Air New Zealand claims Auckland Airport 'overspending' on redevelopments could cause $40 ticket price hike in next decade

Air New Zealand is seeking an urgent review into what it calls Auckland Airport's "overspending".    

To pay for its multi-billion-dollar redevelopment plan, the airport is passing on the cost to airlines that Air New Zealand warns will add $40 to passengers' tickets in the next decade.  

Airport redevelopments include pick-up and drop-off spaces which will create an easier and more seamless journey.   

The $3.9 billion-dollar redevelopment will also combine the domestic and international terminals.    

Auckland Airport chief executive Carrie Hurihanganui said the domestic terminal is more than 60 years old.  

"It has done its job and adapted over the years but it is becoming end of life."   

To bring it back to life, Auckland Airport is gradually increasing the amount it charges airlines to land.   

Initially, the increases will be $6.75 per passenger but will soon rise to $10.25 per passenger - and then eventually to $15.45 by 2027.   

Airlines will then pass that cost on to passengers.   

Air New Zealand chief executive Greg Foran said that's "about a $40 increase per passenger".   

The Commerce Commission is reviewing Auckland Airport's proposed pricing for airlines out to 2027 but what really concerns Air New Zealand is that, over the next decade, a total of $6.7 billion of capital investment is forecast.    

Auckland Airport is at pains to point out the forecast is not set in stone and believes airline concerns are overblown.   

Air New Zealand is now seeking an urgent review of the law that governs Auckland Airport.   

However, Commerce Minister Andrew Bayly said he currently doesn't support that.  

"We're waiting for the outcome of the Commerce Commission inquiry."  

The review could be the final hurdle for Auckland Airport before its billion-dollar vision can fully take flight.