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ATW Editor's Blog

ANZ safety video: what you think


Last week I asked your opinion on the latest Air New Zealand safety video, which I thought lost the plot. In fact, I asked if this was the worst safety video ever produced?

Below are some of the comments I received. They pretty much summarize the overall feeling, which is an even divide between those who dislike the video and those who either like it or, at least, prefer it to what other airlines do.

Comments came in from all over the planet, some from airline employees, some from aircraft suppliers/maintenance operations, some from airline agencies and some from people who just love this industry.

I smiled at the comment from Alan who said he’d take it as a compliment that he must still have the child in him because he found it amusing (I said the video’s slapstick humor would only appeal to those under 10).

Some of you asked to see the two other videos that I referred to and liked – one by Air France and the other by United. So here they are:

(Air France Chic Ladies)

(United Global & Kangaroo)

The AF video gets my vote for best-ever safety video; it’s fun, beautifully staged and filmed and oh-so French, You feel you are already in Paris even as you are settling into your seat.

And, yes, the United one appeals because of the kangaroos – both the joey that pops up at the mention of “pouch” and the ‘roo at the end that bites the flight attendant.

I’ll also share this newer UAL video with you because I just happened to fly United from LAX to IAD this week and saw their latest, which features the US Olympics Team. Another good one.

(United Olympics Team)

By all means chip in on any of the three – karen.walker@penton.com

Meanwhile, thanks to everyone for your ANZ thoughts – here are some of those comments:

Have just watched the Air NZ video and while it is true the safety bits are segmented, they are nonetheless clear and accurate and informative.

I don’t see that the timing of the exit points makes any difference. Nick

Well, to be fair, the on-board version wouldn't be 5:00 minutes long, would it? But, yes, it IS a lengthy story. I thought it was well-done but confused as to whom the humour was aimed at. One instant it seemed to be quite sophisticated, the next (as you mentioned) apparently calculated to get the kids to giggle. I don't think it's the worst ever but I do agree that ANZ might have overstretched the creativity with this one. Will the little darlings get the point indeed? Air NZ may well read your comments, listen, and learn. Fergus

I actually liked it.  I found it engaging, although a bit hokey.  But it changed up enough that it didn’t bore me.  I agree that after 2-3 times, I wouldn’t be watching, but that is equally true for the mundane safety videos (I won’t mention anyone…but one I’m rather familiar with fits this).  What I think they did well is to tie in the pertinent information in a way that fit the scenario:  seat belts while in the car is intuitive and fitting, the “passionate” scene made sense for the O2 masks, etc.  Although the acting and writing was trite, it did lead up to the point, and made slightly amusing transitions into the subject matter, which I think is the point.

On a side note, I give them a lot of credit for trying.  This is horribly dry material and most airlines do a tepid job at best at making the briefing worth hearing.  For those who fly rarely, they are probably not going to remember it anyway, since everything is new.  For those who can recite it along with the video, they already know.  Most of those in between aren’t listening either, because they think they know.

Anyway, thanks for bringing it to us, and keep up the good efforts! Bill

Just watched the NZ airline safety video and found it both informative and entertaining. Chronologically I am 63 yrs old but from your comments it seems my mental age is below 10. I'll take that as a compliment - it means I still have the child in me!

 Admittedly i haven't watched any other airline safety videos (I'm not a frequent flyer) but if I were to choose between hearing a piped commentary while watching a flight attendant doing calisthenics and NZ's safety video, I would certainly choose the video. Alan

Yes, it's bad, but just as bad as several safety briefings I've seen F/A's give on SWA. Jerry

I liked it. Keeps your attention and is funny.  Erkki

I have to agree with you. The video is too long, too weak on keeping the (captive) audience’s attention, too bizarre, …too bad! Since it’s online, maybe they could print out a certificate for those who watch it. At boarding, you can exchange the certificate for some ear plugs and ’sleep’ eye shades/masks! Jim

It makes me feel sick.  Really. Doug

My thoughts on the ANZ safety video;

To me airline safety is a very serious topic. Using a little humor to get the point across is fine but this video is ridiculous.

An airline safety video works much better when it is actually demonstrated on an airplane.

The vast majority of fliers have been on a plane multiple times but there are those who are first time fliers or very infrequent fliers. Those 2 groups of people may actually need to pay attention to a safety video to learn what to do in an emergency. This video doesn’t really address the safety concerns for first time fliers or infrequent fliers.

I’m a fan of Delta Airlines and their safety video does a good job of mixing a good safety message with the right amount of humor. Plus they update their video occasionally to keep it fresh.  Greg

This kids' safety film will be ideal for the children's section when the commensurately sized coach seats are exclusively for their use. For the adults in business (and six footers in first) there can be A, B or C - Adult themed, Boring old fashioned or, finally, Catholic, telling you it's a sin not to do this or that.  Tony

You asked for opinions on the ANZ safety video.  You did better than me, because they lost me 1:15 into it.  I think the safety information needed to be more prominent and the drivel in between toned down.  Thank goodness I’ve flown enough and seen enough good videos that I know what to do.  They need to edit it down to under 3 minutes and throw out half the filler.   Robert

I looked at that new Air New Zealand Video. It may not be the worst ever, but I'd say it is pretty close. Compared to the Air France and United safety videos, I'd say it is third rate. Their Lord of the Rings and Hobbit safety videos were much better. Of the three mentioned above, I think I like the Air France safety video the best.  

Thanks for sharing these with us.  David

Honestly, I've seen worse videos on Delta and American. Remember the 80s video ripoff Delta had a few years ago? That was insulting to those us who lived and remembered them well. Or how about the journey to middle earth also on Air New Zealand? That video was bad, too.

The Air New Zealand flight safety video was clever, funny and lighthearted. Especially for over 10 years old. I enjoyed the different scenes and locations, with the flight crew showing up to remind of various safety requirements.

It kept me watching and entertained. Which was a lot better than... "please listen to our safety video" which I immediately ignore having heard it thousands of times.  Phil
I disagree most people however silly the video is will be entertained. I agree it is slap stick but it indeed covered all the current regulations. I think that most frequent know the drill, and this may be aimed at the first time AIR NEW ZEALAND flyers. Please don't be offended by the lack of hilarious humor, but chalk it up as an upbeat way to start some of the long, boring long haul flights. Lewis

Here are my 2 cents on the video.  I didn’t find it that bad.  A little drawn out, yes.  But I think the safety instructions were not buried in the video or unclear.  Maybe I was expecting worse after reading your editorial. 

As far as other “worst” videos, AA really needs to come up with something else.  Unlike DL & UA, they show no creativity at all.  Now that’s something to fall asleep to, or at least lose interest.  What’s worse, the video for the (legacy US Airways) A330’s shows an AA video introduction and ending, with the actual safety video in between, still from US Airways days.  Boring and a patchwork.  Hopefully, as the merger integration continues, AA will come up with a new and improved video for all of their fleet.  Marcus


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