Summer's biggest airline visitor is due to arrive tomorrow - a Singapore Airlines A380 - as new the new season's flight schedules kick in.
The superjumbo will boost services between Auckland and Singapore to three a day, in partnership with Air New Zealand.
The extra flight with the 450-seat double decker will boost capacity by 40 per cent on the route over summer and starts just after approval was granted for another five years of the joint venture between the two airlines.
Singapore Airlines' general manager for New Zealand, Simon Turcotte, said the airlines had just finished four years of co-ordinating commercial activities.
In that time capacity between Auckland and Singapore had increased, a new service linking Wellington and Singapore had been started and a new aircraft type for Christchurch flights announced.
From January the airline will use a new A350-900 to fly year around between Singapore and the South Island gateway.
Turcotte said there was a growing number of premium seats in response to strong demand.
''We're very strong in the corporate market but there is a very strong high-end leisure market, cruising is very popular up to Europe so that premium demand is strong there,'' he said.
The small and medium size business market was also strong out of New Zealand.
''The SME market is huge in New Zealand and that's why we're keen on tapping into it.''
Under the Air New Zealand-Singapore Airlines agreement the airlines' sell each others' product as if they are one entity with fares the same.
''The goal is to make the purchasing experience as seamless as possible for the customer so they can't tell the difference,'' said Turcotte who is leaving New Zealand at the beginning of December for a new job within the Singapore Airlines Group.
Turcotte is being seconded to Nok Scoot in Bangkok after three years here.
He will take up the role of head of commercial at the joint venture between Singapore Airlines and Thai airline Nok Air.
He will be replaced here by Keng Hon (Kenny) Teo.
Teo has been with Singapore Airlines for 14 years, and has most recently been based in Kuala Lumpur as its general manager of Malaysia.
Turcotte said the extension of the alliance with Air New Zealand gave the airlines greater certainty.
''Obviously we're working with air New Zealand to grow to Singapore and beyond so watch this space.''
Singapore's four-class superjumbo (including Suites) will be the second seen in Auckland during summer. Emirates flies an A380 year round between Auckland and Dubai.
Tomorrow's big arrival is part of the change to the northern winter airline schedule.
The changes coincide with the end of daylight saving in the Northern Hemisphere and include the end of the Air New Zealand-Virgin Australia alliance across the Tasman.
From today both airlines have gone their separate ways in fierce competition with each other.