Air New Zealand revolutionizes the in-flight safety video

I can’t count the number of dreary in-flight safety videos I have sat through, waiting for takeoff. They all seem to have one thing in common – a stultifying lack of creativity; perhaps a direct result of having a captive audience. Before the advent of the ubiquitous video, at least you could amuse yourself watching some poor soul attempt to look dignified whilst wrangling with an inflatable life jacket, but these days, air passengers are subjected to giant onscreen faces chirpily wagging enormous fingers at you, saying “Smoking is not allowed on any Delta flight” – seriously, I can’t be the only one who is a little scared of the uber-sassy lady in theΒ Delta video.

So it is such a joy to see that Air New Zealand have decided to tackle the problem of getting passengers to pay attention during in-flight safety videos. Last year, they raised the bar with their Hobbit-themed video, complete with cameo appearance by Peter Jackson.

Now, they have done it again, this time with a rollicking adventure sequence starring the fabulous Bear Grylls. Enjoy!

How much fun was that? And be honest, when was the last time you watched an in-flight safety video because it was fun; not because you had to? πŸ™‚

About ailsapm

Hi there! I’m Ailsa Prideaux-Mooney. I’ve lived in many places, and travelled to many more. I had a lot of fun getting there and being there, wherever there happened to be at the time. I climbed a castle wall in Czesky Krumlov, abseiled down cliffs to go caving in the west of Ireland, slept on the beach in Paros, got chased by a swarm of bees in Vourvourou (ok that wasn’t fun, but it was exciting), learned flower arranging in Tokyo, found myself in the middle of a riot in Seoul, learned to snowboard in Salzburg, got lost in a labyrinth in Budapest and had my ice cream stolen by a gull in Cornwall. And I’m just getting started. If you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read so far, I’d love you to follow my travelogue - - and remember, anyone who tries to tell you it’s a small world hasn’t tried to see it all.
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110 Responses to Air New Zealand revolutionizes the in-flight safety video

  1. I LOVE it! They’ve done a few great ones in the past, I think one with the All Blacks (NZ Rugby team). Way to make a safety video interesting!
    On a related note, I totally feel you on being bored by safety videos. I’ve actually memorized the American Airlines one because I use them for all my work travel. I’m working on memorizing the Spanish version now. Gotta do something to entertain myself while the damn thing is playing!

  2. Ricky Leong says:

    I have to say, Air Canada’s in-flight safety video is a slick piece of work, far superior to some others I’ve seen. Nothing like this NZ one, of course, but it has very good production value.

    • ailsapm says:

      True, the production values are great, Ricky, but it’s not exactly bursting with innovation. The approach and content is exactly the same as almost every other safety video out there. The thing I like about the Air NZ approach is that they’re re-inventing the concept rather than making just another slick update to what has been, up until now, something akin to a dreary corporate video πŸ™‚

  3. alphathread says:

    Hi Ailsa, Air NZ is always in the process of reinventing itself in order to keep things fresh, while delivering a Kiwi spin on things. As a primary promotional billboard for the country, ANZ needs to do some quirky things in an on-going battle for traveller’s minds against pretty formidable competition. Part of this is to attempt create a memorable experience. I haven’t seen this video on a flight yet, but it is the most recent in a string of safety videos with a difference that goes back some ten years, beginning with one featuring US fitness guru Richard Simmons dressed in yellow singlet and tight gym shorts. Some have had a cringe factor not always appreciated by many Kiwis, but they get people talking – just like here! The area where the Bear Grylls video was shot is stunningly beautiful, and the Routeburn Track is one of New Zealand’s “Great Walks”. Cheers, Chris G (NZ)

    • ailsapm says:

      Oh dear, that Richard Simmons video sounds more than a little scary! πŸ™‚ The Routeburn Track looks amazing, Chris, I hope to see it for myself someday. xxx Ailsa

  4. Audrey Chin says:

    This is so refreshing. I’ve passed it on. Entirely different from every other safety video I’ve seen, and I fly at least once a month!

    • ailsapm says:

      Refreshing is the perfect word, Audrey, I love that they have put so much creative energy into finding a new and engaging way to disseminate information.

  5. Ailsa – Now, that was fun. Thanks for posting.

  6. Oh yeah, I forgot about the Richard Simmons one! There was also the body paint one. That raised a few eyebrows…

  7. djdfr says:

    The gasp when the oxygen masks dropped, that would probably be my reaction also.

  8. pommepal says:

    I love the Kiwis there are not many of you but you certainly have got your safety act together. Thanks for passing on the videos Ailsa

  9. lensaddiction says:

    We Kiwis have a very irreverent sense of humour and like to take the piss whenever possible. Its also amusing to play “spot the famous kiwi” in these videos as well πŸ™‚ My fave is the bodypaint one tho!

  10. JK Bevill - Lost Creek Publishing says:

    The Bear Essentials Is Wonderfully Entertaining!

  11. Just about to fly with them so looking forward to it. The rugby one was great!

  12. Our European carriers have got an awful lot to learn from these!

  13. adinparadise says:

    Amazing video. There’s no way i wouldn’t watch this. Very entertaining indeed. πŸ˜€

  14. bulldog says:

    I love the video… that will hold anyone’s attention…

  15. Reblogged this on restlesswanderer61 and commented:
    The is a must see for any Lord of the Rings, Hobbit fans! I can’t believe I just sat through a safety video! If only I lived in the Shire… (minus the threat of invasions, rogue wizards and motley trolls). Okay, maybe I’d rather live in Rivendell. Enjoy the video and remember to put your tray in the upright position. March 19th is the release date for The Hobbit DVD!

  16. Tina Schell says:

    Ailsa, thanks so much for posting these, they are terrific. I love that ANZ is working to capture attention. NZ is one of our favorite trips ever – the friendliness and energy of the people is a big reason we loved it and the video is evidence of both!

  17. Reblogged this on the travelling travelator and commented:
    I loved this so much, I had to share. What happens when the Kiwi sense of humour grabs your attention for a serious reason. Why can’t we Brits get our act together for our own version? David Walliams, perhaps?

  18. Portable loo?? Lol!! πŸ˜€
    Love AirNZ! They are very creative πŸ™‚

  19. Marianne says:

    I saw the Hobbit one on my flight from Auckland to Melbourne with Air NZ, the week before last! Amazing!

  20. markd60 says:

    These are good, I’m forwarding them to our airport safety officer.

  21. ideflex says:

    The Hobbit-themed safety video is brilliant – I would be the passenger you hear laughing loudly behind you and guess what, we actually remember what the instructions are because it is so interesting! I can’t stand most of AirCanada’s propaganda, so dull and boring, everyone looks homogenous and the narrator’s voice makes passengers zone out and yawn – all you have to do is look around the cabin when it is on and you’ll see the effect it has, no one paying the least bit of attention.. pretty much like the response we get to most things in this frozen wasteland…

  22. grettafitzpatrick says:

    Reblogged this on Flying With Life and commented:
    Amazing in-flight video!! Best I have definitely seen!
    Now I want to fly with Air New Zealand!!

  23. I just love this! Nothing and noone can match their humour and creative minds! I loved the one for last year and then the Hobbit one and now this! GREAT. I’ll reblog!

  24. Reblogged this on Lagottocattleya and commented:
    This is just great! How can you not love New Zealanders?

  25. Pat . says:

    I hadn’t seen the latest one – that is really good. And Air NZ is one of the best airlines – despite some of the pilots nodding off occasionally…

  26. Amy says:

    Very cool! πŸ˜€ Thank you, Ailsa!

  27. I loved these. I would watch them again.

  28. dakota85 says:

    This is one of the many, many reasons (don’t tell my Kiwi boyfriend!) that I adore New Zealand: they never seem to notice the staid or old-fashioned limits the rest us put on conventions – like a boring in-flight announcement. Last year, they maximized tourism for the Rugby World Cup by bringing the All Blacks onto the plane (and sport/rugby-themed innuendos). Before that, Richard Simmons led the entire passenger deck in a safety ‘work-out’. Just brilliant!!

  29. Those were beyond amazing!!

  30. msdulce says:

    Air NZ is just the best! This is just one example of many little things they do to make the flight experience actually kinda fun. Thank you for gathering these up!

  31. rfljenksy says:

    Fantastic.. there was an airline in the past that did a naked briefing.. also innovative.. 2009.. guess what.. also new zealand. They were actually body painted but completely bare..not as fun as the more recent one but still new and different .. and their accents are just wonderful.

  32. Meg says:

    My friend is flying on air New Zealand today, I think she’ll get a kick out of the new video!

  33. George L. Verge says:

    Reblogged this on George L. Verge and commented:

  34. Fabulous … and why not?!?

  35. Hahaha love it ! Gotta love that Southern Hemisphere sense of humour.
    I remember being on a Virgin Airways flight from Melbourne to Adelaide – Australia around 10 years ago and the head cabin stewardess did the safety demonstration. There were a few awkward smiles going on amongst the other cabin crew also taking part as well as a few puzzled bemused glances.
    At the end of the demonstration the head steward announcing the demonstration states that she completely changed the sequence so the others had no idea what was going on – hence the smiles ! It was very funny !

    • ailsapm says:

      Virgin Airways are always a lot of fun. I was on a European flight and the captain came on over the speakers and said “If you look out the left window, you’ll see big white fluffy clouds. If you look out the right window, you’ll see the same. That’s all you’re going to see today folks, it’s cloudy out there.” πŸ™‚

  36. Jo Bryant says:

    we Kiwis like to have a bit of fun…this was one of my favourites

    Air New Zealand staff in bodypaint…oh yea

  37. loganbruin says:

    Many years ago I was on a flight from Melbourne to Aukland–don’t remember if it was ANZ or Quantas–and I had just seen the movie Sirens, with one of my fave actresses, Tara Fitzgerald. So guess who’s doing the safety video? Yup, I always pay attention on flights in that region now. ;o)

  38. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Air New Zealand safety videos – best ever! And I love the fact they constantly change them up too. It’s such a breath of fresh air – and I’m flying with them later in the year again πŸ˜€

  39. Love it! Also can’t wait to go to New Zealand πŸ™‚

  40. Lynne Ayers says:

    As passengers we really do need to pay attention to the safety features but it is hard when it’s the same yada yada. An attentdant told me that no matter everyone thinks they know it by heart, it is those that actually watch the video who react best if a situation arises. Yay Air NZ for making it fun and interesting as well as informative. Step it up AC.

  41. OMG!!!! Like I needed another reason to love New Zealand even more than I already do!!! Thanks for sharing these – they had me smiling!!!!

  42. Those are so much more interesting than the usual yawningly boring information films. I’d be happy to watch them more than once per flight! πŸ˜€

  43. rovingadobe says:

    Timely post for me as I just caught both these videos flying between Australia and Auckland over the past month!

  44. elinerilda says:

    This is brilliant! I wish more flight companies would follow their example.

  45. Yes! I had posted this on my twitter as well! Ended up watching this, the All Blacks one and the Richard Simmons one <– hilarious! Can't wait to see Bear!

    • ailsapm says:

      I went and did a search for them too, Glamourous Traveller, too much fun! I posted the Bear video in this post, did you get to see it? He’s hilarious.

  46. krudyard says:

    I’ve seen the hobbit one four times and cringe everytime the ‘wizard’ says ‘bared’ instead of ‘beard’.

  47. Pamela says:

    Oh dear! I had to leave the library as I was laughing so much, even without the sound on.
    Love the Kiwis, love their sense of humour. Surely N.Z. must be a most wonderful place to live.

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