In New Zealand the expression “airport” has a limited meaning, embracing only the runways, taxiways, and other ground areas on which aircraft move, together with the hangars, offices, passengers' accommodation, and other buildings. In order to enable aircraft to fly safely to and from these airports, a whole range of important “airways facilities” is provided by the State (Department of Civil Aviation). Operators pay “airport dues” in respect of the airport facilities and “airways dues” in respect of the airways facilities.
The purpose of the airways facilities is to enable aircraft to navigate safely and certainly, to know their positions at all times, to know of possible dangers, such as bad weather, and to receive and comply with instructions on how they should proceed in certain controlled areas. The main facilities are air-traffic control, navigational aids, radio communications, and meteorological services, as well as fire and rescue services.
Throughout New Zealand there are radio beacons (non-directional beacons or NDBs). A flight captain can tune in to one or more of these beacons and, knowing their location, can find his own position, even though he is flying above cloud or in darkness.