Air New Zealand to announce new ULH route at “Where to next” conference [update] Chicago is route

Following up this topic Air New Zealand hint ULH flight to New York or Chicago

Air New Zealand this Wednesday (Tuesday US/Europe) is rumoured to be announcing a new ULH service at its “where to next” conference. Chigaco is frontunner city previously CEO Luxon had mentioned plans to fly there, Chicago is somewhat 13,200km away and it would be one of the longest routes in the world.

Chicago is the most likley new destination

This would make sense as Chicago is a big hub of Air New Zealand star alliance partner United Airways and it would allow for many connections around the USA. The route would be operated with either the 787-9 (North American heavy premium configuration) or the 777-200ER. Another likely candidate is New York some 14,185 km away which would be the 4th longest flight in the world only 10km shorter then 3rd place Auckland - Dubai opearted by Emairtes. This though is pushing aircraft range right to the limit the 787-9 only able to fly this distance by changing configuration and cargo/logistical limits. Air New Zealand might have to wait for next generation aircraft such as the 777-8X and A350-900ULR before opening up routes to the US east coast which may also be bought up in the conference. Possibly giving clues to what will go on to replace the 777-200ER in the early 2020’s.

Air New Zealand 787-9

Air New Zealand currently flies to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston and Vancouver in North America and this would be its 5th route.

Where do you think Air New Zealand will fly?

  • New York
  • Chicago
  • Other (say in comments)

0 voters

What aircraft should replace Air New Zealand 777-200ER?

  • 777-8X
  • A350-900ULR

0 voters

I’ll update post once it has been announced see if you guys guessed right :)


Update 2:

Photo credit

Jet photos Lachlan Gatland

ZK-NZE | Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner | Air New Zealand | Lachlan Gatland | JetPhotos


I’m putting a virtual cookie on Denver :)


They said that they wouldn’t open a Eastern Seaboard Route until they get one of the new ULH aircraft. So that wipes New York off the list.

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Look at Perth - London longer 787-9 route wouldn’t say its completely out of the picture.

Yeah, but at the same time like. They said they wouldn’t.

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It would be nice to see Denver 1. Because I’m from Colorado, and 2. DEN is a pretty busy airport with connections to many cities through the US. Only downside is that it’s only a major hub for United, Southwest, and Frontier, leaving out Delta or American where as ORD has a healthy mix of most of US carriers.


Air New Zealand is partnered with United via Star Alliance. One of United’s main hubs in Denver (Yes, Chicago is as well)


I gotta go with @Moosehead08 and @Balloonchaser here. Denver would be a really nice route to see. I could also see them going to one of the following, Dallas, Seattle, Phoenix, and maybe even like Salt Lake City, or even Kansas City or St. Louis

The world is a big place


Excellent choice, New Zealand and Australia are in the perfect positions for ULH flights. They should be able to fly to New York but coming back is pushing it for the 777-8.

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I’m not sure about Kansas or St. Louis though, they are not big enough hubs. Those other options could very well be possible.

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Lol I said those cities because I knew that Des Moines was way out of the picture


I think Newark or Boston

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As I said before, they said no. But in my opinion, i’d love a New York route, along with boston.

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I think it’ll definitely be Chicago.
Star Alliance hub, plus ORD has hinted about a “big announcement” coming this week.

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Just sayin, MCI and STL would never happen, the STL and MCI markets could not support that, yeah I think DFW could definitely happen and maybe SEA and PHX.


I think it is gonna be ORD.

It’s going to be a Star Alliance hub not on the west coast so either ORD or EWR.

All of their current destinations in North America as per the article are star alliance hubs. (SFO, LAX, IAH) - UA and (YVR) - AC


Way too far, this has also been said above by 2 or 3 other members. ORD on the other hand might be the winner winner chicken dinner in this whole Riggimaroll

EDIT: Also have to remember that KDEN is also a Star Alliance hub.🧐🤔

Yea it’s not gonna be DEN, or MCI, or STL

Very ambitious but it’ll never happen. At least not right now…

ORD or DEN are the likely cadidates.