Like many airlines, Air New Zealand once flew that workhorse of the skies, the Boeing 767. It wasn’t the quietest or most fuel-efficient plane ever built, but the aircraft type remained a firm favorite with passengers worldwide. Air New Zealand only retired their last 767s a few years ago. What’s surprising is how many of their former 767s are now flying for other airlines.
Air New Zealand operated the Boeing 767 for 32 years
Between September 1985 and March 2017, Air New Zealand variously operated 22 Boeing 767s. All up, the airline flew ten Boeing 767-200s and 12 Boeing 767-300s. Over those 32 years, the Boeing 767 was a staple on Air New Zealand’s long-haul flights around the Pacific. The plane was superseded by the arrival of the 787-9 Dreamliners. The last Air New Zealand Boeing 767 flight was March 31, 2017, operating NZ108 from Sydney to Auckland.
“The Boeing 767 aircraft has been a stalwart at Air New Zealand,” said Captain David Morgan at the time. Stalwart or not, the aging aircraft could not compete against the Dreamliner and Air New Zealand’s other wide-bodied aircraft, the Boeing 777.
Most former Air New Zealand 767s found new homes
The first Air New Zealand Boeing 767 to arrive, ZK-NBB, now flies cargo for Indian airline Star Air as OY-SRF. ZK-NBC started service with Air New Zealand in September 1986, left in May 2004, and is now also with Star Air as OY-SRG.
The third Boeing 767-200 at Air New Zealand, ZK-NBD, is now operated by Atlas Air on behalf of DHL. Its current registration is N655GT. ZK-NBE left Air New Zealand in May 1993. It flew for multiple airlines afterward, finally ending up at Air Seychelles as S7-SEZ. The plane was retired from service in 2011.
ZK-NBH started flying for Air New Zealand in 1989. It stayed with them until 1995. The plane ended up with Air Canada as C-FUCL before been retired in 2006. It is now stored at Phillips Army Airfield in Maryland. ZK-NBF also left the Air New Zealand fleet in 1995 and went to Jet Midwest Group via Air Canada in 2012. Its current registration is N753JM.
Amazon Prime Air likes former Air New Zealand Boeing 767s
The first of the Boeing 767-300s to come to Air New Zealand was ZK-NCE. It entered the fleet in 1991 and exited in 2002. Since then, the plane has had a storied life, flying for multiple carriers. Air Transport International now flies it as N331AZ on behalf of Amazon Prime Air. ZK-NCF arrived at Air New Zealand in 1992 and left in 2006. It last flew for Air Jamaica as N767WA before getting withdrawn from service in October 2018.
One of Air New Zealand’s last Boeing 767-200s, ZK-NBI, has also ended up at Star Air as OY-SRK. ZK-NCG, a 767-300, which Air New Zealand got in 1993 and kept until 2017, is now also flying under Amazon Prime Air colors as N367AZ.
G-BNYS, a Boeing 767-200, which Air New Zealand briefly flew on a lease from Brittania Airways in 1994, wound up at Air Seychelles as S7-EXL before getting handed back to its lessor in 2013. ZK-NCF, an extended range 767-300, has also wound up at Amazon Prime Air after 12 years of flying for Air New Zealand.
Icelandair also picks up former Air New Zealand 767s
ZK-NCI stayed at Air New Zealand until March 2017. The Boeing 767-300ER is now at Amazon Prime Air. Another extended range 767-300, ZK-NCJ, started at Air New Zealand in 1995 and finished up in 2016. That’s also now with Amazon Prime Air as N389AZ. ZK-NCK went to Icelandair in 2016 is now registered as TF-ISP. Icelandair was also the destination for another 767-300ER. ZK-NCL now flies in chillier climes as TF-ISW.
ZK-NBJ, a Boeing 767-200, flew for Air New Zealand on an on and off basis for 13 years, often spending time at other airlines. It was retired in 1997. After flying for Air New Zealand for a couple of years in the late 1990s, ZK-NCM has gone on to multiple other airlines and ended up at iAero Airways at N827RC.
ZK-NBA, an extended range Boeing 767-200, started at Air New Zealand in 1985 and stayed there for over 10 years. It is now at Star Air and registered as OY-SRN. SP-LPA was briefly at Air New Zealand over 1999/2000, on lease from LOT Polish Airlines. The Boeing 767-300ER is now with Aeronexus Corporation as ZS-NEX.
The final two Air New Zealand 767s, both 767-300ERS, are ZK-NCN and ZK-NCO. Both went o Icelandair. ZK-NCN is now flying as TF-ISO, and ZK-NCO is TF-ISN.
What’s the takeout from this? There are a lot of former Air New Zealand Boeing 767s in the skies. Is that due to Air New Zealand’s formidable maintenance and aircraft upkeep practices? Is it the fact the Boeing just built a really reliable aircraft? Probably a fair bit of both.