- Origin Pacific Airways
Origin Pacific Airways IATA
Founded 1996 Commenced operations April 1997 Ceased operations 15 September 2006 Hubs Nelson Airport Destinations See Below Headquarters Nelson, New Zealand
Origin Pacific Airways was an airline based in Nelson in New Zealand operating freight services. Until 10 August 2006, the airline also operated scheduled and charter passenger services. Its main base was at Nelson Airport (NSN). It ceased all operations on 15 September 2006
Origin Pacific Airways was established in 1996 and started operations in April 1997. The airline was owned by Robert Inglis (managing director) and Nicki Smith (50%), Mike Pero (25%) and a group of Wellington investors (25%).
Origin operated code-share flights on behalf of Jetconnect (a subsidiary of Qantas Airways) from mid 2001 to early 2004. When the code-share agreement was cancelled the airline lost around 60% of its business. Routes served on behalf of Jetconnect included Rotorua and Queenstown. Origin operated ATR-72-212 and Dash 8-100 and 300 aircraft on those routes. Jetconnect took over these routes using their own Boeing 737 aircraft.
The loss of the code-share with Jetconnect was a major blow to the airline. They lost access to Qantas' international network. Hence Origin had to rely solely on the domestic market, of which Air New Zealand held the majority. Jetconnect also acquired their own aircraft to provide service on routes previously operated by Origin, which meant Origin was also in competition with Jetconnect. The code-share loss thus resulted in the scaling back of jobs and aircraft.
Competition with Air New Zealand
Origin Pacific found it difficult to survive in the domestic market where it competed with Air New Zealand. Air New Zealand had a international network which allowed it to feed its domestic network with international travelers. They also received a New Zealand government financial bail-out in 2002 when they went into financial difficulties. This meant that Air New Zealand continued to compete with Origin. According to the airline's management, this was a major factor contributing to their financial problems.
The airline ceased passenger operations on 10 August 2006. The closure of passenger services was mainly due to airports and Inland Revenue demanding money. However at the time the airline ceased passenger operations, Origin's passenger numbers were up more than usual.
It then ceased freight operations effective 14 September 2006.
The airline had collapsed due to due to large inherited debts. Origin Pacific was unable to find investors to inject additional capital.
The story of Origin Pacific is well documented in a short-run book of 12 ever copies called Down To Earth - The Story of Origin Pacific Airways.
Prior to the suspension of domestic passenger services, the airline (as at January 2005) operated services to the following scheduled destinations:-
- Dunedin (discontinued 15 January 2005)
- New Plymouth
- Palmerston North
The airline had also previously operated services to the following destinations:-
During its operation Origin Pacific operated the following aircraft:
- 4 BAe Jetstream 31
- 3 BAe Jetstream 32
- 5 BAe Jetstream 41
- 1 Cessna 421
- 2 ATR-72-212
- 3 DHC-8-100
- 2 DHC-8-300
- 1 Fairchild-Swearingen Metroliner III
- 3 Fairchild-Swearingen Metroliner 23
Airlines of New Zealand Scheduled passenger servicesAir Chathams · Air New Zealand (including NAC, Air Nelson, Eagle Airways, Mount Cook Airline and Zeal320) · Air2there · Aspiring Air · FLY MY SKY · Golden Bay Air · Great Barrier Airlines · Jetstar Airways · Mainland Air · Mountain Air · Pacific Blue Airlines · Salt Air · Sounds Air · Stewart Island Flights · Sunair · Jetconnect (Qantas) Cargo, charter and scenic Former airlines
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