Kiwi twist for Air New Zealand's Koru Care flight

A very special Air New Zealand flight departed Christchurch this morning carrying 50 Koru Care kids off on a magical journey.
15 May 2021

The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, flown by Air New Zealand's Chief Pilot Captain David Morgan, took off towards the West Coast at 11:40am, looped up and around to pass over Taranaki and with a few extra turns along the way, then headed back to Christchurch to reveal flight NZ4376's (NZHERO) mystery flight path – a kiwi!

Gathering at the themed Little Heroes Headquarters at Christchurch Airport, the Koru Care kids started their morning with a pre-flight party, having faces painted, posing for superhero portraits and dancing at a silent disco. Cookie Time joined the fun with some sweet treats and to top it off, there was a surprise acoustic performance from Drax Project.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer, Greg Foran, who travelled on today's flight, says it's uplifting to offer a special charter flight for kids who aren't usually able to travel offshore due to medical conditions or family situations.

"Today's flight is a real heart warmer. Some of these children have never been on a plane before so we wanted them to experience the excitement of flying and our teams have pulled out all the stops to make today a magical experience for our Little Heroes."

The Little Heroes also met some of their real heroes at the pre-flight party today, including All Blacks Sam Cane and Joe Moody.

Koru Care Chairman Chris George says the support from Air New Zealand for the past 35 years has put smiles on faces and turned dreams into reality for thousands of Kiwi kids.

"It is a privilege to be part of such an amazing day with our little heroes and we are very thankful to our big heroes for making this happen."

Air New Zealand is offsetting all the carbon emissions from this Koru Care flight and the flights that flew the children to Christchurch, through its FlyNeutral programme.

About Koru Care
Originally started by a team of volunteers from Air New Zealand, Koru Care is now an official charity with four branches around New Zealand. Each of the four branches are independent and run by teams of dedicated volunteers. They each facilitate their own fundraising for the kids within their catchment area. More than 2,000 children with a range of illnesses and disabilities have flown with Air New Zealand, enabling them to see the world, make dreams come true, and create some amazing memories where they otherwise might not be able to.


Issued by Air New Zealand Communications.

Email:   │  Twitter: @AirNZMedia

Captain David Morgan with Lilly (12) and Annie (11)Air New Zealand Chief Pilot Captain David Morgan with Lilly (12) and Annie (11) at the pre-flight party in Christchurch.

About Star Alliance

The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognised by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award and Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SWISS, TAP Air Portugal, THAI, Turkish Airlines, and United. Overall, the Star Alliance network currently offers more than 19,000 daily flights to more than 1,250 airports in 195 countries. Further connecting flights are offered by Star Alliance Connecting Partner, Juneyao Airlines.

For more information please visit Air New Zealand and Star Alliance and/or follow Star Alliance on FacebookTwitter,  YoutubeLinkedIn or Instagram.

Star Alliance Press Office: Tel: +49 69 96375 183 or email: