Air New Zealand operates multiple all-female crewed flights for Women in Aviation Week

Air New Zealand operated several flights with all female crews during this year's Women in Aviation Week (WOAW), which runs March 6 to March 12.

The week is described as a global aviation awareness initiative to encourage and inspire more women and girls to pursue careers in aviation.

It's held annually in March to mark the anniversary of Raymonde Laroche becoming the first woman to receive a pilot's licence on March 8, 1910. 

On Wednesday - which also marked International Women's Day - Air NZ flights NZ515 from Auckland to Christchurch and NZ526 from Christchurch to Auckland were operated exclusively with women staff.

Among them were Captain Rachael Bartlett and First Officer Penny Armstrong piloting the A320 domestic aircraft.

Also on Wednesday, Captain Sarah McIlroy, First Officer Alison Whyte and Second Officer Louise Maihi took the helm of a Dreamliner 787 on flight NZ946 from Auckland to Rarotonga.

Captain Nina Connell and First Officer Monique Sims also flew an A320 on flight NZ101 from Auckland to Sydney on the same day.

"We're incredibly proud to have such amazing wāhine here at Air NZ, including our incredible team of female pilots, engineers and crew," said Air NZ General Manager Pilots Captain Christine Ody.

According to the International Society of Women Airline Pilots women make up 5 percent of airline pilots worldwide. Air NZ however claims 8 percent of its pilots are female.

Additionally, the airline's chief people officer Nikki Dines said around 18 percent of its engineering team and 8 percent of its maintenance crews are women.

"We have a range of initiatives that support and promote women in aviation, including participation in mentoring and development programmes, partnerships with organisations that focus on promoting diversity and inclusion, and employee networks focused on supporting and developing women across all parts of the business," said Dines.

During WOAW, aviation organisations and businesses around the world hold events, activities and outreach programs such as fly-ins, airport tours and career seminars to introduce women and girls to aviation career opportunities.