Emirates postpones Christchurch route restart date, refunds offered

Emirates has postponed the restart of its services between Christchurch to Dubai, which were planned to kick off in December.

The route will now restart at some point in 2023 and customers who have bought tickets on cancelled flights are being offered various options, including refunds.

An Emirates spokesperson told Newshub the services have been deferred due to "ongoing operational constraints and resourcing pressures".

"This will unfortunately impact the launch of our highly anticipated Premium Economy cabin on the route, and we hope to be able to bring it to market as soon as conditions allow us to do so," the spokesperson said.

"Christchurch is an important and strategic route, and we are keen to restart our services to the city as soon as it is operationally feasible," the spokesperson continued.

"All customers who have booked their flights to or from Christchurch are being offered alternative flight arrangements to ensure minimal interruption to their travel plans, and we aim to make it a smooth and seamless process."

Emirates is offering to fly impacted travellers from Christchurch to Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane with Qantas before continuing from there with the Dubai-based airline to their final destination.

There is also the option of being rerouted through Auckland using Jetstar.

Customers are encouraged to get in touch with the airline or their travel agent to discuss a rerouting option or refund.

The news comes days after Air New Zealand announced it was reducing its schedule over the next six months, resulting in 1.5 percent fewer seats with around 100,000 customers impacted.