Travel trends: Taking Air Hobbit to Middle-earth

Have you seen the latest billboard for the new Peter Jackson movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey?

It’s on an airplane.

Air New Zealand has decked out one of its jets with a giant decal inspired by the movie. It’ll be making its way between Auckland, LA and London.

The message: This particular carrier is the most authentic transportation to Middle-earth — i.e., the parts of New Zealand central to some of the movies.

The airline is also offering cleverly packaged tours to destinations all around Middle-earth. You can find them under the — where else — Middle-earth tab on its site.

I actually took a variation of the Pillars of the Kings tour years ago. I ran around New Zealand’s South Island and climbed a glacier. It wasn’t a tour with a whimsical name. And it didn’t cost no $3,500. But hey.

Personally, I think the best New Zealand entertainment export ever was Flight of the Conchords, which brought us fab talents Jemaine Clement, Rhys Darby and Kristen Schaal (so glad to see her resurface on 30 Rock.)

Meanwhile, I’m trying to imagine a similar promo on a U.S. airline. Dancing with the Stars with Maks’ lovely mug? Homeland’s Carrie and Brody with their crazed stares?

Got any ideas? We may be on to sumpin’.

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2 Responses to Travel trends: Taking Air Hobbit to Middle-earth

  1. Simona says:

    The news about Air New Zealand’s exploitation of the upcoming release of The Hobbit made me smile. It also made me want to hop on a plane and visit that country again. We were there 8 years ago, at the end of December and enjoyed our trip a lot, though the weather was pretty bad (rainy). Although my husband is a big fan of The Lord of the Rings, we didn’t have the movie inform our itinerary. Nonetheless, we found ourselves in places that had been used in the movie and when we were in Nelson, stopped by the jeweler who had designed the ring and saw a copy. (Sadly, the jeweler passed away before the movies were released: in the store, we talked to his son.)

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