||This article appears to be written like an advertisement. (March 2014)|
|Founded||1947 (as Air Pacific)|
|Hubs||Nadi International Airport|
|Secondary hubs||Nausori International Airport|
|Airport lounge||Tabua Lounge|
|Headquarters||Nadi International Airport
|Key people||Nalin Patel (Chairman),
Stefan Pichler (CEO)
Fiji Airways, formerly Air Pacific, is the trading name of Air Pacific Limited, the flag carrier airline of Fiji. It operates international and domestic services to 10 countries and 15 cities around the Pacific, including Australia and New Zealand, North America and Hong Kong. It is also a partner with the frequent flyer programmes of Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, and Qantas.
In May 2012, the airline announced that it would reintroduce the name Fiji Airways, changing from Air Pacific, to reinforce its role as the national airline of Fiji. The airline ordered new Airbus A330-200 aircraft as part of the brand update. It was founded by Australian aviator Harold Gatty, who was given a ticker-tape parade in New York City in 1931 for his round-the-world flight with Wiley Post. The company started as Katafanga Estates as it operated to Gatty's island in Fiji with the same name.
Fiji Airways' first flight was on 1 September 1951, when a 7-seater De Havilland Dragon Rapide took off from the Fiji’s Nausori Airport to Drasa Airport near Lautoka, on the west coast of the main island.
Initially, Air Pacific tried to create international support for a multinational, shared, regional airline. This almost succeeded; by the early 1970s, seven Pacific island governments, some still under British rule at the time, held shares in Air Pacific, in addition to shares held by Qantas, TEAL (to become Air New Zealand) and the British Overseas Airways Corporation (to become British Airways). However, the regional airline idea lost support as other governments withdrew, leaving Fiji as the majority shareholders in the airline.
In the early 1980s, it pioneered the code-share concept with Qantas. Today, code-sharing is an accepted airline practice the world over. 25 January 1995 was another watershed date for Fiji’s airline when it launched what was believed to be a trail blazing concept of joint leasing of aircraft with the then Royal Tongan Airline. The concept came complete with the livery of the two airlines painted on each half of the Boeing 737-300 fuselage.
In 1983 it started flights to the USA. In 2007, Air Pacific acquired Sun Air, a domestic airline, renamed it Pacific Sun and began operations as Air Pacific's domestic and regional subsidiary. In June 2014, Pacific Sun was rebranded to Fiji Link.
In December 2009, Air Pacific commenced a twice weekly service to Hong Kong, which was increased to three services in January 2014. In July 2010 the new management team announced a new Suva-Auckland service.
In April 2011, Air Pacific announced that, due to delivery delays of almost four years by Boeing, it had cancelled its order for eight Boeing 787-9s, and in October 2011, announced that it had ordered three Airbus A330-200 from Airbus that are expected to be delivered in 2013. In February 2012, it was announced at the Singapore Airshow that it had ordered Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines for its new planes.
Today, the airline and its domestic/regional subsidiary, Fiji Link, operate over 400 flights a week to almost 15 cities in 10 countries around the world.
Ownership and structure
Fiji Airways is part of the Air Pacific Group (which includes the national airline, its wholly owned subsidiary Fiji Link, and a 38.75% stake in the Sofitel Fiji Resort & Spa on Denarau Island). The Air Pacific Group itself is owned by the Fijian government (51%), the Australian flag-carrier Qantas (46.32%), and Air New Zealand and the governments of Kiribati, Tonga, Nauru and Samoa each hold minor stakes.
With the exception of 2001, the airline was profitable from 1995 to 2004, but it suffered back-to-back record losses of FJ$5.2 million (US$2.8 million) for fiscal year 2008/2009 and FJ$65.3 million (US$35.3 million) for 2009/2010. The chairman Nalin Patel said that the 2009/2010 loss was the toughest financial year for the company, due to high fuel costs, the impact of new low cost carrier competition, lower fares and the global financial crisis. As a result, in early 2010, a new MD/CEO, Dave Pflieger was recruited to turn the airline around and restore it to profitability. Pflieger returned to the United States at the end of his contract with the airline in the third quarter of 2013. Stefan Pichler was selected as the airline's new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer and assumed his new role in September 2013.
The key trends for Fiji Airways, and the Pacific Airways Group, are shown below (as at year ending 31 March):
|Operating profit (before tax)(FJ$m)||−91.8||−3.7||16.5||18.0|
|Statutory profit after income tax (FJ$m)||−5.2||−65.3||24.8||11.4||14.1|
|Air Pacific Group|
|Operating profit (before tax)(FJ$m)||−78.5||−4.3||14.2||22.4|
|Statutory profit after income tax (FJ$m)||−58.9||25.3||10.7||17.8|
|Number of employees||800||n/a|
|Number of passengers (m)||1.1||1.2||1.2|
|Passenger load factor (%)||n/a|
|Number of aircraft (at year end)||6||6||7|
In May 2012, the airline announced that it would revert to its original name of Fiji Airways, with rebranding to coincide with the delivery of the A330 aircraft in 2013. Fiji Airways' new brandmark, a "Masi symbol that epitomises Fiji and enhances the new name of Fiji’s national carrier", was announced on August 17, 2012. The design was created by local Fijian Masi artist, Makereta Matemosi.
New schedule announced
From May 2014, Fiji Airways will offer twice–weekly direct flights between Suva and Sydney, operated by its B737-700 aircraft, and between Suva and Apia, operated by Fiji Links’s ATR 72 aircraft.
The direct services between Suva and Sydney will operate on Mondays and Friday, with a midday departure from Suva and an afternoon departure from Sydney. The new schedule means a change to the Suva-Auckland services, allowing for a late evening Suva-Auckland service on Mondays and Fridays, and a morning Auckland-Nadi service on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
The Suva-Apia services will operate late nights on Mondays and Fridays, while the return Apia-Suva flights will operate in the mornings of Tuesday and Saturday. This will now allow Apia passengers to connect on a Fiji Airways service to Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane or Nuku’alofa (Tonga) on the same day.
The airline will introduce a new direct weekly service between Nadi and Honiara as well as a third weekly service between Suva and Funafuti.
Fiji Airways has the following codeshare agreements
Fiji Airways has had a wider variety of aircraft compared to other Pacific airlines. Former aircraft include the Boeing 777 (on wet lease), Boeing 767, Boeing 747, De Havilland Dragon Rapide, De Havilland Heron, Douglas DC-3, BAC One-Eleven, Hawker Siddeley HS 748, and the McDonnell Douglas DC-10.
|ATR 42-300||4||27/10/1986 - 11/1993||Operated by Fiji Link|
|Boeing 737-200||1||23/11/1981 - 07/1990|
|Boeing 737-300||1||24/01/1995 - 02/06/1999|
|Boeing 737-500||1||11/06/1992 - 15/10/1999|
|Boeing 747-100||1||04/1988 - 15/11/1989|
|Boeing 747-200||8||03/1985 - 11/11/2001|
|Boeing 747-400||2||14/04/2003 - 18/11/2013||Final aircraft retired in November 2013.|
|Boeing 767-200||1||05/07/1990 - 15/12/1994|
|Boeing 767-300ER||1||16/09/1994 - 25/05/2012|
|Boeing 777-200ER||1||15/11/2012 - 10/12/2012||Wet Leased from EuroAtlantic Airways while Boeing 747s were undergoing a C check in Singapore.|
|McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30||1||21/09/1983 - 03/01/1985|
Fiji Airways offer two types of classes on their international services: Economy (Pacific Voyager) and Business (Tabua Class).
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- Creedy, Steve (March 19, 2013). "Air Pacific gets first Airbus A330 as part of its Fiji Airways rebranding". The Australian. Retrieved April 1, 2013.
- "Stefan Pichler leads Fiji Airways". 2013-09-06.
- "Air Pacific Announces FY2010/2011 Financial Results". 13 December 2011. Retrieved 6 March 2013.
- "Air Pacific Announces FY2010/2011 Financial Results". 13 December 2011. Retrieved 28 December 2012.
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- "Air Pacific Announces FY2012/2013 Financial Results". 23 July 2013. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- Gibson, Nevil (May 14, 2012). "Air Pacific reverts to original Fiji Airways name". National Business Review. Retrieved May 14, 2012.
- "Media - Fiji Airways Official Site". Fijiairways.com. Retrieved 2013-06-24.
- Air Pacific - Our Partner
- "Air Pacific selects versatile A330 for fleet renewal and growth" Airbus.com. October 25, 2011. .
- "Planespotters.net - Historic fleet". Retrieved 28 December 2012.
- "Airways' 5-year plan - Fiji Times Online". Retrieved 19 November 2013.
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