Jetstar pulls out of New Zealand regional market

Jetstar has announced it is axing its regional services in New Zealand at the end of November.

The routes being cancelled are between Auckland and Nelson, Napier, New Plymouth and Palmerston North, as well as Nelson to Wellington.

Customers booked on regional services after November 30 will be offered options including a full refund.

Jetstar's services between Aotearoa's main centres, as well as its international routes, are not affected.

The regional services the airline is dumping use Bombardier Q300 turboprop aircraft and were launched in December 2015. They currently fly 130 return services a week, during peak season.

Jetstar CEO Gareth Evans said the decision came about due to an increase in costs and a drop in demand.

"We understand there will be disappointment in regional centres at today's announcement," he said.

"The New Zealand regional market is facing some headwinds, with softer demand and higher fuel costs and we don't see the outlook changing any time soon.

"We have given it a real go. However, despite four years of hard work - including becoming the most on-time of the two major regional airlines and having high customer satisfaction - our regional network continues to be loss-making."

Jetstar will continue to operate its domestic jet services between Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Queenstown, as well as its Trans-Tasman and pacific services.

The airline says all 70 affected staff will be offered other positions within Jetstar or across the wider Qantas group.