The world's largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380, has returned to Aotearoa for the first time for regular service since the start of the pandemic.
The Emirates flight from Dubai touched down in Auckland on Friday morning and is the longest route on their network.
The flight takes about 16 hours, travelling over 14,000 kilometres, and is slightly shorter than Air New Zealand's Auckland to New York route.
This summer is the first one since 2020 without Covid-19 restrictions in New Zealand, allowing international travel and visitors to return.
Emirates NZ regional manager Chris Lethbridge said the return of the large aircraft shows international travellers are ready to return to New Zealand.
“It’s a very special moment for us to see the A380 return to New Zealand, and its arrival marks a significant milestone in New Zealand’s return to normality."
Auckland Airport says they expect passenger numbers over summer to be at about 70% of what they were in summer 2019.