“It’s not about the destination but the journey to get there,” goes the famous adage. Some international airlines are taking this to saying to heart, thinking outside of the box to make flying enjoyable. Everything from innovative passenger safety videos, to beat boxing flight attendants to innovative fleets – a few companies go above and beyond what it means to fly the friendly skies. Here, we’ve listed our top five airlines, which make the journey just as awesome as the destination.
On Southwest flight 372 one attendant had enough of boring safety info presentations. He took it upon himself to liven things up by rapping the instructions to a captive audience, which went wild, as did the internet when it went viral. Not only that, Southwest goes out of its way to entertain passengers by surprising them with in-flight sets by famous bands, like Imagine Dragons, literary readings, and other “in-flight activations.”
On Virgin America, you can send an instant message to that tall, dark, mystery traveler in seat 27b with just the touch of a screen, certainly spicing up your journey. In 2013, the airline upped the ante by rebranding their in-flight safety video, directed by Jon M.Chu of Step Up 2, Step Up 3D. The brilliantly choreographed film includes Olympians and So You Think You Can Dance alums, with this all-star cast and moves racking up 6 million views on YouTube in the first two weeks of its launch. This is all before anyone even set foot on the plane.
It may sound like a joke, but this Taiwanese airline is a colorful homage to Hello Kitty and her Sanrio friends, complete with a fleet of cartoon-covered aircrafts. From an all pink and bowed check-in kiosk area to Hello Kitty-themed in-flight meals and flight attendants clad in pink kitty outfits, you’ll think you’ve died and gone to cartoon heaven.
The first thing you’ll notice about this South African airline is their fleet. Bright green vessels read “Flying 101” and list fun details like where the “big cheese,” aka captain sits and where the black box (which they say is actually orange) is; other models read “this way up.” Flight attendants are known for their cheeky sense of humor, offering one-liners like, “There may be 50 ways to leave your lover, but there are only four ways out of this airplane.”
Did somebody say free beer? Whatever your booking class, this Canadian airline offers complimentary beer, wine, soft drinks and snacks. At a time when airlines don’t even hand out the bare minimum like peanuts, this is a welcome perk. Plus, Porter opens up their plush airport lounges to all passengers, so not only the elite have access to free WiFi, refreshments, and comfortable seating while waiting to board. And lastly, there are no middle seats on the flights, which we all know, being stuck in is no fun.