Air New Zealand has launched a new safety video highlighting the impact of New Zealand’s biodiversity crisis.
Following on from the Kiwi carrier’s heavily-criticised Air All Blacks spin, the new video is equal parts cute and cringey.
It follows the story of a young girl who helps transport “Mr T”, a lost CGI takahē to his new home with the help of a ragtag team of flight attendants and members of the Department of Conservation (DOC).
Along the way, the clip showcases the large, flightless bird’s natural habitats including iconic destinations like the Murchison Mountains in Fiordland, Tiritiri Matangi in the Hauraki Gulf and Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari in Waikato.
At one point, an Air New Zealand flight attendant helps Mr T find love using a bird dating app, which the airline posted a video about on its social media accounts for Valentine’s Day.
Posting the video to Twitter, Air New Zealand took the opportunity to take a swipe at Qantas’ new video A Century of Safety, which launched earlier this week.
— Air New Zealand✈️ (@FlyAirNZ) February 27, 2020
“Hey @Qantas, it’s your younger slightly better-looking cousin from across the ditch. Good work on A Century of Safety — how about A Journey to Safety?” the airline said on Twitter.
Under its partnership with the DOC, the airline has transported more than 3,200 threatened species to safe havens, funded pest traps across 38,000 hectares of the country, and supported marine science and research within New Zealand’s marine reserves.
DOC ambassador Nicola Toki said a huge number of species in New Zealand are on the fast track to extinction.
“We’ve already lost 50 species of birds since humans arrived in New Zealand, and each year up to 25 million native birds are killed by introduced predators,” she said.
“Protecting our native taonga is a massive challenge, but one all Kiwis and businesses can be part of, by doing things like purchasing backyard traps and getting behind their local community groups.
“We’re thrilled to have been able to work with Air New Zealand on their latest safety video. Our native species are part of our identity as Kiwis, and it’s so important to protect that.”
The video was revealed a day after Air New Zealand released its half-yearly results, reporting a massive drop in profit for the first half of FY20, citing slower demand, weakness in the global cargo market and the ongoing unrest in Hong Kong.
The Kiwi carrier posted a net profit after tax of NZ$101 million ($96.9 million) for the six months to 31 December 2019 – down 32.7 per cent on the prior corresponding period.