With the nearing Christmas and New Year celebrations some airlines commemorate the holidays by offering exclusive deals to their loyal customers whilst others greet their passengers with spectacular on-board parties during flights. In fact, celebrating up in the sky has become a real trend amongst hard-core flyers in recent years. For instance, in Russia alone there were 13000 passengers who counted down the last seconds to the New Year on-board last year!
The New Year countdown on-board is not everyone’s cup of tea, but some passengers are simply not given the choice due to common holiday-related delays. In the meantime, more and more flying enthusiasts worldwide are making an actual choice to spend their New Year celebration in the sky. However, it is not only passengers who find themselves in the air during major celebrations. After all, every decent party must have a well-organized host. In this case the responsibilities fall on the shoulders of the cabin crew.
There’s a common belief that the way that you greet a New Year is indicative of the way that you will be spending it. Needless to say, when it comes to passengers spending the celebration on-board, the superstition does not apply in the same way as it does to cabin crew members. However, it does not mean that the celebratory flight is anything like an everyday routine service for flight attendants. After all, not only do they have to ensure passenger comfort and safety, but also maintain an uplifting festive mood.
‘For instance, last year during a flight from Orlando to Manchester operated on the New Year’s Eve the cabin crew of Virgin Airlines entertained their passengers with music and dances. The flight turned into a spectacular party, a true carnival,’ recalls Skaiste Knyzaite, the CEO of AviationCV.com
In the meantime, a ticket to a regular flight is not the only way to celebrate holidays, especially when it comes to celebrating them in real style. Wealthier passengers are invited to hop on a charter plane from Sydney to Los Angeles and celebrate New Year twice! During such flights the cabin crew goes more than a single extra mile to make the night special with free celebratory cocktails, raffle tickets, games, etc.
Still not convinced? Well, if you are not thrilled about celebrating on-board, it does not mean that you will not be treated by your airline during this special time of the year. Last year the Canadian LCC WestJet arranged a real surprise treat for the passengers of two flights. Prior to take-off they were invited to have a virtual meeting with the company’s Santa, who took notes of their Christmas wishes. Once the passengers reached their destination and got to the baggage hall, they saw a rail full of sliding presents with the name tags on them. WestJet managed to turn their passengers’ wishes into real gifts, such as airplane tickets and tablets.
For another noteworthy example of a successful holiday campaign let’s head to Asia. Over there the flight attendants at Shanghai Pudong International Airport surprised travellers and onlookers with a themed flash mob in the middle of the terminal to celebrate the Chinese New Year. Not only did it lift the passengers’ spirits, but also acted as a great marketing tool to the airport.
‘If previously flight attendants did not have to change into Santas, sing Christmas carols or wrap presents, nowadays the situation is different. Holiday campaigns are not only gaining popularity, but also happen to be rather expected. This means that the traditional list of qualities required from flight attendants is expanding to include the talent of an entertainer, not only a service professional. Of course, sometimes passengers themselves, especially after downing a bit too much eggnog, end up throwing improvised parties on-board. However, I believe it should best be done by professionals,’ smiles the CEO of AviationCV.com.