Watch Bear Grylls in latest Air New Zealand safety video

By David Flynn, February 27 2013
Watch Bear Grylls in latest Air New Zealand safety video

Bear Grylls has joined Air New Zealand to star in another of the airline's quirky safety videos, titled 'The Bear Essentials of Safety'.

Filmed in a remote part of the Routeburn Track near Fiordland in New Zealand’s South Island – making this perhaps the world's first airline safety video shot entirely outdoors! – the Man vs Wild presenter finds novel ways to guide travellers through the mandatory safety steps.

Grylls isn't alone in this task, enlisting aid from renowned Kiwi entomologist Ruud Kleinpaste (also known as The Bug Man), three Kiwi Scouts and several native creatures, including a Kea, a Tuatara, native glow worms and even the extinct flightless New Zealand bird called the Moa.

The Bear Essentials of Safety rolls out across the Air New Zealand fleet from today, but you don't need to catch a flight to see it when you can catch it right here on Australian Business Traveller!

Air New Zealand Chief Marketing and Customer Officer Mike Tod says the clip is intended to "bring to life important on-board safety messages in a unique and compelling way while at the same time demonstrating the best of what New Zealand has to offer."

It's another of Air New Zealand's unique and mostly highly-watchable safety videos, following The Hobbit-themed An Unexpected Briefing, an animated cartoon voiced by Kiwi actress Melanie Lynskey and Ed O'Neill (of Modern Family and Married With Children fame), plus that unforgettably cheeky one featuring staff who were naked but for body paint.

AirNZ's An Unexpected Briefing

AirNZ's line-drawn celebrity-loaded animation

AirNZ's The Bare Essentials of Safety

AirNZ's Crazy About Rugby

Then there's the unforgettable video that we'd like to forget, with fitness legend Richard Simmons in a disco-themed safety demo.

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David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2011

Total posts 732

They have a great marketing department (or agency employed) as NZ always comes up with a novel new safety video. It seems though they are churning them around at quite a pace and I wonder what it actually sets them back. In this era where airlines are trying to make a dime whereever they can, I would think that a safety video is an area you can easily save money on as the message is pretty standard and it could run for years. My guess is that as these clips go viral it acts as marketing / publicity so part of the costs is allocated to advertising? Very nice nonetheless.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2555

KG, I reckon that's a very succinct breakdown of this. This morning, after writing the article and in fact while enjoying my first coffee of the day, I was pondering the relatively quick turnaround from say the Hobbit video to this, and the costs connected with it.

These things are becoming quite epic. The costs of The Hobbit video would have been quite high but this one would have blown them through the roof!

So yes, AirNZ will be seeing these as a big shot in the arm for publicity and marketing, the fact that they get a safety video out of it seems almost a bonus!

While not everybody likes AirNZ's decidely different take on safety videos, nobody can deny the airline has cared out a nice marketing niche and continues to punch above its weight in this area!

03 Jan 2011

Total posts 665

Oh, Air NZ is absolutely using these as marketing tools, and they've said so — they use the "little airline at the end of the world" line a lot.

Even with the expense of hiring a helicopter and Bear Grylls, it's a cost-effective way of getting things to go viral.

My concern as someone subjected to that #@(%@& Richard Simmons video dozens of times (I am not a giraffe) is that they're great for viral videos to watch, but can actually be a negative in terms of the experience passengers have on board.

(By contrast, I flew three times shortly after the Hobbit video was released on board, and everyone was laughing along with it. That's what they need to go for on board.)

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Mar 2012

Total posts 211

both of you make great points. I've only got one thing to say - hello captain, hello captain...argghhhhhh

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