Prior to COVID-19, $112 million a day was spent by domestic and international visitors in New Zealand, tourism generated 21% of New Zealand's export earnings and provided employment for 14.4% of New Zealanders.

The pandemic has had a devasting impact on tourism businesses who have been faced with the sudden loss of visitors and income. All businesses have had to make significant changes to ensure their survival, Air New Zealand included.

What hasn't changed is the industry's focus on sustainability. The New Zealand Tourism Futures Taskforce has been set up to lead the thinking on the future of tourism in New Zealand, and create a more sustainable, productive and inclusive tourism system post COVID-19.

At Air New Zealand, our goal to grow the economic value of tourism to New Zealand while enhancing natural and cultural resources, and providing outstanding experiences for visitors and New Zealanders, remains relevant.

We recognise that genuine sustainable development outcomes are key to ensuring the long-term success of the industry. New Zealand boasts some of the most stunning landscapes and natural scenery in the world and it is vitally important we continue to preserve and protect our natural environment. It is also crucial tourism benefits our communities.

Find out more in the Supporting New Zealand through Sustainable Tourism section of our 2020 Sustainability Report.

Tiaki Promise

Seven key New Zealand organisations, including Air New Zealand, have joined forces to conceive and develop Tiaki - Care for New Zealand, an initiative that actively encourages international and domestic travellers to experience New Zealand in a way that keeps everyone safe, protects our environment, respects our culture and protects the country for future generations. Under the banner of Tiaki – Care for New Zealand the group launched the Tiaki Promise and invited all regions and tourism organisations to share the Tiaki Promise with their visitors. The Tiaki Promise outlines what travellers can do to care for New Zealand, travel safely and act as guardians of our land, waterways and oceans. Read more about the Tiaki Promise.

Sharing Māori culture

We recognise Māori culture as a foundation of New Zealand's heritage and a key element of Air New Zealand's culture. As the national carrier, we are in a unique position to embrace and share Māori culture with New Zealanders and overseas visitors. We regularly use Te Reo to greet our customers and Air New Zealanders are growing the range of words and phrases they use to express their pride in the language.

The 'Tohu Reo' pin, which acknowledges the wearer as a fluent Te Reo speaker, is worn by speakers across the country and continues to be a highlight of our support for Māori language. The Tohu Reo received a Nga Aho Purple pin at the New Zealand Best Design awards 2017. The 150 Māori Ambassadors across the organisation provide support and encouragement to share, market and promote Māori culture and language across the airline. New cabin crew intakes across our short haul, mid haul, and long haul fleets, along with family, celebrate their training graduation ceremony on the Te Manuakanuka o Hoturoa marae.

We have increased content promoting Māori culture, language, and success across information distribution channels such as the Kia Ora magazine, Inflight Entertainment, and domestic route screens.