Air­port am­bas­sadors wanted

Hastings Leader - - News -

The Hawke’s Bay Air­port is on the search for lo­cals with a big wel­com­ing smile and a pas­sion for all things Hawke’s Bay to be­come air­port am­bas­sadors.

Hawke’s Bay Air­port chief ex­ec­u­tive Stu­art Ainslie says the air­port is get­ting busier by the day with more than 700,000 pas­sen­gers fly­ing in and out of the air­port an­nu­ally, with fore­casted pas­sen­ger num­bers set to reach one mil­lion by 2025.

With the in­crease in do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors, the air­port is keen to in­tro­duce a team of vol­un­tary air­port am­bas­sadors, an ini­tia­tive that is hugely suc­cess­ful in air­ports around the world.

“There’s noth­ing like get­ting a warm wel­come by a lo­cal when you ar­rive some­where new. They can pro­vide in­for­ma­tion on ev­ery­thing within the air­port such as bag­gage claim, lost prop­erty and ve­hi­cle hire lo­ca­tions as well as giv­ing them some tips about what to see and do while in our stun­ning re­gion,” Stu­art says.

The idea has been en­dorsed by Hast­ings District coun­cil­lor and the city’s first am­bas­sador Henare O’Keefe, who is in a sim­i­lar role for Hast­ings and his beloved Flaxmere.

“I love my am­bas­sador role, I get to meet some amaz­ing peo­ple — both lo­cals and vis­i­tors — and it’s awe­some to be able to put a smile on some­one’s face and make them feel at ease.

“The air­port am­bas­sador’s role will be fan­tas­tic and in­cred­i­bly re­ward­ing. Many peo­ple that land at Hawke’s Bay Air­port are do­ing so for the first time and as they say — first im­pres­sions al­ways count.

“If you’ve got a big smile, you say ‘kia ora or gid­day’ and make it just that lit­tle bit eas­ier for a vis­i­tor, then it not only makes a huge im­pres­sion upon them, but they will also tell their friends and fam­ily to visit the Bay too,” Henare says.

Stu­art says there has al­ready been in­ter­est in the vol­un­tary am­bas­sador po­si­tions. He says air­port staff will en­sure the role isn’t too oner­ous and the main func­tion will be to an­swer questions about the fa­cil­i­ties and ser­vices in and around the ter­mi­nal and Hawke’s Bay in gen­eral.

Vol­un­teers can work four hour shifts a day, they will be pro­vided with am­bas­sador uni­forms, re­fresh­ments and fuel vouch­ers to get them to and from the air­port.

Stu­art hopes to have some am­bas­sadors start­ing in time for the open­ing of the new ar­rivals hall on Jan­uary 15.

To be­come an air­port am­bas­sador email [email protected]­bay-air­ or phone 06 834 0742 for more in­for­ma­tion.

Henare O’Keefe en­dorses the idea of an air­port am­bas­sador.

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