Air Tahiti Nui’s inaugural Tahitian Dreamliner touched down in Auckland yesterday on the cusp of the airline’s 20th birthday celebrations.
President of French Polynesia, Edouard Fritch welcomed a delegation of Pacific ministers at a formal ceremony at Auckland Airport yesterday, saying the inaugural flight from Tahiti to New Zealand is a stepping stone for generating better ties across the Pacific. ‘It’s a great day for our Polynesian links, and it means that for tomorrow there’s large possibility to make these links stronger. ‘I’m pleased that we can all share this moment as a stepping stone to increase more traffic into the Pacific region and grow the Coral Route.’
The 787-9 that arrived yesterday has been named Fakarava after an atoll in French Polynesia’s Tuamotu Islands which boasts a lagoon of similar shades to the aircraft’s livery. It features Air Tahiti Nui’s trademark tiare flower tattoo pattern, and inside boasts the new Moana premium economy cabin offering passengers more space, choice and comfort. Air Tahiti Nui flies three times a week between Auckland and Pape’ete, with connections on through Los Angeles to Paris. It is phasing out its current Airbus A340-300 fleet, which will be replaced by four Dreamliners. Air Tahiti Nui general manager Pacific Daniel Eggenberger began his position with the airline a mere week ago, and says the new aircraft is the best welcoming present.
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