New competition on Auckland – LA route as Delta touches down for first time

Delta Airlines touches down at Auckland International Airport and passengers and crew are welcomed on Monday morning. 30 October 2023 Photograph by Greg Bowker
Edited by Travel Weekly


    Earlier today Delta Air Lines celebrated its first ever services between Los Angeles and Auckland.

    Delta DL65 took off from Los Angeles International Airport with 91 per cent of its 339 seats occupied at 11:00 p.m. (28 October LA time) amidst a festive New Zealand themed gate event including a pōwhiri, a Māori welcoming ceremony, souvenirs and quintessential New Zealand snacks.

    DL65 arrived at Auckland International Airport at 7:55 a.m. marked by a pōwhiri and speeches from executives from Delta Air Lines, Auckland Airport, Tourism New Zealand and the US Consulate.

    Today’s arriving flight from Los Angeles was special because Captain Sean Onitsuka will retire after over 36 years with Delta when he returns to Los Angeles on Tuesday 31 October.

    Leaving the gate five minutes ahead of its scheduled 2:00 p.m. departure, DL64 took off for Los Angeles where departing passengers enjoyed informal speeches and ribbon cutting including representatives from Delta Air Lines and Auckland Airport and two of the Captains for DL64.

    The 12-hour flight will operate year-round: daily November-March and three times weekly April-October.

    On flights between Auckland and LAX between November-March, customers have a choice of three experiences: Delta One, Delta Comfort+ and Main Cabin.

    Starting from April 2024, Delta will operate the route with its flagship Airbus A350-900 aircraft, featuring Delta One suites, Delta Premium Select, Delta Comfort+, and Main Cabin services.

    Delta One customers can stretch out in a lie-flat seat and enjoy premium amenities like artisan-made Someone Somewhere amenity kits, plush bedding made from recycled materials, more beverage options before takeoff, new cocktail bites, and a chef-curated three-course meal.

    Customers flying in Delta Premium Select will have more space to relax and stretch out, with a wider seat, deeper recline, an adjustable footrest and leg rest on most flights, and an elevated dining experience, premium hand-crafted amenities, and dedicated service touchpoints to further elevate their journey.

    All Delta customers onboard have access to personal seat-back entertainment screens featuring a wealth of premium content on Delta Studio, in-seat power outlets for their devices, fast-streaming Wi-Fi available for purchase and free mobile messaging.

    Delta is the largest carrier in LAX globally, with more than 150 peak-day departures and more than 160,000 weekly seats, including domestic. Customers on Delta’s AKL-LAX flights can connect to nearly 60 cities in the U.S. and Latin America.

    Flight schedule for Auckland (AKL) – LOS ANGELES (LAX) **

    October 30, 2023, to March 31, 2024

    Flight

    Departs

    Arrives

    Operating Day

    Start Date

    DL64

    AKL at 2:00 p.m.

    LAX at 6:00 a.m.

    Daily

    30 October 2023

    DL65

    LAX at 11:00 p.m.

    AKL at 7:55 a.m.

    Daily

    28 October 2023

     

    April 2024 to October 2024

    Flight

    Departs

    Arrives

    Operating Day

    Start Date

    DL64

    AKL at 1:00 p.m.

    LAX at 6:00 a.m.

    Wed, Fri, Sun

    April 3, 2024

    DL65

    LAX at 10:05 p.m.

    AKL at 6:35 a.m.

    Mon, Wed, Fri

    April 1, 2024

     *The route will be operated with a different configuration of A350-900 till the end of March 2024, where customers have a choice of three experiences: Delta One, Delta Comfort+ and Main Cabin.

    **Flight schedule is subject to change.

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