Flag carrier Air New Zealand has proposed up to 385 additional cabin crew job cuts by December amid the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

The decision has been taken as the long-haul international flying continues to be affected due to Covid-19.

According to the airline, declining passenger traffic on North American routes has resulted in the decrease of return flights to Los Angeles to three a week from daily, reported Reuters. It has also taken steps to convert San Francisco flights to cargo only.

If materialised, the latest reductions would take the carrier’s Covid-19 related job losses to around 37% of its workforce, which is higher than Qantas Airways’ nearly 30% of job cuts.

Prior to the latest cabin crew cuts, the airline had revealed 4,000 job losses.

An Air New Zealand spokeswoman was quoted by the news agency as saying: “In the foreseeable future, we have around 385 more widebody cabin crew in the business than we have work for.

“Any decision we make will be made in consultation with our people and the unions, with redundancies as the last resort.”

Meanwhile, New Zealand trade union E tū has urged the carrier to stop outsourcing work as part of an agreement with a cabin crew hire company in Shanghai.

Last week, the airline announced that its Boeing 777 fleet will be grounded at least until September 2021.

Late last month, Air New Zealand reported that it posted its first loss of NZD87m ($57.23m) in 18 years due to the impact of Covid-19.