New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union: SIA's Wellington-Canberra load factor averaged 60%

28 January, 2018

New Zealand Taxpayers' Union reported (26-Jan-2018) Singapore Airlines' (SIA) Wellington-Canberra route averaged a passenger load factor of 60%, compared to an average of nearly 80% for all flights in and out of Australia, according to the group. Taxpayers' Union economist Joe Ascroft commentated that it is "no surprise that Singapore had to move their flight route to Melbourne" as earning a profit with these load factors "was never realistic", even after subsidies provided by the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency. Mr Ascroft said he believes that switching the route to Melbourne "is unlikely to be successful either", noting that Jetstar was forced to discontinue their Wellington-Melbourne route in 2016 "because it was unprofitable to compete with Air New Zealand and Qantas". The Taxpayers' Union is calling on the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency to cancel its subsidy deal with Singapore Airlines. [more - original PR]