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December 5, 2023

Airlines safety videos become creative

Inside an aircraft

Just when you thought in-flight experiences can’t get any better, passengers are in for an even more exciting adventure. And that doesn’t start with just the variety of food options that airlines are now offering or with the more leg space or higher degree of backrest incline.

In recent years, twelve airlines are throwing in a pail of creativity into their in-flight safety demos, to draw attention to a very important yet admittedly the most overlooked five-minutes of the flight. With these innovative and somehow downright hilarious presentations that are more like prequels to an entertaining flight, the flight crew comes back to the center aisle, literally, and they’re more than ready to have the passengers take a second look at them.

Turkish Airlines recently came out with its digitally-edited safety video featuring American celebrity Zach King who would magically, and entertainingly, swipe his hand and bring to life the essential narratives of inflight safety in visually-stimulating format. So talk about magic in the skies!

Turkish Airlines Safety Video with Zack King

In one of their inflight videos that has “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” playing in the background, Air New Zealand calls for “a second look” as the pilot and crew members are stripped down to a body paint of their uniforms as they explained the scripted “bare essentials” of inflight safety guidelines. In another flight video that underscores the country’s love for rugby, safety procedures were demonstrated by New Zealand’s All Blacks team and some quirky spectators riding with them. The most popular video, shown more than two years ago, is of epic proportions, with hobbits, elves, armies, and other worldly creatures participating in a drama that would make any traveler pay attention.

Atlanta-based Delta Airlines has a portfolio of comical videos. One has a montage of a serious-looking flight crew narrating the script and a zoo of animal characters acting out the lines. In another version, actual persons animate the script and it’s not surprising to see familiar personalities like the man who keeps his tablet in a book, Moses clearing the aisle as though parting the Red Sea, and the most awkward of seatmates. Its most recent video, though, had a more toned-down and formal approach, featuring its global operation staff taking turns narrating the to-dos as blue line graphics underlines the safety message.

Australian flag carrier Qantas Airlines lets off that chill aussie vibe in their 2017 video. Set against the backdrop of the airline’s domestic destinations from Darwin and Sydney to New South Wales and Canberra, travelers get a catalogue view of sunset beaches, snow-covered mountains, the city life and even the party scene. A group of interpretative dancers choreograph a set of the bracing position as though passengers can balance alertness with elegance in an event of an emergency landing. The national animal kangaroo played a cameo role to remind passengers to switch off mobile devices. A wedding scene with a flower girl counting the seats to the exit was a In all, the safety video was a laidback take on flying safely while on th

Qantas Airlines Safety Video 2017

Air France has not updated their 2015 bilingual safety video but its Amelie-type theatrical performance remains a classic witty recital of five ladies in a café-ish set. Very French!

United Airlines’ 2016 safety video banks on the United States’ gymnastics, soccer, basketball, swimming, and running teams performing the safety procedure with a flight attendant narrating the steps. The festive mood of party vibe and nationalistic spirit was consistent throughout the whole video. The airline has been flying Team USA to the Olympics and Paralympics for the past 35 years.

Qatar Airways is not one to miss out on the sports theme as the football field is stage to the airlines’ 2015 safety demonstration. Featuring Futbol Club Barcelona wearing Qatar sports shirts, one of the scenes had one of the players pass by causing excited fans to be advised that if oxygen level goes down, a mask would automatically be released to activate the oxygen supply. Sports fanatics act out the seatbelt precautions with replays of the bracing position performed by the players themselves. This video is one of the most viewed videos online.

Aeroflot Russian Airlines has one of its flight attendant in an all-red garb speaking in Russian with English subtitles reminding the passengers of the dos and don’ts. The slow-motion theme of this 2016 video played on with the Russian mystique that accompanied the piercing look and deep voice of the attendant.

The 2017 video of the Dubai-based Emirates Airlines offers crisp clean angles of the airplane, showing viewers a top-down and cross-section of the inside of the plane as the passengers act out the safety demonstration.

Icelandic Air features a solo traveler figuring her way around the wilderness with an English-speaking narrator giving her step-by-step instructions on the safety guide. Later on, a travel buddy shows up, then a whole travelers’ group joins her in kayaking, trekking, jumping, hiking through the great Icelandic landscape. It’s like a travel video log that makes viewers want to fly to Iceland to experience the great outdoors.

German airline Lufthansa and Finland-based Finnair have avatars in business suits acting out the script of the safety demo—modern and straight-to-the-point, very German and Scandic.

The KLM Royal Dutch Airline shows off The Netherland’s distinct blue-and-white color theme. The video was apparently made with over one thousand hand painted ceramic tiles, photographing every tile using the stop-motion technique to animate and capture every step of the safety demonstration.

The most recent in the creative lineup of vidoes is the Philippines’ very own flag carrier Philippine Airlines with its first-ever creative safety flight video.  Set against the various destinations of the archipelago, the aerial, underwater, fisheye, and time-lapse shots leave no angle of the country uncovered. The video that is “inspired by everyone in the country” is a showcase of the diversity of what Filipinos are and where they live. There’s the barong-clad tourist in Luneta, the backpacker smoking an e-cigarette in front of the active Mayon Volcano, the young couple ziplining between mountains…these ordinary-looking tourists narrate and act out the script with that very distinctive Filipino accent. The adlibs of regional dialects peppered throughout the lines give the safety video its discrete local fare that the Philippines and the Filipinos are known for.

With these in-flight safety videos, there’s no excuse not to be an equally informed, alert, and entertained passenger.



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