Some people trying to fly into Auckland and leave the city faced delays after a balloon, initially believed to be a drone, floated over the airways of Auckland Airport.

Around 6pm on Sunday a member of Auckland Airport ground staff alerted police and air navigation service provider, Airways, to a drone sighting.

At 6.02pm Airways was made aware of the sighting and ceased departures and arrivals.

"During that time we held departures and two aircraft in the air, two were arriving they were in a holding pattern for six minutes," an Airways spokeswoman said.


Police arrived on the scene and confirmed the item was a balloon, not a drone, and flights resumed as usual by 6.08pm.

Some other flights were delayed but the spokeswoman could not say which or how many.

Rachel Morton took to social media to share her experience with the delay from her flight to Auckland.

"My flight (and apparently others) had to circle at Auckland Airport before landing because a pilot from another flight reported seeing a drone... turns out it was a balloon."