Bay of Islands AirportKerikeri Airport
About the airports
Bay of Islands (Kerikeri) Airport
The airport is located west of Kerikeri and is a CAA Certified Airfield.
Bay of Islands Airport was originally a grass aerodrome built by the New Zealand government in the early 1930s or earlier. In 1938 the local council (Bay of Islands County) was made administrator of the airport which was then only used for private and club flying. Occasionally the Airforce used it with short range biplanes as a stopover on patrols or exercises. During World War II, it was taken over by the Defence Department and used for Airforce training and became the coastal patrol base - using small aircraft from the grass field. After the war, the airfield was run by the government and again used only for private and club flying.
Commercial air services to Bay of Islands (using DH Dominies, Lockheed Electras and Douglas DC3s) flew to Kaikohe airfield - about 30 kms. southwest of Kerikeri. Around 1970, Fokker F27 aircraft replaced DC3s on local services and service to Kaikohe stopped as the airfield proved to be unsuited for them. There was then no service to the area and F27's went to Kaitaia in the far north (90 minutes drive) and Bay of Islands County Council started investigations into upgrading Kerikeri for F27 use. After 18 months, estimates of cost came out too high and no further action was taken.
Around 1972, tourist airline, Mt Cook Airlines proposed to link the tourist resorts of the Bay of Islands, Rotorua and Queenstown by a daily service each way. They leased Kerikeri Airfield and built a sealed runway with a short cross grass runway and had night lighting installed. The runway was built to F27 and Hawker HS 748 aircraft standards (the HS 748 being used by Mt Cook). The tourist service failed within the year due to lack of patronage and Mt Cook started the Kerikeri - Auckland service, first with the Twin Otter and then the BN Islander and finally the Chieftain. The service was not well patronised, and by 1991, it was mainly about one PA 31 per day.
In 1992, due to local tourist operators' belief that Mt Cook Airlines was inhibiting tourism growth, the government terminated the airport lease and transferred the airport to the control of the Far North District Council. The Council then transferred it to a wholly owned company, Northern Airports Corporation which in turn was amalgamated into Far North Holdings Ltd.
At the date of transfer, Eagle Airways (Air New Zealand Link) took over the route and provided four flights a day from Kerikeri to Auckland with the Embraer Bandeirante aircraft (13 seats).
The Air New Zealand Link service to Auckland International Airport has grown into the current three Beech 1900 (19 seats) and two Bombardier Dash 8 Q300 (50 seats) aircraft services daily. Air Nelson operates the Dash 8s.
There is also a service to Whangarei and Auckland North Shore Airports operating two or three return flights every weekday by Salt Air using Cessna aircraft.
Charter flights coming in, use Fokker F27s, ATR72s, BAe Jetstreams, Metroliners and executive jets. However, the present weight restriction of 22,500kgs placed on the runway restricts flights using larger aircraft such as C130s and Gulf Stream Vs.
Private aircraft and hangars, a flying club, Bay of Islands Coastguard, scenic operators (including helicopters) and agriculture aircraft are all based on the airport. The airport has a secondary apron for charter operations with direct non-terminal access.
Terminal facilities were originally built for four flights daily by Bandeirante aircraft and the service outgrew the terminal. Extensions to the departures area were completed in 2007 with the arrivals area upgraded in March 2008. Car rental agencies have moved into a purpose-built space adjoining the terminal building. The airport is also used by private flights between Australia and New Zealand for clearing customs and refuelling, etc.
>>> Passenger numbers (10KB PDF file)
There is a growing demand for a facility where meetings can be held between flights within the vicinity of the Airport - a convenient location so that visitors flying in will not need to arrange transport to and from town.
Our Meeting Room adjoins the lounge and can be locked for privacy. It has a board table and eight chairs - more chairs can be provided if required. Power supply and a whiteboard are also available.
Rental: Half day - $ 50.00 plus GST
Full day - $ 100.00 plus GST
For bookings, please use our contact form or telephone: 09 407 6133.
Kaitaia Airport is located north of Kaitaia and has two Air New Zealand Link flights each weekday (one per day at weekends) operated by Beech 1900 aircraft. It has a longer runway than Bay of Islands Airport. This airport is managed and operated by Far North Holdings Ltd for the Far North District Council.
Kaikohe Airport, located south of the town and having a grass runway, is solely used for recreational purposes. Current users include a Gliding Club, Model Aircraft Club and a Skydiving operation.