Air New Zealand Teleports People By Shipping Container?
Imagine walking off a busy street in Chicago, into a box and instantly into the Southern Alps of New Zealand. When the door closes behind you, so you are surrounded by a different world… After a breathtaking tour of this jewel of the Southern Hemisphere, you step back into reality and into another box to taste the cuisine and feel the culture New Zealand has to offer.
No, this isn’t a futuristic foray into teleportation – instead it was a marketing stunt offered by Air New Zealand using repurposed shipping containers to entice Chicago residents to fly south and explore their country. Let’s look at what the airline did late last year to promote its new routes out of Chicago O’Hare airport.
In order to promote its three flights a week out of Chicago, Air New Zealand set up three shipping containers under the Tribune Tower in the city that were designed to encourage Chicagoans to book a holiday to their country.
The ‘teleport’ container had screens on all the walls, giving the visitor an immersive experience by being surrounded by imagery of scenery and sights in New Zealand. Surrounded by the scenes, one gets the impression of actually being somewhere you’re actually not!
In the next container was a mockup of the Economy Skycouch that is available for an extra fee to those taking the 15 hour flight south. This is three seats that are available to just one passenger that can be arranged so they can stretch out and sleep the journey away, much like the much more expensive Business Class seats further forward in the aircraft.
A third container showed off the culture and food available in New Zealand. USA Today reported, “On the menu: New Zealand wine, a selection of New Zealand cheeses that are paired with Mānuka Honey, a signature Flat White coffee and a specially crafted kiwi fruit flavoured gelato.”
“We’re excited to open this new route to not only Chicagoans but also Midwest and East Coasters as well as travelers in Eastern Canada looking for a convenient option to fly to New Zealand with easy connections onto Australia,” said AirNZ regional general manager Americas Liz Frazer.
A novel use of a shipping container?
This isn’t the first time screens have been erected in a shipping container to immerse guests in a different part of the planet. It is shown to be a good way to advertise as it gives a whole body experience of something that in this case is several thousand miles away and for the uninitiated, might be otherwise a flight too far without enticement.
It hasn’t been reported how much a full scale conversion of a shipping container like this costs but it won’t have cost anything like the amount of cash risked in setting up the three flights a week from the US Midwest to the Southern Hemisphere, and if done right is sure to have made much of its money back. A decent shipping container can cost as little as $5,000 and from there you’d need to brand the outside and fit the inside – that can cost as much or as little as you want to spend!
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