Kiwi Tourism Icon Shotover Jet Celebrates Golden Anniversary

01 October 15

In November this year (2015) Queenstown jet boating company Shotover Jet will celebrate 50 years of operation and innovation, entertaining over three million passengers.

First started in 1965 with one tiny single-engined Hamilton 41 jet boat carrying seven passengers, Shotover Jet now has a fleet of seven twin-engine jet boats each carrying 14 passengers on an exciting 30-minute jet boat ride through the spectacular Shotover River canyons.

Throughout its half century of operation, Shotover Jet built a reputation as “the world’s most exciting jet boat ride”, and became the poster child for positioning Queenstown and New Zealand as an adventure destination in the 1970s and 1980s. Ngāi Tahu Tourism has owned Shotover Jet since 2001.

Ngāi Tahu Tourism Chief Executive Quinton Hall said the 50 year mark was a “significant” milestone worthy of celebration.

“Many people over the last five decades have contributed to the success of Shotover Jet, and it is fitting that we celebrate those efforts while looking forward to the next 50 years,” he said.

Shotover Jet is planning a range of activities in November to mark the golden anniversary, from official ceremonies and primary school trips to book launches and staff reunions.

Mr Hall said focusing on the needs of the customer had been a key factor in the success of Shotover Jet through the years.

“Every new element introduced to Shotover Jet over the decades was done to improve the amazing customer experience. Whether it was a hull that could perform a 360-degree Hamilton turn, tiered seats for better viewing or heated handrails for chilly mornings, the customer has always come first.”

To commemorate the anniversary, Shotover Jet is releasing a retro-style poster in keeping with early New Zealand Tourist and Publicity department promotional material.

Experience the Shotover Jet as an Optional Tour in your free time in Queenstown with Grand Pacific Tours

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