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Continental Airlines Announces New Service From Houston Hub to Auckland, New Zealand

Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) today announced another major step in development of its Houston hub with plans to begin nonstop Boeing 787 flights to Auckland, New Zealand on Nov. 16, 2011 (subject to government approval).

Auckland will be added to the 63 international destinations that Continental currently serves nonstop from Houston, and will become the 26th destination in Continental*s Pacific network. Continental serves more destinations in the Pacific region than any other U.S. carrier.

Continental will be one of just three airlines flying nonstop between North America and New Zealand. At approximately 7,400 miles, the new route will be the longest from Continental*s Houston hub. Continental plans to operate the route on a daily basis, with five-times-weekly service during certain periods in the first year of operation.

On May 3, Continental announced that it has agreed to merge with United Airlines in a merger of equals to create the world*s leading airline. The success of the Houston-Auckland route will be enhanced by the additional traffic flows through Houston that are expected to result from the merger.

Continental is the first airline in the world to formally announce specific, initial route plans for its Boeing 787 Dreamliner fleet. The airline has firm orders for 25 Dreamliners. The 787 is a new-technology composite aircraft with lower operating costs, better environmental performance and an improved cabin environment for customer comfort. Deliveries to Continental are expected to begin in August 2011. The aircraft will have 228 seats, including 36 of Continental*s new flat-bed BusinessFirst seats for the best rest on long-distance flights.

Today Continental also unveiled a modernized and expanded customer check-in facility in Terminal C at its Houston hub at Bush Intercontinental Airport.

**Our new route to Auckland and our new and upgraded facilities at IAH are tangible examples of the emphasis we place on continuing to expand Houston*s role in domestic and international aviation,** said Jeff Smisek, Continental*s chairman, president and CEO. **This hub has ongoing growth opportunities because it has a strategic location, space for expansion, support from the community and an excellent team of Continental co-workers who deliver our clean, safe and reliable service.**

**This new flight between Houston and Auckland shows how the Dreamliner will create new opportunities to connect global markets that currently are not being served,** said Mario Diaz, Houston Airport System director of aviation. **As the largest hub for Continental, George Bush Intercontinental Airport is honored to be selected as the launch pad for the Continental Boeing 787.**

The Houston-Auckland route will benefit from connecting traffic at both ends. Continental*s Houston hub will draw passengers from throughout North America. In addition, Houston will be a very competitive connecting hub for travelers on itineraries between Europe and Auckland.

Auckland is home to Air New Zealand, one of the 27 carriers including Continental which are members of Star Alliance. Air New Zealand and its regional airline partners offer service to 20 destinations in New Zealand and seven in Australia, including Adelaide, Brisbane, Cairns, Coolangatta (Gold Coast), Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.

11.06.2010. 13:37

 

 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 

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