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General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

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General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

We are getting plenty of questions about this so here is the necessary info about the new airline in the Tonga forum. The new domestic airline for Tonga is called Realtonga, their website address is realtonga,to and bookings can be made by emailing booking@realtonga.to or you can call them on 00 676 23777. Alternative email addresses are ceo@realtonga.to or tania.tohi@paluaviation.to. The new airline is set to commence service on the 04th of March and the proposed flight schedule is already on the website. We hope you find the info useful. Thanks.

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Hamilton, New...
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1. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

As we will be travelling to Va' Vau in Sept . we are concerned about the " new " plane that will be servicing

from Tongatapu to Vava'u . On NZ news the plane " MA 60" Aircraft that is to come into service is reputability unsafe having had more crashes than any other aircraft . Is there any other air service that

flys from Tongatapu to Vava'u . appreciate any help with this query

Ballina, Australia
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2. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

Hi Phil, no, no other service. The flight is spectacular, just relax and enjoy it

Washington
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3. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

The current schedule shows several aircraft, not sure which one is the MA 60- perhaps the queen air?

http://www.realtonga.to/flight_schedule.html

Melbourne, Australia
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4. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

I have just got back from a ten day trip to Tonga, flying on RTA between the islands. I have to say that I have safety concerns over the planes themselves (although I'm not a aeroplane expert) and heard various stories from others that the planes' safety is somewhat lacking. On some occasions I observed the pilot himself conducting a safety check of the plane before flying. Also we found that the scheduled times for the planes we had previously been given did not correspond to reality and so it is definitely worthwhile to check plane times the day before you fly to see if there have been any adjustments. The punctuality is OK, the planes usually left a little while after their scheduled departure time, but were not very late on arriving.

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

Tonga changed the planes in August 2014. MA60 is not operating anymore and the new planes from Australia are safe. I was in Vava'u and I must say it is one of the nicest island I have ever been to. People are so nice and friendly and treat you as family. Whale swimming is just breathtaking. no words for this. I had the same concerns but did some research and talked to locals. The flights are now safe (if they have not been before, there are some stories from other countries which seem not to be true)...so if you ever have a chance to visit this paradise, do not hesitate because of the flight. they did change it and it is not MA60 anymore. I felt very safe in the plane.

Kona
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6. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

Not true, Olivia. The MA60 is in current and ongoing use for flights to Vava'u.

There has been a change, though, in that the government of New Zealand has dropped their travel advisory that cited concerns about the plane's safety. That doesn't magically make them safe, but it's true there haven't been a lot of recent MA60 accidents.

Eaubonne, France
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7. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

I got a VERY BAD experience using realtonga air :

on a flight (last august 2015) beetween tongatapu and vava'u, my luggage wasoverweighted, so I had to pay an extra fee

this is OK, I understand and agree this rule

but when I arrived to Vava'u, half of my luggage was missing !

explanation (afaI could get this explanation in Vava'u) : no room enough in the plane....

why, as they got my money for my extra luggage, didn't they put it il the plane ?

why didn't they even notice it to me, as I was departing ?

I was very upset, because my photo gear was in this missing luggage ; the goal of my trip was photographiing whales in Vava'u, and this company, realtonga air, made me miss the goal of my trip !!!

2 days later, my luggage came in Vava'u, but the 2 days of lost photographiing were unrecoverable !

as I spent of big amount of money, coming to Vava'u from France, this deeply affected the goal of my trip !

at least, they could have notice to me they wouldn't be able to take all my luggage : I would have choosen the luggage containing my photo gear !

Auckland
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8. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

Hi folks - any issues recently for RealTonga?

I haven't seen anything in the media but am worried with all the bad reports coming from tourists...

What are the chances of connecting a 1:20pm landing on Air NZ (on a Friday) to a 2:30pm departure on RealTonga to Ha'Apai?

Would it help if I only took carry-on luggage so there's no issue with waiting for checked luggage to make it out in time?

I understand the timetables aren't realistic and flights constantly change timing and may be cancelled without notice.

Importantly, is there any link up with international flights so that the RealTonga flight allows Air NZ passengers to connect to the Ha'Apai flight smoothly? Or at least an allowance is made for checked in luggage to be transferred to the domestic flight?

Cheers for any advice - tough destination to get clear information on...

A

Buchholz in der...
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9. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

We had very poor experiences with REALTonga in October 2015.

Having booked a flight to Vava´u and back the flight was cancelled due to serious weather conditions. Although we filled out a Ticket Refund Application and promised the refund in about four weeks nothing happened. Two mails were not even answered and we are still waiting for the money.

Does anyone have an idea how we could best proceed ?

Any suggestion is welcome.

Kona
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10. Re: General info on the new domestic airline for Tonga

elelastco99, sorry you had to have such a frustrating experience (shared with MANY people who have suffered from RealTonga's incompetence).

You could try writing to the Tonga Tourism Authority and ask for their assistance:

info@tourism-tonga.com

And it wouldn't hurt to send a letter via email to the Prime Minister's office, with copies to:

- his personal assistant, Sosiua P. Pohiva, spooipohiva@yahoo.com

- the press office: pressoffice@pmo.gov.to

There are phone numbers you can call as well, but from overseas that's not a very cost-effective approach.

Good luck!

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