Wellington: An Air New Zealand flight was grounded Wednesday after it emerged that a group of passengers had been exposed to the Norovirus, which could cause vomiting, diarrhoea, and abdominal pain, a media report said.

Passengers of the Mount Cook flight NZ5374 were held onboard at the Christchurch Airport after some passengers reported feeling unwell, The New Zealand Herald reported. Later, health authorities learnt that the group had been exposed to the Norovirus.

The flight "was delayed this morning while advice was sought from Canterbury regional public health authorities after reports of unwell passengers onboard", a spokesperson for Air New Zealand was quoted as saying.

"The unwell passengers were part of a tour party of 40 - some of whom indicated to our cabin crew that the group had been exposed to Norovirus," the spokesperson added.

She said the unwell passengers were told that they could not be accepted for further travel until they had recovered.