Welcoming the inaugural Capital Express service, Wellington Deputy Mayor Justin Lester, who also holds the Wellington International Airport portfolio, said the direct flight to Canberra would provide the fastest link from Wellington to Singapore.
“This new service will better connect Wellington to Australia, Asia and links into Europe through one of the world’s biggest airline hubs, Singapore. It will also provide an additional 110,000 seats each year and boost cargo capacity for our region’s exporters - bringing an estimated $44 million a year in economic benefit to New Zealand,” Cr Lester said.
Wellington will also benefit from the regional promotional work being done by Singapore Airlines, the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency, Wellington-based tourist attractions and travel agents in Canberra, Wellington and Singapore.
Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said: “This new service is generating a lot of interest and focus on Wellington which is great news for the region, our education institutes and our tourism industry.”
Also present at today’s welcome was Australian Capital Territory First Minister Andrew Barr who co-signed a Sister City agreement between Canberra and Wellington in July.
“The Sister City agreement and the new Capital Express service is about Wellington and Canberra forging stronger cultural, economic, environmental and political ties,” Mayor Wade-Brown said.
The Capital Express landed in Wellington just after 3pm and is scheduled to depart at 8pm. During that time a group of 120 travel agents and media were taken on a short 'get to know' Wellington excursion taking in attractions like Te Papa, Weta Workshop, the Cable Car, Botanical Gardens, and Zest Food Tours.