I was looking for flights from Tauranga to Dunedin yesterday, I searched for “Tauranga Airport” and came across www.TaurangaAirport.co.nz.
It is a hideous 1 page website that talked about car rental. Not what I was expecting at all!
I was suspicious so dug a little deeper using a “whois lookup” to find out who the owner was.
Sure enough, it’s not owned by the Tauranga Airport, but by a guy called Dave Burghardt:
Name : dave burghardt
Address : PO Box 2397
City : Tauranga
Post code : 3015
Country : NZ (NEW ZEALAND)
Phone : +64 7 5784210
E-mail : email@example.com
(If you are ever curious about who owns a domain name, use a whois lookup such as: www.dnc.org.nz)
I dug deeper still and found a complaint made by Auckland Airport against this guy in 2008 for owning Auckland-Airport.co.nz (note the dash: “-“) which pointed to yet another car rental business owned by Dave Burghardt. Oddly, the complaint fell through which means that the Domain Name Commissioner of New Zealand did not order that the ownership of the domain be transfered to Auckland International Airport Ltd.
Today, the domain name Auckland-Airport.co.nz is owned by Auckland International Airport Ltd therefore it looks like that Dave got the big bucks when they bought it from him.
So it got me thinking, “I wonder if Dave owned AucklandAirport.co.nz too?” (without the dash)
Using the “WayBack Machine“, I found the answer to my question, here’s what AucklandAirport.co.nz looked like in February 2008:
Yep, that’s Dave’s handiwork alright.
So it looks like Dave got paid the big bucks for selling Auckland-Airport.co.nz and AucklandAirport.co.nz to Auckland International Airport Limited!
I bet Dave is hoping for a repeat of that outcome by selling TaurangaAirport.co.nz and Tauranga-Airport.co.nz to Tauranga Airport Ltd, which is owned by the Tauranga City Council.
Half of me congratulates the guy for his entrepreneurial spirit, the other half of me curses him for being a dirty squatter who confuses people (because people are searching for information about Tauranga Airport and find his hideous website instead).
What do you think?
Another issue is – why are New Zealand airport’s so slow to get into the 21st century and get a website for themselves?
I still can’t find an official website for Tauranga Airport.