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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Flashback: Freedom Air

Flashback will hopefully be a regular addition to this blog as we look back at the airlines and aircraft which have flewn through Brisbane over the years.

Freedom Air of New Zealand was founded in 1995 and its aim was to provide low-cost flights accross the Tasman from its NZ base of Hamilton (HLZ). Freedom Air commenced flights to BNE on 16 December 1995 using a leased Boeing 757-28A from Britannia Airways (UK) rego G-BYAF. The Boeing 757 was replaced by a leased Boeing 737-3S1 N371TA from TACA (El Salvador) which visited on 27th April 1996. On 6th April 1997 Freedom Air's first owned aircraft Boeing 737-3M8 ZK-FDM operated the flight from HLZ to BNE. N371TA was returned to TACA.

Freedom Air B737-300 ZK-SJB landing at Gold Coast

By 2004 Freedom Air operated five Boeing 737-300s on flights from Brisbane to Hamilton (HLZ), Palmerston North (PMR) and Dunedin (DUD).

Bright coloured B737-300 ZK-SJC at BNE in 2004

In June 2005 the airline took delivery of their first Airbus A320 ZK-OJK cn2445. By March 2007 the Freedom Air fleet consisted of 12 Airbus A320s.

Freedom Air A320 ZK-OJK

Freedom Air A320 ZK-OJL in Warner Brothers Movie World scheme

On 30th March 2008 Freedom Air ceased all operations and most of the fleet of A320s was intergrated into the Air New Zealand fleet. Their brightly coloured aircraft will be sadly missed.