After a near 12 month absence, the Kiwi flag carrier has resumed flying the NZ197/198 rotation
Some 11 months and 3 weeks after ceasing Hobart’s first international route since the 1990s, one of Air New Zealand’s six-strong fleet of Airbus A320neos, ZK-NHD touched down at 11:04am with around 140 passengers on board. The resumption of services has not been smooth however, as -NHD has been grounded at Hobart since it’s arrival yesterday, with NZ198 back to Auckland initially delayed, then pushed back to Friday, and now cancelled, with the aircraft scheduled to return as NZ6012 early Saturday afternoon. The aircraft has been unable to leave, as of July 9th due to faulty primary and back-up oil pressure sensors on the number 2 engine.
Air New Zealand launched the route on the 22nd of April 2021, with the all black liveried A321neo ZK-NNA having the honour of operating the first flight. Most services were operated by ANZ’s fleet of international configured A320-200s, however these have been progressively retired, with only one remaining as of July 2022. The route continued in operation for a time after the ending of the Trans-Tasman bubble, but was eventually ceased in July 2021.