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Air New Zealand planes parked on the tarmac at Auckland airport. File photo: AP

Air New Zealand says sorry for leaving behind bags on maiden New York to Auckland flight to take on more fuel

  • Around 40 passengers’ luggage was offloaded to make room for extra fuel on the 17-hour flight
  • The airline’s COO said the company is in touch with customers to reunite them with their bags
New Zealand

Air New Zealand has apologised after around 40 passengers’ bags were left behind during the airline’s first flight from New York to Auckland.

The bags were offloaded to make room for extra fuel on the 17-hour flight, The Independent reported.

The September 17 flight from JFK to New Zealand’s largest city travelled around 14,231km, according to FlightAware data, making it the fourth longest route in the world.

The chief operating officer for Air New Zealand, Alex Marren, told The Independent: “Unfortunately, given additional fuel requirements due to adverse weather, some customer bags were unable to be loaded in New York.

“We are in touch with customers to update them and reunite them with their bags. We’re sorry for any inconvenience this has caused. We are getting them to New Zealand as soon as possible.”

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Air New Zealand did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment made outside normal working hours.

Insider’s Taylor Rains flew business class on Air New Zealand’s maiden flight from JFK to Auckland. She reported that the flight was delayed by about two hours due to air-traffic control issues. There were also adverse weather conditions while flying over Mexico, she added.

Despite these delays, the flight still landed at 8.30am (local time), only 50 minutes behind schedule.

In June 2023, Australian airline Qantas is due to launch a competing route between the country and New Zealand.

Read the original article on Business Insider