fly next-generation aircraft, and they'll help lead the way in supporting airports across Aotearoa to make the changes needed for us to fly larger lower-emissions aircraft on our domestic network from 2030.”

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