Call for NAC air hostesses to dust off uniforms (+photos)

Air hostesses who flew in the National Airways Corporation's timeless old DC3 passenger aircraft are being told to dust off their uniforms and get back in the air.

The Classic Flyers Aviation Museum in Tauranga wants to hear from hostesses who may have flown in the old DC3s when they were operated by the national carrier, NAC.

If they still had their uniforms and could fit into them, even better, museum chief executive officer Andrew Gormlie said.

The museum was planning a series of sightseeing flights over Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty in summer to coincide with the cruise ship season.

Mr Gormlie said the flights would include an hour-long flight over White Island, the active volcano in the Bay of Plenty, and was expected to be a big hit with tourists.

The DC3 was based at Ardmore airfield in Auckland and part of the flight schedule could also include return flights from Auckland to Tauranga.

He said since the museum put the word out for retired air hostesses, it had found two, including one who last flew 30 years ago and still had her uniform.

He said the first flight was planned for early November when the first of the summer cruise ships arrived in Tauranga.

The DC3 the museum was one of two still operating in New Zealand. It was painted in Royal New Zealand Air Force colours but for several years was painted in the dark green colours of the D-Day landing aircraft with white stripes on the fuselage and wings.
NAC began in 1947 with World War 2 DC3s and for 30 years carried millions of passengers until it merged with Air New Zealand in 1978.

Mr Gormlie said getting former air hostesses back in the air would be a lot of fun for them and the passengers.

He said DC3s had a huge nostalgic interest in New Zealand but had to be utilised and supported by the public to keep them in the air.

"They were the backbone of transportation in New Zealand for 30 years," he said.

- NZPA

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